7-Zip is an excellent open source compression utility similar to WinZip and WinRar. 7-Zip has excellent compression and supports many different compressed file types.
7-Zip was the winner of the SourceForge.net 2007 community choice awards for “Technical Design” and for “Best Project” 7-Zip can be downloaded from http://www.7-zip.org/ We recommend using the MSI install versions. Make sure you download the correct 32 or 64 bit version for your system.
By default 7-Zip does not associate itself with the various compressed file types. Without this association, you cannot easily use 7-zip from Windows Explorer.
Fortunately creating the association is very easy. Follow these configuration steps:
- Open the 7-Zip File Manager from your start menu.
- Go to the tools menu and select options.
- Either select the individual extensions you wish to associate or press the “Select All” button (recommended).
- Press Ok to save your changes.
Your done, You can now close the 7-Zip File Manager. You will now be able to double-click any archive files in Explorer to open them or right-click on them for different extraction and compression options.
Here is an update for Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 file association problems. Run 7-zip as administrator. See this article.