Aug 9, 2007

FREE Alternative to WinZip (and WinRAR)

If you work at a help desk, you inevitably get calls from users saying, "I need WinZIP! Can you install it for me?" Before I begin jumping through hoops to get the right approvals to order them a license, I ask them a few things:

1) Do you need the ability to create self extracting archives?
2) Do you need the ability to open multiple archive formats like RAR for example?

If they answer no to either of the above questions, I show them how Windows XP has a built in "ZIP" utility. (If you don't know, you can right click on a zip file and select "Extract all" to bring up the Compressed (zipped) Folders Extraction Wizard.) I also show them that they can create zip files by right clicking on files or folders they want to zip up and select Send to...> Compressed file (zip) folder). Easy, and more importantly no extra money needs to be spent.

What if they answered Yes to the above questions? Then I tell them about 7zip. 7Zip, is a free open source archive file manager. I used to use WinRAR, but technically you are supposed to purchase a license for that as well. Well no more! 7zip has all of the same functionality as WinZIP and WinRAR combined! It supports all compression formats including zip, rar, iso, tar and so forth! It even has the ability to create self extracting sfx archives as well!

Seriously, the next time you feel you need WinZIP, do a quick wallet check. Would you rather spend the money on an unnecessary license, or maybe take your lady out on a hot date? I'm going with the hot date.

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | stopping spam