Quickly unzip a .zip file to extract the contents to your device
This wikiHow teaches you how to open and extract a Zip file on your computer, smartphone, or tablet. ZIP files are used to compress files into smaller versions, making them easier to store and transport. To view and use the ZIP file’s contents in the proper format, you’ll need to extract (or “unzip”) the ZIP file into a regular folder. Fortunately, Windows, Mac, iPhone, and Android all come with the built-in ability to unzip Zip files.
[Edit]things you should know
- On Windows, double-click the ZIP file, then click “Extract All” in File Explorer.
- On a Mac, double-click the zip file to extract it to the same folder location.
- On iPhone, find the Zip file in the Files app and tap it to extract the contents.
- On Android, find the ZIP file in the Files by Google app. Then tap the file and choose “Extract”.
- Right-click on the zip file and select . This will open a new window with extraction options. This method uses Windows’ built-in file extraction feature to open the ZIP file. It works for Windows 8, 10 and 11.
- If you want the Extracted Files folder to open automatically, check the “Show extracted files on completion” box.
- Note that if you have installed a third-party file archiver, you may also have the option to extract the ZIP file using that software.
- Opening a RAR file on Windows will require additional software.
- Select the extraction location if necessary. By default, your zip file will extract its contents to the same folder it is located in (for example, if the zip file is on the desktop, the extracted folder will also appear on the desktop). If you want to extract the folder to a different location, do the following:
- Click Browse… To the right of the text box in the middle of the window.
- Choose a folder.
- Click select folder in the lower-right corner.
- Click. It’s under the window. Doing so extracts the contents of the zip file into a regular folder.
- Need to create a ZIP file? Check out our expert guide to creating a ZIP file here.
- Move the zip file if necessary. Unzipping a ZIP file on Mac is easy using the built-in tool! The contents of the zip file will automatically be extracted to the folder in which the zip file is located. To copy the ZIP file to a different location, do the following:
- Click on the ZIP file to select it.
- Click edit at the top of the screen.
- Click copy in the drop-down menu.
- Go to the folder where you want to extract the zip file.
- Click editthen press Paste it in the drop-down menu.
- Double-click the zip file. Doing so will begin extracting the ZIP file to a regular folder in your current location.
- Wait for the extracted folder to open. Once the extraction of the ZIP file is finished, a new folder will open to display the extracted files.
- If you’re trying to send someone a lot of files, you can zip the file folder and email the compressed zip file.
[Edit]on iPhone/iPad/iPod touch
- Open the Files app. It’s a blue folder icon on a white background. The iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch have a built-in ability to unzip files.
- Navigate to the zip file. If the ZIP file was downloaded directly to your device, tap on my iphone Under the “Location” section. Then look in your folder to find the ZIP file.
- Tap on Zip file. This will immediately extract the contents of the zip file to a new folder in the same file location.
- You can rename a folder by tapping and holding on the folder, then selecting change name,
- Tap New Folder. This will display the files extracted from the ZIP file.
- Download the zip file if necessary. If the ZIP file isn’t already on your Android, you can download it by going to its location and tapping on its download link. This will place the zip file in your Android’s “Downloads” folder.
- If the ZIP file is in Google Drive, long-press the ZIP file, then tap download in the resulting menu.
- If the zip file is in Gmail, tap the “Download” icon next to the folder’s name in the email.
- Open the Files by Google app. It’s a blue rectangle in front of a green rectangle.
- Tap . This will allow you to find the ZIP file.
- Navigate to the zip file. This will usually be in your “Downloads” folder.
- Tap on Zip file. This will show you the contents inside the file.
- Tap . A preview of the files will appear on the screen.
- Tap . A folder containing the files extracted from the ZIP file will appear in the same location as the ZIP file.
- Tap New Folder. It will display the extracted files.
- You can delete a ZIP file after you’ve extracted its contents.
- While you may be able to view and open the contents of a ZIP file when the ZIP file is compressed, the files may appear corrupted or otherwise incomplete until you extract them.
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