All About ZIP Files
Last Updated: October 26, 1998
NOTE: This web site has been replaced by a new site that is designed for users of Windows 95/98/NT. The new site can be found at: http://www.eurekais.com/brock/aazip.htm.
Part 1. IntroductionMany files which are available for download on the internet are stored as "ZIP" files. Storing files in the ZIP format provides two advantages for the person who downloads the file: (1) Several files (e.g., all of the files associated with a particular program) can be downloaded as one file, and (2) the files stored in a ZIP file are compressed, so that the ZIP file is smaller than the size of the uncompressed files, resulting in a faster download. ZIP files are only for use on IBM computers - they do not work on Macintosh computers.
Due to the many requests I have received from internet users, I have assembled the following guides that explain how ZIP files work. If you just want to learn how to "unzip" ZIP files that you download, select the link to Quick and Dirty Guides to Unzipping .ZIP Files, provided below. If you want a more in-depth tutorial on ZIP files, including detailed instructions on how to create your own ZIP files, select the link to In-Depth Tutorial on ZIP Files, provided below. Also, check out Winzip and PKzip for Windows, two excellent programs that allow you to manage ZIP files without leaving the comfortable Windows interface.
Part 2. Quick and Dirty Guides to Unzipping .ZIP FilesProvided below are links to two quick and dirty guides that explain how to extract the stored files from a .ZIP file The process of extracting files from a .ZIP file is called "unzipping". Extracted files are then ready to setup or run. Remember, most games that you download from the Internet are provided in compressed ".ZIP" format to save download time. You must "unzip" the .ZIP file in order to get at the program and/or its setup files.
Part 3. In-Depth Tutorial on ZIP FilesIf you want to learn more about ZIP files, inlcluding
Part 4. Alternatives: Winzip and PKzip for Windows