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WinZip and WinRAR are classic file managers for compressed archives; however, over the years, these programs have become more commercial and less useful (feel free to disagree — I don’t feel that strongly about it.) In this guide, you’ll learn about three alternatives to WinZip and WinRAR: 7-Zip, PeaZip, and TUGZip.

Zip Tool Alternatives

  • 7-Zip
  • PeaZip
  • TUGZip

7-Zip Features

7-Zip is my compressed-file manager of choice with the following features:

  • High compression ratio in new 7z format with LZMA compression
  • Supported formats:
    • Packing / unpacking: 7z, ZIP, GZIP, BZIP2 and TAR
    • Unpacking only: ARJ, CAB, CHM, CPIO, DEB, DMG, HFS, ISO, LZH, LZMA, MSI, NSIS, RAR, RPM, UDF, WIM, XAR and Z.
  • For ZIP and GZIP formats, 7-Zip provides a compression ratio that is 2-10 % better than the ratio provided by PKZip and WinZip
  • Strong AES-256 encryption in 7z and ZIP formats
  • Self-extracting capability for 7z format
  • Integration with Windows Shell
  • Powerful File Manager
  • Powerful command line version
  • Plugin for FAR Manager
  • Localizations for 74 languages

You can compress files in many different formats, add passwords, and more.

 7-Zip Screenshot 1

7-Zip has a clean interface and is easy to use.

 7-Zip Screenshot 2

Download 7-Zip

Download 7-Zip

PeaZip Features

PeaZip is also popular and comes with the following features:

  • create 7Z, ARC, BZ2, GZ, PAQ/LPAQ, PEA, QUAD/BALZ, TAR, UPX, ZIP
  • extract 87 archive types: ACE, ARJ, CAB, DMG, ISO, LHA, RAR, UDF and many more…
  • discover main features of PeaZip >>

I find the install of PeaZip a little overwhelming with lots of questions that I didn’t really care to answer:

 PeaZip Screenshot 1

PeaZip has a clean interface:

 PeaZip Screenshot 2

PeaZip, like 7-Zip and unlike TUGZip, lets you browse .ISO files — which is really useful for me.

 PeaZip Screenshot 3

Download PeaZip

Download PeaZip

TUGZip Features

TUGZip is the least popular of the other two programs; however, it comes packed with the following features:

  • Supports ZIP, 7-ZIP, A, ACE, ARC, ARJ, BH, BZ2, CAB, CPIO, DEB, GCA, GZ, IMP, JAR, LHA (LZH), LIB, RAR, RPM, SQX, TAR, TGZ, TBZ, TAZ, YZ1 and ZOO archives.
  • Supports BIN, C2D, IMG, ISO and NRG disc-images.
  • Support for external plugins.
  • Windows® shell integration, for example drag & drop, shell context menu and drop handlers.
  • Create 7-ZIP, BH, BZ2, CAB, JAR, LHA (LZH), SQX, TAR, TGZ, YZ1 and ZIP archives.
  • Script support which allows you to make automated backups.
  • Basic features like: add, extract, delete, rename, run, view, checkout, install, test, comment, SFX, virus-scanning, disk-spanning and much more.
  • Repair corrupted ZIP and SQX archives.
  • Can extract multiple archives at once using Multi Extract.
  • Encrypt archives using 6 different algorithms. Blowfish (128-bit), DES (56-bit), Triple DES (168-bit) and Rijndael (128-bit, 192-bit and
    256-bit).
  • Create self-extracting encrypted archives.
  • Automatic updates using the “Web Update” function.

TUGZip lets you pick the interface style; I recommend Explorer view-style

 TUGZip Screenshot 1

I chose to Enable 32-bit alpha blended icons; however, I don’t feel this is the most important thing to ask a user when installing a program.

 TUGZip Screenshot 2

The file browser is simple and clean; however, you can’t open .ISO files.

 TUGZip Screenshot 3

Download TUGZip

Download TUGZip

Conclusion

I usually try and recommend the best program, but in this case, I want you to decide. After using PeaZip and TUGZip exclusively for a week each, I decided to go back to 7-Zip. Which program do you use? Why do you use it? Let us know in the comments.



About Rich

Rich is the owner and creator of Windows Guides; he spends his time breaking things on his PC so he can write how-to guides to fix the problems he creates.

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Comments

15 thoughts on “Zip Tools: The Best Alternatives to WinZip and WinRar”

  1. Ayyanki Rajesh says:

    I use 7zip insted of any other, as its simple and easy to use.

  2. Ayyanki Rajesh says:

    I use 7zip insted of any other, as its simple and easy to use.

  3. Kaveesh Dashora says:

    These are good alternatives but surely and undoubtedly winrar has been and is the best of all

  4. Kaveesh Dashora says:

    These are good alternatives but surely and undoubtedly winrar has been and is the best of all

  5. Ayyanki Rajesh says:

    I use 7zip insted of any other, as its simple and easy to use.

  6. Kaveesh Dashora says:

    These are good alternatives but surely and undoubtedly winrar has been and is the best of all

  7. Onré Patrick says:

    i use izarc, try it, i like it very much, opens everything and very userfriendly
    grtz

  8. Onré Patrick says:

    i use izarc, try it, i like it very much, opens everything and very userfriendly
    grtz

  9. Onré Patrick says:

    i use izarc, try it, i like it very much, opens everything and very userfriendly
    grtz

  10. sefcug says:

    I agree with Ayyanki, in that I use 7zip, due to its simplicity and ease of use. Also, I carry the portable version on a thumbdrive, in case I need it somewhere that will not let me install and use it.

  11. sefcug says:

    I agree with Ayyanki, in that I use 7zip, due to its simplicity and ease of use. Also, I carry the portable version on a thumbdrive, in case I need it somewhere that will not let me install and use it.

  12. sefcug says:

    I agree with Ayyanki, in that I use 7zip, due to its simplicity and ease of use. Also, I carry the portable version on a thumbdrive, in case I need it somewhere that will not let me install and use it.

  13. Tony Poupa says:

    I use 7zip and find it very useful. Unzips all the formats that I can throw at it and 7zip format has great compression ratios. Installation is smooth and has a great, clean interface.
    I must disagree with Kaveesh though, 7zip wins hands down…undoubtedly because it costs nothing! To use WinRAR (legally) you must pay for it, which makes 7zip the undisputed champion of file compression utilities.

  14. Tony Poupa says:

    I use 7zip and find it very useful. Unzips all the formats that I can throw at it and 7zip format has great compression ratios. Installation is smooth and has a great, clean interface.
    I must disagree with Kaveesh though, 7zip wins hands down…undoubtedly because it costs nothing! To use WinRAR (legally) you must pay for it, which makes 7zip the undisputed champion of file compression utilities.

  15. Tony Poupa says:

    I use 7zip and find it very useful. Unzips all the formats that I can throw at it and 7zip format has great compression ratios. Installation is smooth and has a great, clean interface.
    I must disagree with Kaveesh though, 7zip wins hands down…undoubtedly because it costs nothing! To use WinRAR (legally) you must pay for it, which makes 7zip the undisputed champion of file compression utilities.

Comments are closed.


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