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What is the best option to open .rar files on Windows Vista?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

What is the best option to open .rar files on Windows Vista?

WinRAR is a powerful archive manager. It can backup your data and reduce the size of email attachments, decompress RAR, ZIP and other files.

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pro: polished interface, creators of the compression so must be better supported / con: not free – fluxtendu Feb 24 '10 at 18:24
@fluxtendu - unRAR is actually free. minus the polished interface, that is :) – Molly7244 Feb 24 '10 at 18:49
@Molly: unRAR is only free as in cost. – Broam Mar 9 '10 at 17:00


Does lots more besides RAR: ZIP and ISO to name a few.

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pro: free & open source / con: unpolished interface – fluxtendu Feb 24 '10 at 18:22
The unRAR.dll in 7-Zip actually has a license restriction--you can't use it to build a rar archiver. – Broam Mar 9 '10 at 17:01
True, but OP asked about opening rar files. – Michael Itzoe Mar 9 '10 at 17:51
It's true about the unpolished interface... but hey, the program itself is awesome and I never rar files anyway, I 7zip them. – Camilo Martin Dec 27 '10 at 21:54

If you like the command line you can install UnRar from - it's free and native to Win32.

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It looks funny when I see something GNU to be called native for win :) – geek Feb 24 '10 at 17:14
GNU is Not Unix – PP. Feb 24 '10 at 17:33

IZarc which is a free download which supports many archive formats like: 7-ZIP, A, ACE, ARC, ARJ, B64, BH, BIN, BZ2, BZA, C2D, CAB, CDI, CPIO, DEB, ENC, GCA, GZ, GZA, HA, IMG, ISO, JAR, LHA, LIB, LZH, MDF, MBF, MIM, NRG, PAK, PDI, PK3, RAR, RPM, TAR, TAZ, TBZ, TGZ, TZ, UUE, WAR, XXE, YZ1, Z, ZIP, ZOO.

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