The need to transfer files is constantly growing. But some files are extremely large and takes ages to transfer, particularly the ones containing software. This challenge has brought about the wide usage of archive file formats like CAB. You've probably received or downloaded a file with the extension .cab. Considering how rare this format is, many are afraid to extract such files because they suspect they might be malicious, which is not the case.
CAB file, short for Windows cabinet file, is an archive file format used in the Windows platform. These files support different compression methods such as Quantum and LZX, allowing you to store multiple files and folders and package them into one file. CAB files typically contain various Windows installations that might involve device drivers or system files. The installation engine extracts these files to use them to set up various software and hardware. Given such sensitive data, features like embedded digital certificates ensure file integrity. The reason for using the CAB file format is it reduces file size and the associated download time for Web content.
Windows treat CAB files as a folder, allowing you to open and view them. All you have to do is:
That being said, in current Windows configurations, you'll no longer be able to extract these files with the default win archive software. Since this archive format is not as popular as RAR or ZIP, many users don't know how to extract it.
There are several methods to extract CAB files on a computer running Windows OS. One of the most popular tools is using WinZIP.
In some instances, especially if the file is too large, the process might be unsuccessful because the file is corrupted. You'll need reliable recovery software in such a case. The above procedure is simply a guide. Due to the differences in the various versions of Windows, it's important to follow the extraction tool's instructions for your version of Windows.
Alternative methods for extracting CAB files include using:
Extracting CAB files is pretty simple, but if you want to extract and manage these files like a pro, the WinZip software is your best bet. WinZip is well-known file archive software, and it offers native support for CAB files and other popular archive formats such as RAR, ZIP, 7Z, ISO, TAR, and IMG. WinZip can compress any file; plus, there's an encryption option available to keep your files protected.
CAB files store important sensitive data; as such, it's best to extract them only when necessary. Secondly, it's also important to view the archived file first to inspect its contents before considering the need for real extraction.