For all those who do not know what WinRAR stands for then let me tell you that it is the Windows version of RAR archiver which is used to control and manage Archived files. However, as it is a paid service which provides only 40 days of free trial, you must move to some WinRAR alternative.
10 Best WinRAR Alternative
Therefore, in this very section given below, I have compiled a list of free as well as paid programs which are a wonderful solution for archiving files of desired size and type. These are as handy to use as WinRAR itself and accompanied with some extra features too. You can find out the details right below.
This is the time to be happy because we finally have an open source and free file archiver which is the best WinRAR free alternative you can ever find. One thing which makes it the unique choice is that 7-Zip uses its own 7z archive format for compressing files which is interestingly, better than other formats.
Despite having a format of its own, you can read and write other archive formats through 7-Zip easily making it one of the best WinRAR alternatives ever.
Some of the features provided by 7-Zip are 2-10% better compression ratio than other archivers, restricted packing but various unpacking format supported, self-extracting capability, plugin supported for FAR manager, supports more than 80 languages on its platform and many more.
7-Zip is functional from past 18 years and works on GNU LGPL license but with unRAR restrictions followed. The only problem you are going to incur is that while extracting files you may face some issues as RAR is more popular format than the one 7-Zip supports and it might not work in packing/unpacking.
Compatible with: React OS
You can kiss goodbye to the hassle of keeping both RAR and Zip archiver because PeaZip is a file archiver which can keep an account of all types of file formats. It is a free and open source program which has even its own native file format known as PEA Archive Format.
PeaZip performs tasks like multi-volume split, compression, extraction, authentic encryption and secured file manager and transfer. Apart from direct download, you can use portable package of PeaZip which does not need to be installed.
PeaZip supports formats like 7Z, RAR, TAR, ZIP, CAB etc. which clearly shows that it is functional towards all popular formats of file compressing. Apart from it, there are plenty of other features offered like cross-platform support, user-friendly interface, fast and high compression ratio, opener/extractor for more than 180 archive types etc.
PeaZip is a wonderful WinRAR alternative where without paying a single penny you can get multiple benefits. It even offers two-factor authentication for files including password protection too which is a big factor for listing it out here.
Compatible with: BSD
Bandizip is not only a replacement for WinRAR but it acts as a great WinZip alternative too available support for both the formats for compression/extraction. Like most of the programs listed here, it is also an open source and free program which is quite fast in functioning.
The fast Zip algorithm of Bandizip allows the user to utilize the drag and drop option which saves a lot of time and increases the productivity of the program too.
Talking about the format support then it includes formats like TAR, Zip, RAR, WIM, XPI etc. However, Bandizip does not support RAR compression which can be a big drawback as it is a very popular archiving format. Well, leaving it, Bandizip also offers multi-volume split archives, portable package and free for commercial use too.
BandiZip might not be that competent as a WinRAR alternative but good thing is that it is free and functional enough to support various other file formats. With high speed archiving and self-extracting files, Bandizip stands out amongst other file manager and archivers.
IZArch is amongst the few WinRAR alternative which supports every version of Windows from Vista to 10. This is a free and open source program supporting various popular and other file formats and giving full functionality for compression and extraction of all types of files.
IZArc allows the password protection of files which gives an additional layer of encryption to it. It is also quite functional for on the go work. You can just drop it on your flash drive and the IZArc GO version provides complete file archiving utility on any location without even having to install it on the system.
Other features which comes under IZAarc are drag and drop functionality, support to formats like RAR, TAR, 7Z, ZIP, ARC, CDI, ISO and many more, converts CD images, items sorting and organizing, addition and deletion on existing archive, self-extracting archive, multi-language support etc.
I found IZArc way better than most of the alternatives and file archivers mentioned here. Mainly because despite being a freeware, it has so much to offer and the compatibility and functionality is also kind of amazing.
I don’t know why people prefer to pay for the subscription charges of WinRAR when there are so many open source programs like WinRAR available for free use. One such program is TUGZip. It is a freeware file archiver which handles a number of file formats for encryption and decryption.
Apart from handling the common file formats like RAR, Zip, 7Z, SQX etc. it also supports various other file formats like IMG, ISO, BIN which are disk formats.
Interestingly, it provides 6 layers of encryption which is a high-security level for the files. Other features of TUGZip includes external plugin supported, drag and drop functionality, automated backups through script support, add, extract, delete, run and other basic features included too.
You are not going to find this feature in other WinRAR alternative as TUGZip is capable enough to repair corrupted Zip and SQX file formats too. With supporting multiple extractions at the same time, TUGZip offers a really fast and smooth interface for the users and can also be updated timely through web updates.
Another freeware in this list of WinRAR alternative is AlZip which is an excellent archiver and compression utility. It supports Windows 2000 and later versions and has the capability to support about 40 different types of file formats for unzipping and can do zipping for 8 formats.
Some example of such formats are ZIP, TAR, LZH, JAR etc. Interestingly, ALZip has its own file format too called EGG for which it does both zipping and unzipping.
Other important features of ALZip that you should know are a multi-lingual platform, restoring corrupted files, merging spanned files, password protection for files, create self-extraction archive, user-friendly interface, preview of files enabled and many more.
Talking about the ALZip’s own file format EGG, it too comes with various advantages like Unicode support, compresses even large capacity files, compatibility to various platforms, powerful compression etc. ALZip is quite a powerful tool which must be on your Windows platform.
7. B1 Free Archiver
The next one to joint the list of WinRAR alternatives is B1 Free Archiver which is a 100% free file archiver for both home and commercial use. It supports all the popular file formats like 7Z, XPI, Zip, RAR, DEB, ISO etc. for both compressing and extracting.
B1 Free Archiver gives priority to secure the most and hence apart from the usual layer of encryption, it also provides password protection for files too.
B1 Archive also uses B1 format which is its own simple format. Other features of B1 Archiver are open source program, improved compression algorithm, 256 bit AES encryption, simple and clean interface, cross-platform supported, improved compression ratio, integrity check and many more.
As a WinRAR alternative, B1 Free Archiver works wonderfully and also supports more than 30 languages on its platform. However, when it comes to creation, it can only create its own .b1 and .zip archives only but the extraction and compression applies to all.
Another free WinRAR alternative in this list is jZip. This is one of the best file compression solutions which can be used for free for both home and commercial use. It works on the similar technology as 7-Zip and provides a faster and simpler way to compress and extract files.
However, the only thing you are not going to like about jZip is that it supports selected file formats only. For example, it create, open and extract Zip, TAR, GZip and 7Z while it open and extract RAR and ISO only. Apart from it, there are no other formats supported.
Despite being a limited program, jZip is used heavily because of its lightweight software and reliability factor. It has this really simple and powerful interface which is so quick to get used to.
One thing which you will absolutely love about jZip is that it is a completely freeware program and hence you are not going incur any malware, Trojans and any annoying pop-ups and ads while using it. It also uses a fast compression engine which provides an improved compression ratio as compared to other file archivers.
A simple, fast and completely free alternative to WinRAR, Zipware is a software what you need for your windows platform ASAP. Apart from supporting almost all the file formats, it also supports the very new RAR5 format too. Other formats are GZIP, DEB, XPI, VHD, XZ, ISO, ZIPX and many more.
As Zipware is a freeware you are not going to come across any malware and annoying ads in between at all while using it.
Zipware supports all the versions of Windows from old ones to even Windows 10. Other features of Zipware that you should know are multi-volume split archives, integration with Windows Explorer, password manager associated, prevent tempering because of digital signature and many more.
It is a great thing about Zipware that it can handle any type of files whether small or large in size and that too simultaneously with other files. Zipware is a very lightweight program which released in July, 2017 and pretty soon it became a very popular file archiver.
10. Hamster Free Zip Archiver
This Zip archiver by Hamster is a completely free program for file archiving and managing them. Currently, this WinRAR alternative is providing the ZIP Archiver version 4 which is advanced, reliable and most important packaged with some amazing features.
It provides a simple and convenient archiver with fast processing and supports a number of file formats like 7Z, Zip, RAR, TAR, XPI, SQX, IMG and many more with varying functionality.
Talking about the features of Hamster Free Zip Archiver then they are convenient interface, user-friendly approach, powerful support system, fast in functionality, cloud service for creating copies, easy file sharing and managing, high compression ratio etc.
When talking about the services offered, Hamster somewhere lacks a bit than most of the archiving programs listed above but the simple approach takes over everything. If you want a straightforward lightweight program for file managing and archiving then Zip Archiver 4 by Hamster would not be a bad choice.
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As you all know that WinRAR is accompanied with some really great features and lightning fast speed too but these WinRAR alternative mentioned here might lack them a bit. However, you will still find them simple and comfy to use with some really amazing advantages too.
Interestingly, RAR and Zip both are popular format of compression and there is high possibility that receiver will be having both for the extraction of files. Apart from all, there are some open source programs mentioned here which I am sure you would surely like as they are completely free to use.