How to create ZIP files on Windows, Mac OS and Linux

How to create zip file on windows step 3: wait for d folder to be created
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Franklin Izuchukwu

If you want to create a zip file but don’t know where to begin from, here is a guide on zipping and unzipping files on Windows, Linux and Mac operating systems.

File compression is a technique that comes in handy on special circumstances. When you compress a file, unnecessary elements in the files are removed to reduce the file size.

You can compress your files to save old photos that you currently do not need but occupies large storage space; you could also compress your file to keep it away from prying eyes (privacy) or to save mobile data and time when you want to email a large file.

Below are practical steps to take and create a zip file.

Windows Platform

1. Create a folder

The quickest way to create a zip file is to place all of the files that you want to archive into one folder. You can place multiple files and folders into the folder that you are creating the ZIP file from.

Rename the folder to whatever you want the ZIP file to be named.

Step 1 - How to create a zip file on windows, create a folder

2. Right-click on the folder

 Hover your cursor over the “Send to” option. This will open a new sub-menu. Select the “Compressed (zipped) folder” option. You can also select multiple files in your file explorer, right-click on one of them, and then follow the above steps. The resulting ZIP file will contain all of the selected files and will be named after the file that you right-clicked on.

How to create zip file on windows set 2: right click on the folder

3. Wait for the folder to be created

If you are adding a lot of files to the new ZIP file, it may take a few moments to create it. A progress bar will appear as files are added. Once the process is complete, the ZIP file will appear in the same location as the original folder.

How to create zip file on windows step 3: wait for d folder to be created

Mac OS Platform

1. Create a folder

The quickest way to create a zip file is to place all of the files that you want to archive into one folder. You can place multiple files and folders into the folder that you are creating the ZIP file from.Rename the folder to whatever you want the ZIP file to be named.

How to create a zip on Mac OS step 1 - Create a new folder

2. Right-click on the folder and select compress

Click the "Compress" option. The folder will be compressed into a ZIP file. The new ZIP file will be located in the same location as the folder that you compressed. You can also select multiple files in your file explorer, right-click on one of them, and then follow the above steps.

The resulting ZIP file will contain all of the selected files and will be named "Archive.zip".

How to create zip file on Mac OS step 2 - Right click on the folder and select compress

Linux Plaform

1. Open the terminal

Its symbol looks like a black rectangle with some bright characters on it. On some platforms, it is called Konsole, xTerm, or something similar. You can open the terminal using keyboard combination keys `Ctrl + Alt + T`

How to create Zip File in Linux step 1 - launch the terminal using the app search or using keyboard combination keys Ctrl + Alt + T

2. Create a directory

In the termnal, use the `mkdir` command to create a folder, the command takes the name of the directory as argument. If, for example, you want to create a directory named "zipArchive", then on the terminal, type in `mkdir zipArchive`.

lHow to create zip file in Linux step 2 - create a directory or folder using mkdir command

3. Move or copy all files that should be in the ZIP file into the directory

  • Files are moved with the `mv` command. Moving a file means that it is no longer in its original place, and instead in the place you specified.
  • Copying a file is done with the `cp` command. It makes a copy of the file in the place you specified, but the same file is still on its original position. Note that you need to use `cp -r` to copy a directory where -r stands for recursive copy
  • Both commands take the original position as first argument, and where to copy or move as second. For example, to move a file called "textToArchive.txt" to the directory "zipArchive", write: `mv textToArchive.txt zipArchive`

How to create zip file in Linux step 3 - Copy all files to zip to the created folder using the cp command

4. Zip the directory

This is done with the `zip -r` command. It takes the name of the zip file as first argument and the name of the folder to archive as second. If you, for example, want to archive the directory "zipArchive" to a zip file called "zipArchive.zip", write: `zip -r zipArchive.zip zipArchive`. It will print out the names of all files added to the archive, so you can check if everything you want is included.

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