7-Zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio for ZIP and GZIP formats, which is between 2 to 10% better than its peers, depending on the exact data tested. And 7-Zip boosts its very own 7z archive format that also offers a significantly higher compression ratio than its peers—up to 40% higher! This is mainly because 7-Zip uses LZMA and LZMA2 compression, with strong compression settings and dictionary sizes, to slow but vastly improve density. If a zip tool gains its appeal from its ability to efficiently compress files, then 7-Zip proves it has a little bit o’ magic.
7-Zip at a Glance
After you effortlessly download and launch 7-Zip, you’ll quickly discover its simple and easy to navigate interface. The main toolbar contains 7-Zip’s most used features and there are several menus that allow you to dig deeper within. For example, the Extract button lets you easily browse for or accept the default destination directory for your file, while the View menu contains a Folder History, and the Favorites menu lets you save up to ten folders. 7-Zip also integrates with the Windows Explorer menus, displaying archive files as folders and providing a toolbar with drag-and-drop functions. You can also alternate between a single or dual-pane view.
7-Zip offers several features that make it one of the best compression software options around. For example:
Open architecture—The source code uses the GNU LGPL license, while the unRAR code is under a mixed license with GNU LGPL + unRAR restrictions.
High compression ratio—Using its own 7z format with LZMA and LZMA2 compression, 7-Zip’s compression ratio is up to 40% higher than its peers. For ZIP and GZIP formats, 7-Zip provides a compression ratio that is 2-10% better than PKZip and WinZip.
Strong AES-256 encryption—This includes both password protection of files and encryption of file names.
Ability to use may compression, conversion, or encryption methods—For example 7-Zip:
Supports packing and unpacking for 7z, XZ, BZIP2, GZIP, TAR, ZIP, and WIM.
Supports unpacking only for ARJ, CAB, CHM, CPIO, CramFS, DEB, DMG, FAT, HFS, ISO, LZH, LZMA, MBR, MSI, NSIS, NTFS, RAR, RPM, SquashFS, UDF, VHD, WIM, XAR, and Z.
Supports a self-extracting capability for 7z format.
7-Zip is a file archiver with a high compression ratio. You can use 7-Zip on any computer, including a computer in a commercial organization. You don't need to register or pay for 7-Zip. 7-Zip works for Windows 7, Vista, XP, 2008, 2003, 2000, NT, ME, and 98. And there is a port of the command line version to Linux/Unix. Most of the source code is under the GNU LGPL license. The unRAR code is under a mixed license with GNU LGPL + unRAR restrictions. Check the license for details.
Program crashes with a memory error on large files. I tried to extract data from a 1.8GB file, but it crashes with a memory allocation error:
(process:4878): GLib-ERROR (recursed) **: gmem.c:239: failed to allocate 4096 bytes
This happened using the command-line tool mdb-export.