Zip File Converter: The Complete Guide to Converting Zip Files

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ZIP files are useful file types that can help you store and transfer grouped files in a lossless compressed format for faster, easier file transfers, whether it's happening all on your hard drive, going from one computer to another, or being sent across the internet to another recipient.

While ZIP files are handy tools to make a grouped collection of files take up less space, using this file type effectively also requires that you know how to convert your files to a ZIP format. Continue reading to learn how.

What is a zip file?

A ZIP file is a special file format that computers can use to compress a group of files without permanently altering the original format of the files inside it. ZIP files use a lossless compression algorithm to encode the files within it to "shrink" by eliminating redundant information and storing the files with a space-saving code that can later be reconstructed to restore the files' original formats.

Essentially, ZIP files pack your files down into a small, neat little package that takes up considerably less space and bandwidth from your computer, and it stays compressed in this smaller file size until the zipped folder is "unzipped" to extract the files.

How to convert folders to zip files

To create a ZIP file, there are a few ways you can convert existing folders and files into a compressed folder.

Convert files to a ZIP folder using Windows 10

  1. Open the File Explorer.
  2. Locate and select the file(s) or folder(s) you want to convert to a ZIP format.
  3. Right-click on the highlighted file, folder, or group.
  4. Hover over the Send to option on the menu.
  5. Select Compressed (zipped) folder.
  6. Name your ZIP file and press Enter.

Convert files to a ZIP folder using MacOS

  1. Open the Finder.
  2. Locate and select the file(s) or folder(s) you want to convert to a ZIP format.
  3. Press Ctrl and click on the highlighted file, folder, or group.
  4. Select Compress from the options on the menu. (Following Compress will be the file name of one selected file or folder, or the number of items you have highlighted if you are grouping multiple files or folders at once.
  5. Name your ZIP file and press Enter.

Convert PDFs to a ZIP folder using WinZip

  1. Open WinZip on your computer.
  2. Use the WinZip file pane to highlight the PDF file(s) you want to convert to a ZIP format.
  3. Select Add to Zip.
  4. Save and name your new ZIP file.

Convert selected files within a zipped folder to a new ZIP file using WinZip

  1. Open WinZip on your computer.
  2. Locate and select the file(s) or folder(s) you want from the WinZip file pane.
  3. Right-click the highlighted file, folder, or group.
  4. Hover over the Send Selected Files To option on the menu.
  5. Select New Zip File (from Selected Files).
  6. Use the Send Selected Files dialog menu to:
    1. Change the ZIP file name
    2. Select a compression type
    3. Encrypt the files
    4. Select Conversions, including reducing photos, removing personal data, convert to PDF, combine or sign PDF files, add a watermark to files
    5. Send all or only selected files
    6. Schedule the new ZIP file for deletion at a specified time
  7. Select Send New Zip File once you have made all of your desired changes in the dialog box.
  8. Select a destination folder for the new ZIP file.
  9. Click on the Select Folder option.

The WinZip solution

WinZip offers a unique all-in-one solution for all of your ZIP needs, including creating, converting, encrypting, and extracting zipped folders and additional file types including RAR, 7Z, BZ2, LHA and LZH, CAB, ISO and IMG, TAR, TAZ, GZ, GZIP, TGZ, TZ and Z, UUencoded, XXencoded, MIME, BinHex, and Zipx.

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