GENERAL: What are compressed files, and how do I use them?


A compressed file is a collection of are one or many files that have been mathematically compressed to reduce their size.  There are loads of different ways of doing this, some include security encryption, and different techniques give different results

Why Compress Files?

3 main reasons:

1 – to save SIZE – so the files are quicker to transfer over the internet and save bandwidth

2 – to add SECURITY – as files can be protected with a password that is very difficult to break

3 – to keep a group of files TOGETHER.  Thus you only need to download one file and then you actually have all the files together.

Sounds complex, how do I uncompress?

Behind the scenes it is or can be complex, but for you it isn’t!  You just need a “tool” in order to “extract” or “uncompress” the files.

What tool do I recommend?

There are loads of tools out there, some cost money, some are trials, but one in particular – 7-Zip is a totally free tool, tried and trusted, and hassle free.  It can deal with most compressed file types, the usual ZIPs, RARs, and loads you’ve never heard of.  Once installed, you can easily “right click” a compressed file, and on the menu that appears select “Z-Zip” then “Extract…”

You can then extract “here” (to the loction the file is), or to a new folder with the file name of the compressed file.  I recommned the latter so that all extracted files are easily seen and grouped

Download 7-ZIp for free HERE