How to Compress a File

Boman Rustom IraniThere are times when it becomes necessary to compress files on a computer. When sending files on the internet or transferring files from one computer to another, it is best to compress the files. When a file is compressed, it is stored in a different way so that the file becomes smaller and in turn requires less disk space. The files remain unchanged. All that you do is take a large amount of files, place in a small compressed file and send or store for future use. It is just like folding a long letter and placing it in an envelope. The file appears small but when it is received and opened, it returns to its original size. A compressed file becomes easier to send through email and is also transferred more quickly. WinZip is the program that is commonly used to compress files although other programs like WinRar are also very popular. Here are the directions on how to compress a file:


  1. Double-click on the WinZip icon on your desktop.
  2. Click Use Evaluation Version. The WinZip wizard will appear to guide you through the process.
  3. Click next and then click Create a New Zip File.
  4. Choose a file name like ZipTest or if you like, click Browse to select a different folder. Enter a file name. Click OK and then click Next.
  5. Click the button marked Add Files to select and add the files that you want to compress. A window will be displayed showing the available folders and files on your computer. Another way to add the files is to click on them and drag them into the empty box. Add all the files you want to compress using any of the two methods.
  6. After you have added all the files you want to compress, click Zip Now.
  7. Wait while the files are compressed and then click Finish.
  8. The program will close after it has finished zipping the files. To locate the newly compressed folder, go to My Documents.
  9. If you had selected the ZipTest folder earlier, you should see it in My Documents. If you typed a name for your folder, look for that name in My Documents. The files will have the extension .zip.

Tips and warnings

  • To open the folder, double click it as you click a normal file. It will open to display the files. You can drag out the files you want to use. They will be extracted normally and will be displayed in their original state.
  • To send the files via email, all you have to do is attach the zipped folder to the mail and send it to your recipient. They will need a program either WinRar or WinZip to decompress and open the files.
  • If you do not have an archiving program on your computer, you can download a trial version of the program at and install it. The trial version will last only for several days.

Charlie is free lancer writer and content builder of many Technology sites and has written many useful genuine articles.