How to use 7-zip to extract files

Let’s talk about how to use 7-zip to extract files. 7-zip is a free and open source archiver software. It can create archives in famous file formats such as 7-z and zip. It can also extract lot of file formats such as rar, 7-z, zip and many more. And if that sounds a bit complex, don’t worry! Using 7-zip to extract files is a relatively simple process.

What is an archive?

In layman’s terms, an archive is a set of files and folders neatly packaged in a single file (or multiples files).

What is extracting an archive?

It is like this, imagine you have a cabinet and lot of files inside it. You unpack the cabinet on to your bed. If the cabinet is the archive file, then the files inside the cabinet are the files that you want to get to, then extracting is dumping the content of the cabinet on to your bed.

Installing 7-zip

First you need to head on to the 7-zip download page. As you can see there are multiple options.

Download 7-zipDownload options:

  1. 32bit beta version – use this if your machine is 32bit and you want to try the bleeding edge version.
  2. 64bit beta version – use this if your machine is 64bit and you want to try the bleeding edge version.
  3. 32bit stable version – use this if your machine is 32bit.
  4. 64bit stable version – use this if your machine is 64bit.

If you don’t know about your system architecture I suggest that you use 32bit stable version (No 3 in above image).

Once you have downloaded it you need to double click it. If a window pops up asking for use authentication click yes.

7-zip Windows UACAfter clicking yes, you should see the installation window.

Install 7-zipClick the install button.

Installing 7-zipAfter the installation is completed. Click the close button.

How to use 7-zip to extract files : Extracting archives

Extract archive 7-zipOnce you right click on an archive. Navigate to 7-Zip and then click “Extract to …”. This will extract the file to a folder in current directory.

7-zip extract progress After the progress is completed you can view the files. Woo hoo ! You have successfully extracted files.

Did you like this article? Go ahead and check out our other programming articles! We have tutorials on Python, Java, JavaScript and cool tips and tricks that can help you get stuff done.

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