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What’s a good, free alternative to WinZip?

I used to like TugZip, but the development on it has stopped and it has no x64 version, so after installing a fresh Windows 7 x64 I'm in the market for a good freeware archiver.

That said, don't limit your answers just to x64 or Windows solutions. Let's make this thread a nice thorough list of freeware archivers.

It would be nice to post one software per answer, and also to include as much information as possible about the tool. Interesting pieces of knowledge include (but are not limited to):

  • What OS it supports?
  • What file formats it supports (or at least how many)? The de-facto standards today are ZIP, 7Z, RAR, TAR, GZ and BZ2, so it would be nice to know if it supports at least these. ISO is also popular, although not strictly an archive format.
  • Does it have a 64 bit version as well?
  • Does it have GUI/CLI components?
  • Does it have shell extensions?
  • What other strengths/weaknesses does it have?
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marked as duplicate by Phoshi, MicTech, Snark, William Hilsum, Gnoupi Nov 14 '09 at 21:53

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Exact duplicate? Of what? I couldn't find the question. Please provide me a link! –  Vilx- Nov 14 '09 at 19:43
Possible duplicate: superuser.com/questions/7399/… –  Leftium Nov 14 '09 at 20:09
-1, because you asked a question you could have googled, had reservations about certain solutions that you failed to mention, and then acted all prickly when Phoshi gave you a simple, helpful answer. –  Lee B Nov 14 '09 at 21:37
Whatwhatwhat? First of all - what keywords could I have googled to get a comprehensive list of all existing archivers and their features? (Not that people around here have been helpful to make one); Second - I didn't go all prickly. I just told what I think of it. This was supposed to be a list of all archivers and people's thoughts about them - not an answer to the question "what archiver should I use"? –  Vilx- Nov 16 '09 at 15:24
I do agree thought that it is a duplicate to the other question, which I couldn't find myself (yes, before posting I did search for this question and SO and didn't find that one). –  Vilx- Nov 16 '09 at 15:25

5 Answers 5


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Don't worry, I can find my way around the interwebs myself. And I installed 7-zip x64 before I even started this thread. But I'm wondering if there is anything better out there, because, frankly, the UI is a crap and it could support more formats. –  Vilx- Nov 14 '09 at 19:48
To change it's UI a bit take a look at the 7-Zip Theme Manager (killercookie-server.media-xshell.com/7zTM) –  Xandy Nov 14 '09 at 20:28
No "Best Archivers" thread is complete without 7-zip! Thought I'd get in there first ;) The UI is god-awful, yes. –  Phoshi Nov 14 '09 at 20:31
Someone had mentioned JZip here on SU before for a better 7-zip GUI. jzip.com –  Isxek Nov 14 '09 at 20:49
Yeah, I though of that too, but it has no x64 support. :) –  Vilx- Nov 14 '09 at 21:31

PeaZip - open source file and archive manager. Flexibe, portable, secure, and free as in freedom.

basically, you get 7-Zip and much, much more.

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Is there a normal filer-style hierarchical-folders interface available, or only the ghastly old-school-WinZip-style flat list I see in all the screenshots? –  bobince Nov 14 '09 at 20:50
have a look at Free Commander or Total Commander, explorer replacements with plenty pack options built in or via additional plugins. –  Molly7244 Nov 15 '09 at 0:05


Ain't free, but it's the best archiver I've ever used. 7z tends to get better compression ratios, but this is 2009, so that shouldn't influence your choice for your "standard" archiver.

Runs on Windows, opens most anything, creates zip and rar with a lot of options. Has some nice shell integration, too!

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If multi-format capabilities are important to you, use IZArc.

It's freeware and can read nearly 50 archive types including media formats like ISO, BIN, and IMG. It also can convert and save to 12 different formats. It can handle multi-part zip files, which 7-Zip can't. It also supports command line parameters. Available on Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista.

Here's what the interface looks like (quite standard for this type of product):


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7-zip!As of yet, can't be beaten in terms of compression algorithms. Maybe in the future!

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How about PAQ? It all depends on what you consider to be compression algorithm efficiency. –  Doktoro Reichard Aug 23 '13 at 15:06

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