How do I zip and unzip files?

Zipping a file

Zipping a file (also known as compression) is the process of compressing one or more files into a single “zipped” file. This makes the file smaller in size, which makes it easier to store, send or download over the internet. Zipped files take up less space on disk and can be downloaded faster than unzipped files.

There are several different types of file compression formats, but the most popular is the Zip format. Most computers come with an unzip program already installed, so you should have no problem opening zip files.

There are two ways to zip a file:

1. Using a compression software:

Using a file compression software is the easiest way to zip and unzip files. This type of software allows you to easily create and extract ZIP files, giving you more control over the files within the archive. Third-party programs such as 7-Zip, WinZip, and WinRAR are popular compression programs that can help you zip and unzip files.

2. Using the command line:

Advanced users may prefer to zip and unzip files using the command line. This method is more complicated than using a compression software, and requires more steps. You’ll need to open the command prompt window and type the appropriate command to create the zip file.

To zip a file, use the following command:

zip –r file_to_zip

To unzip a file, use the following command:


These commands will work in Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems.

You can also zip and unzip files directly in the operating system without having to use any external software. For example, in Windows 10 you can right-click on a file or folder, select “Send to”, and then choose “Compressed (zipped) folder”. This will create a zipped file containing the selected item(s). To unzip a file, simply right-click on the file, select “Extract All”, and then follow the on-screen instructions.

Whichever method you choose, zipping and unzipping files is a quick and easy way to save disk space, reduce file sizes, and speed up download times.