How to Use File Compression in Windows 7

By Tara Cantore

Windows 7 has built-in compression features that let you shrink and expand files according to your needs. Compression is an important part of sending and receiving files through the Web, email and stored backups. Windows 7 comes with zip-based file-compression features that let you create and store files in the zip format.

Uncompress Files

Step 1

Open the location on your computer where your compressed zip file is stored.

Step 2

Double-click the file to open it.

Step 3

Select the files or folders from the archive to their final location. Press "Ctrl"+"A" on the keyboard to select all files in the archive.

Step 4

Drag and drop the file or files to their final location.

Compress Files

Step 1

Open the location holding the files or folders you want to compress.

Step 2

Select the file(s) or folder(s) you want to compress with your mouse or keyboard.

Step 3

Right-click a highlighted file, click "Send To" and then "Compressed (Zipped) Folder."

Step 4

Type a name for the folder in the automatically highlighted file name item.

Step 5

Press "Enter" to save the file name changes. You have now created a compressed zip file.

Tips & Warnings

  • Drag and drop items onto an existing zip archive to add the item to it.