Most people use Winzip or WinRAR to compress files, but there are many alternatives that can do all sorts of crazy compressing operating even generating CAB files or super-compress files
Most people could do with a little extra space on their hard drive, but not everyone wants to have to pay for a zipping tool. As good as WinZip and WinRAR are, some users refuse to buy them on principle. Although 7Zip is a free alternative, it’s not to everyone’s liking. Luckily, there’s plenty of other quality freeware available.
jZip – Alternative to 7zip
Due to being based on the same technology, jZip is largely seen as an alternative to 7Zip. It can even create, extract and open 7Zip files, as well as supporting other archive formats such as RAR, ISO, Zip, TAR and GZip. jZip has a high level of usability and compresses software swiftly. Sporting an elegant design, jZip’s interface is remarkably intuitive. Multiple languages are supported, including English, Chinese and Spanish. Mac and Linux users will be disappointed to learn that jZip is only available for Windows and Vista.
PeaZip – The Opensource Alternative
More than 150 file types are supported by PeaZip, including 7Zip, RAR, ZIP and TAR. PeaZip also supports several strong encryption standards.This open source software is extremely versatile, and is able to compress, convert, split and encrypt each of the archive types it supports. PeaZip is only available for Windows and Linux. In specific geographical markets, downloading PeaZip can be a very slow process, but the software does have 2 mirrors to work around this.
ZipGenius – The WinZip Alternative
Probably the zipping tool most similar to WinZip, ZipGenius supports more than 20 file types. ZipGenius most resembles WinZip in terms of interface, but there are many other similarities as well, meaning WinZip users usually find the transition to this freeware to be completely problem-free. However, people who have no experience with WinZip may find ZipGenius a little harder to use than other zipping tools. The default languages of ZipGenius are English and Italian, but the software also supports multiple other languages, including French, German and Dutch.
Known for being straightforward, no-nonsense software, the Extractor is ideal for users of all levels of computer literacy. The panel-style interface is extremely easy to use, making it a piece of cake to zip and unzip files. One of the best features of The Extractor is the drag-and-drop functionality. During the installation process, the optional bundled software may trigger alerts from antivirus programs. However, tests have shown that The Extractor is completely free of malware, so these alerts can be ignored.
Free PDF Compressor – If You Want To Compress PDF’s
If it’s mainly PDF files that are taking up space on the hard drive, it may be worth downloading a zipping tool specifically for PDFs. The simple interface consists of just a few standard buttons, allowing users to easily select, compress and decompress files. Free PDF Compressor, as the name suggests, is one such tool. Although this tool frees up a lot of space by compressing PDFs, it is in itself somewhat of a resource hog, considering it’s a single-purpose program. It uses as much as 40 to 50MB of memory.
Having the right zipping software in place can make the life of a computer user immeasurably easier. Although some zip tools are harder to use than others, it doesn’t take long to get the hang of most of them. Making the effort to install and use file compressors is well worth it.