How to Deal with RAR Files in Windows

Open Rar Files Featured

RAR (Roshal Archive) is a proprietary archive files format that has been around since 1993. It is named after Eugene Roshal, a Russian software engineer. Windows does not support RAR files by default, which means they can only be created and opened by third-party software.

The following tools help you deal with RAR files in Windows.

1. WinRAR

Since we are dealing with RAR files, the most obvious choice is its default creation/extraction tool – WinRAR. Apart from Windows, WinRAR also supports Mac, Linux, BSD and Android.

During installation, you are given the choice to associate WinRAR with a variety of file formats including .rar, .zip, .7z, .gz, .tar and .zipx. This makes WinRAR one of the most versatile software tools.

Winrar Setup File Extensions

It is very easy to open or extract RAR files using a simple right-click as shown below.

Open Rar Files

To create a RAR file, select all the files you want to compress and add them to a .rar option from a right click. It directly assumes the folder name.

Add To Dot Rar Winrar

You can view the RAR file contents directly from an open WinRAR window.

View Rar Files Contents Winrar

Although WinRAR comes with only a 40-day free trial, the “evaluation” lasts forever with very light pressure to pay.

2. 7-Zip

When it comes to compressed archives, you can’t miss out 7-zip. It is almost the best tool out there for handling compressed files, including RAR files. It is available for all leading operating systems.

7 Zip Download

You can open RAR files by right-clicking the .rar extension. Select the individual files to extract them in the same folder.

7 Zip Rar Files Open

When you add the files to 7-Zip for archiving, you get additional options such as entering a password and the compression level. These speeds vary from “fastest” to “ultra.”

7 Zip Archival

3. WinZip

One of the earliest and most well-known compressor software, WinZip hardly needs any introduction. Its earliest versions were free, but the latest trialware expires in 21 days. To download and install WinZip, visit the official site and click “try it free.”

Once installed, you can create the archived file by selecting the files from a folder and clicking “add to zip.”

Select Files For Zipping

You will get an instant report about the space saved using file compression.

File Compression Winzip

To open a RAR file, right-click on it and go to WinZip followed by “Unzip to” and do so to the same folder. Its contents will be automatically saved.

Open Rar Files Winzip

4. B1 Free Archiver

B1 Free Archiver is an absolutely free tool that allows you to open RAR files easily. The tool describes itself as “friendly” and “simple,” and there is little doubt after you start using it. Apart from Windows, B1 is also available for Linux, Mac and Android.

B1 Free Archiver

To create free archives, select the files and click “Create.” You will get a variety of zipped file format options.

B1 Free Archiver Select Files

Of course, to extract .rar files, you only need to right-click and select the desired option. The RAR file contents will open in the same folder.

Open Rar Files B1

Conclusion

Since RAR is one of the most popular compressed file formats after ZIP, you will constantly receive it if you download a lot of files online. The above tools will allow you to better handle your RAR files, be it for creation or extraction.

Which is your favorite RAR extraction tool? Let us know in the comments below.

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3 comments

  1. WinZip

    I don’t understand this. Why would anyone spend even a dime on something that could be had for free? Only a two bit celebrity with more money than sense.

    WinZip was useful a long, long time ago. Not anymore.

  2. I have just one question. What’s the real difference between compressing a file in. Zip as against Rar? I can Google but I need a sound technical perspective on which format is better. Anybody?

    1. The compression performance of RAR is slightly better than ZIP that is why it is preferred by developers. ZIP files have more tools that support them, so they can be easily created and are thus, more widely available. In comparison, you can only use WinRAR to create a RAR file although other software extract them as well. So, your receivers do not require a WinRAR program to view your files.

      Further, according to their website, https://www.win-rar.com/features.html

      “WinRAR puts you ahead of the crowd when it comes to compression. By consistently creating smaller archives, WinRAR is often faster than the competition. This will save you disk space, transmission costs AND valuable working time as well.”

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