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A free file archiver for extremely high compression

4.8 Stars (695)
120,098 Downloads (This Week)
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Editor's Review

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.

Product Details

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.
  • Integrates with Windows Shell—Using its menu options, you can integrate 7-Zip to the Windows Shell menu.
  • Powerful file manager and command line versions—There’s also a plugin for FAR Manager.
  • Localizations for 79 languages—This kind of support is why 7-Zip is the world’s favorite free compression software.



7-Zip is easy to download and use, it opens and compresses most everything, and is has a Windows shell extension. The interface is a little sparse and so are the instructions, but the program works like a charm anyway.

Quick Specs

  • Version: 9.22
  • Date added: March 2, 2013
  • Operating systems: Windows
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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.

7-Zip Web Site


User Ratings

ease 1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5 4 / 5
features 1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5 4 / 5
design 1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5 3 / 5
support 1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5 3 / 5
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User Reviews

  • tricky75
    1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5

    I'm a huge fan of 7z. Good compression ratio and easy to use. One bummer is though, the poor mac support, or rather the lack thereof. I could get my hands on the command line version for mac, but it's compiled by somebody else, so is it outdated or not? (Another bummer is that I need an .so file on Mac. When called with full pathname, that .so works. For my own easy I placed 7z in a path dir, but that did not work the way it should. It can then not find the path any more). Not much of a problem for a command line user like me (since archiving on Mac through the GUI has never been worked out the way it should, no matter which archiver you have) :)

    Posted 07/18/2015
  • samselbr
    1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5

    Excellent - performance and desing

    Posted 05/27/2015
  • notatroll
    1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5

    Great program. But can't you make a better UI? Looks very ugly. File manager is also so poor. Many people have requested you for so many years but you have done nothing. Please make a better UI like that of Windows file manager. A better UI will increase the users and you will get more support as well. So please make a better UI soon.

    Posted 10/19/2014
  • twaynes
    1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5

    7zip is a great product but it's being pushed so covertly and heavily by so many sites, many of the supposedly very reliable, and even purchases apps, I refuse to use it. I never know what some download may do to my current install and thus avoid it. Yes, I have used it before all the crap pushing started and from what I can see it is still a great app. Can't the miscreants behind all that be crushed somehow?

    Posted 08/23/2014
  • extremegtx
    1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5


    Posted 07/25/2014
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Additional Project Details



Intended Audience

System Administrators, Developers, End Users/Desktop

User Interface

Win32 (MS Windows), Command-line

Programming Language

C++, C


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