The best free programs to create compressed archives, zip but not only.
Agile and snappy, 7-Zip it is considered by many users and experts in the sector the best free alternative to WinRAR, WinZip and all the most renowned software for creating and managing compressed archives. It is completely in Italian and supports the creation of archives not only in ZIP format but also in 7z, XZ, BZIP2, GZIP, TAR and WIM.
Its interface is not well-kept but it is extremely easy to use even for less experienced users. For reading, the supported formats are even more: ARJ, CAB, CHM, CPIO, CramFS, DEB, DMG, FAT, HFS, ISO, LZH, LZMA, MBR, MSI, NSIS, NTFS, RAR, RPM, SquashFS, UDF , VHD, WIM, XAR and Z. Download from here.
Hamster Free Zip Archiver
Hamster Free ZIP Archiver focuses on graphic beauty and ease of use that make it one of the free zipping programs most suitable for less experienced users. It allows you to create compressed archives with a simple drag-and-drop files to be zipped and is also compatible with Mac OS X.
It supports all major archive formats in the reading phase and includes predefined functions to create archives to be sent via e-mail or shared on the Internet via hosting services, such as RapidShare. It is completely in Italian. Download from here.
IZArc is famous for being one of the free zipping programs with support for reading the largest number of files. This is the complete list of supported archives: 7-ZIP, A, ACE, ARC, ARJ, B64, BH, BIN, BZ2, BZA, C2D, CAB, CDI, CPIO, DEB, ENC, GCA, GZ, GZA, HA , IMG, ISO, JAR, LHA, LIB, LZH, MDF, MBF, MIM, NRG, PAK, PDI, PK3, RAR, RPM, TAR, TAZ, TBZ, TGZ, TZ, UUE, WAR, XXE, YZ1, Z , ZIP, ZOO. Here too there is no lack of support for image files.
The program is very simple to use, it integrates perfectly into the Windows shell and allows you to create archives in zip format with a simple right click on the files or folders to be zipped. Download from here.
Spinzip is a small free and no-install software that focuses on essentiality. It is very light, but incredibly powerful. It allows you to create zip archives from any file or folder with extra options related to password protection and the creation of multi-volume archives for easier distribution of the latter.
Its interface is not translated into Italian, but the immediacy that distinguishes it makes it very easy to use even for those who do not know English well. Always keep within reach of a USB key. Download from here.
A simple but very powerful free software that allows you to create archives in a wide range of formats, such as 7-ZIP, BH, BZ2, CAB, JAR, LHA (LZH), SQX, TAR, TGZ, YZ1 and ZIP. It has a neat and very linear user interface with Windows XP style icons.
It doesn't shine for being very light on RAM, but it is able to open and manage a large amount of different archives: ZIP, 7-ZIP, A, ACE, ARC, ARJ, BH, BZ2, CAB, CPIO, DEB, GCA, GZ , IMP, JAR, LHA (LZH), LIB, RAR, RPM, SQX, TAR, TGZ, TBZ, TAZ, YZ1 and ZOO, plus CD and DVD images. Download from here.
Un free zipping program made in Italy that does not stand out for its lightness but for the enormous potential it has and for the very accurate user interface. It allows you to create compressed archives in ZIP format and in other very popular formats (such as 7Z) and in reading it supports practically any existing archive format, including CD and DVD image files.
It is available in two versions (both free): the Standard and Suite. The Suite version also includes an FTP client, a solution to create photo albums and a series of additional skins to customize the program interface. Download from here.