Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

How do I change the password of an .RAR archive, without changing the date/time attributes of the files in the archive? Unfortunately you can't directly change the password of the archive with WinRAR, you have to extract the files, and then make a new archive with the new password. So the created/modified attributes of the files in the archive get changed. I know you can manually change the attributes of a file with available utilities - but there are hundreds of files in the archive, each with unique attributes, so it would take a very long time to "fix" each file before re-archiving it.

I'm using WinRAR 3.51, the last free version. Windows XP Pro SP3.

Update: I don't care if the output is a .RAR file or a ZIP file

IZArc4.1 will convert the RAR to a ZIP, and it keeps the dates. The problem is it compresses the file - there isn't a "store" option, and setting the default to store in the main configuration doesn't effect conversions. The RAR contains uncompressed files.

None of these other archiving programs will even do a conversion. A couple claim to, or try to, but the errors returned indicate a very lousy application. So far I've tried PeaZip, 7-Zip, FilZip, TugZip, SimplyZipSE, QuickZip, and WinShrink (from downloads.cnet.com).

WinRAR gives the error "skipping encryped archive" when I try the conversion. It asks for the password first, and I know it's right, as I opened the archive, and I can read/view all the files in it. It works on non-encrypted files.

share|improve this question

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I solved this problem by converting the RAR archive to a TAR archive with IZArc, and then converting the TAR archive to an RAR archive with WinRAR (Tools-Convert-Compression for options). This preserved the date/time attributes, got past the problem that WinRAR won't convert a password protected archive (even though I know the password.)

share|improve this answer

Take my word, its impossible. You would have to decompress it and then recompress it. There are several utilities that help you change the date http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/bulk_file_changer.html thats a bulk file attribute changer.

The reason that its impossible is that the password is not only in the file, but that the file is encrypted completely based on that password.

Your in a pickle. I would suggest trying to automate the process by using batch and a cli attribute editor... one comes with windows. Hint, use macros to make the creation of the batch file easyer, and use dir to pull all the names quickly.

On the other hand, why not just change your system time to match those on the files.

share|improve this answer
Your 3rd paragraph doesn't make sense. I have software to change a files attributes, and I've seen one that you can run from the command line. If I had a batch file with all the files' current attributes, it could call the attribute changer for each file. But how to create that bat file? Typing in the current attributes of each file manually? That's more time consuming they just changing each files attributes. –  Carl Jun 28 '10 at 17:54
Forgive my lingo, i think i found something even better nirsoft.net/utils/bulk_file_changer.html A bulk file changer! –  Ray Jun 28 '10 at 18:09
I already have software that will change the attributes of multiple files at a time. That doesn't help. Each of them has unique attributes. –  Carl Jun 28 '10 at 18:28

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.