At some point, everybody receives a file they're not sure how to open. Windows doesn't natively support all file formats, so sometimes you need special software. The RAR format is a very common example. It's pretty widely used, but Windows 11 can't open this type of file without a dedicated program since it's a proprietary file format.
RAR was developed in 1993 by Eugene Roshal for compressed archives, similar to ZIP files you can create with Windows. It can contain numerous other files, much like a folder, but those files are compressed to take up less space on a disk. This can make it easier to share folders with other people since you only have to transfer a single file, and it's smaller than the sum of those individual files would be.
While there are a few programs that can open these files now, one of the best ways to do it is using WinRAR, which is also developed by Roshal. WinRAR was first released in 1995, and it still gets frequent updates, supporting not only RAR files but many other compressed archives, like ZIP, 7z, and more.
As we've mentioned, various programs can open RAR files these days, but for this guide, we'll stick with the original one. WinRAR was designed specifically to work with RAR files, and it's still one of the best ways to open them. Here's what you need to do:
You'll also see programs for Mac and Linux here, but they're only command-line based. There's also RAR for Android, in case you want to open RAR files on your phone. And if you want WinRAR in a different language, there are various translated versions below that, too.
And that's all you need to know about how to open RAR files on your Windows PC. If you want to extract entire files without opening them, you can also right-click a RAR file in File Explorer, move your mouse over WinRAR in the context menu, and select one of the extraction options available. WinRAR already integrates with the new Windows 11 context menus, so it all works seamlessly.
You can also easily create RAR archives yourself with WinRAR. You can select the files or folders you want to compress, mouse over WinRAR, and choose one of the options to add the files to an archive.
Looking for other kinds of help with your PC? We have guides on how to download YouTube videos, how to block websites, or even how to create fillable PDFs. Check them out if those are things you're interested in.
A RAR file contains one or more files that have been compressed into a smaller file using WinRAR software. The .rar file extension name stands for Roshal Archive, meaning a high quality compressed file (also known as an archive) that can be encrypted with a password.
RAR files are used to transfer or store huge files, like when you download your data from Google or Facebook, or send gigabytes of data as image, audio, or video files. Compressing the files into a single RAR file lets you speed up transfer and download times.
Each volume is numbered in the file name (volname.part001.rar, volname.part002.rar). Then, when you uncompress your files, you need to have all volumes in the same location and extract them in chronological order.
The biggest difference between RAR and ZIP is that .zip formatted files are more widely used because the file format is flexible and can work with any operating system. Although both file types allow you to compress large amounts of data, here are some of the other differences between how the RAR and ZIP formats compress files:
Encryption: Both file formats support password protection, but they use different encryption methods. RAR uses AES-128 encryption, which is generally superior to the ZIP 2.0 encryption algorithm. If you use 7-Zip to create your ZIP files, you get AES-256 encryption, which is more secure than both RAR and regular ZIP files. With RAR, you can also lock encrypted archives to prevent accidental modification of your files.
Error recovery: Like other file types, RAR and ZIP can get corrupted, making the content they contain inaccessible. If this occurs, you can repair the damage using RAR repair software, which allows you to reconstruct damaged data.
WinZip: A paid app for RAR and ZIP file management available on Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. Download it from WinZip, the App Store, or Google Play. Then select Use Evaluation Version for a free trial.
WinRAR is an app for Windows 11, 10, 8, and 7 that you can download and use for free during the trial period to open RAR files. It was created by the same developers who came up with the .rar file format, and you can also use it to create RAR files.
Use the drop-down menu to select the folder with the files you want to compress into a RAR file. Select the individual files and folders you want to include in the RAR file. (Hold down the Ctrl key on your keyboard to select multiple files).
Click Add. You can also edit the file name for the new RAR file. Check that the Archive format is set to RAR. Here, you can also adjust compression level, volume size, and other archiving parameters. Click OK to create the new RAR file.
No matter where you want to create, manage, or download RAR files, you need to shield yourself from any cyber threats they might be hiding. With comprehensive file scanning and malware detection, Avast One makes it easy to confidently create and extract RAR files on any device. Install Avast today to keep your PC, laptop, or phone virus-free.
No matter where you want to create, manage, or download RAR files, you need to shield yourself from any cyber threats they might be hiding. With comprehensive file scanning and malware detection, Avast Free Antivirus makes it easy to confidently create and extract RAR files on any device. Install Avast today to keep your PC, laptop, or phone virus-free.
A RAR file is a data container that stores oneor more compressed files. People and companies use RAR files to compress theirfiles so they will be smaller. This way, instead of downloading several filesindividually, you can download them all at once.
In other words, RAR (which is short for RoshalArchive) is like a normal folder on your computer, which you use to organizeseveral other folders, documents, images, and other files. But what makes a RARfile different from any other regular folder on your computer is that itrequires special software to open its contents.
You can open RAR files on Windows using variousapplications. The most preferred is WinRAR because it was created by the same developers behind the RAR fileformat, and it provides complete support for RAR files. This means that WinRARnot only allows you to extract RAR files, but it allows you to create them aswell.
WinRAR is a popular trialware program that is used to extract files from a folder or compress them into one. Released in 1995, WinRAR is a staple compression and extraction software that users have on their devices. The tool is compatible with Android, iOS, Linux, and Microsoft Windows electronics on both 32-bit and 64-bit equipment. People can use WinRAR on Windows 11, 10, XP, Vista 7, 8, and 9.
People have the ability to either buy the paid program or download trial version of WinRAR. The option that does not cost money prompts users to convert into the purchasable version. WinRAR notifies people of the benefits of paying for the tool through frequent pop-ups. If users are tolerable of the notifications, then they are able to use the free version inevitably.
While Microsoft Windows computers and laptops are equipped with native compression and extraction capabilities, the ability to manage RAR files is not possible. WinRAR is a hub for file management. The application has an intuitive interface, which lets people easily and quickly navigate the system of compressing and extracting data into RAR and ZIP files.
The WinRAR download is completely safe to install. While the program is secure, you should use caution when downloading external files from emails or website browsers to zip and unzip them with WinRAR. Certain files can be malicious and disrupt the WinRAR application and the Android, Mac, or PC device.
WinZip, 7-Zip, and PeaZip are alternate software options to compress and extract files. WinZIP and WinRAR are both trialware. They are initially offered for free and then suggest payments to continue using the services. 7-Zip and PeaZIP are freeware. 7-Zip is a comparable alternative to WinRAR because of its straightforward user interfaces and capabilities.
The cross-platform archiver performs essential operations: packing and unpacking files and folders. The system has a simple user interface with tools of assistance: the Wizard feature which guides novices through the best process. WinRAR functions with RAR and ZIP files lets people view and create content. The app is available in a multitude of languages: English, Chinese, Indonesian, Turkish, etc.
You might be wondering why RAR files are used instead of ZIP files which are immediately accessible natively through the computer. The difference is that RAR supports error recovery and multi-volume archives making it much easier to transfer and download complex networks of files and folders.
So when would you use a RAR file? To start with, compiling a long list of files like images or audio files into a single downloadable RAR file will speed up the transfer and download times when sending it to a friend or colleague.
WinZip will then create the Zip file as per your instructions, and you can share it or store it as you like. The size of the archive should be much less than the sum of the individual files thanks to its high quality compression, giving you the option to upload and download it quickly. 781b155fdc