Is 7 Zip Free? Everything You Need to Know About This File Archiver
If you work with files and folders on your computer, you may have encountered the need to compress or decompress them. Compressing files reduces their size and makes them easier to store, share, or transfer. Decompressing files restores them to their original state and allows you to access their contents.
There are many tools and programs that can help you with file compression and decompression, but one of the most popular and widely used ones is 7 Zip. 7 Zip is a file archiver that can create and extract various types of archive formats, such as ZIP, RAR, 7Z, TAR, GZIP, and more. But what exactly is 7 Zip, how does it work, and most importantly, is it free? In this article, we will answer these questions and more.
What is 7 Zip?
7 Zip is a free and open-source file archiver that was first released in 1999 by Igor Pavlov. A file archiver is a utility that can place groups of files within compressed containers known as \"archives\". Archives can reduce the size of files, protect them with encryption, split them into smaller parts, or combine them into a single file.
7 Zip has its own archive format called 7Z, which offers a high compression ratio and supports various features such as AES-256 encryption, self-extracting capability, and multiple volumes. However, 7 Zip can also read and write several other archive formats, such as ZIP, RAR, TAR, GZIP, BZIP2, XZ, WIM, ISO, DMG, and more. This makes 7 Zip compatible with most of the existing archives on the internet.
How does 7 Zip work?
7 Zip works by using different compression algorithms to reduce the size of files. Compression algorithms are methods of finding patterns and redundancies in data and replacing them with shorter symbols. The more patterns and redundancies a file has, the more it can be compressed.
7 Zip uses two main compression algorithms: LZMA and LZMA2. These algorithms are based on the Lempel-Ziv-Markov chain algorithm (LZMA), which is one of the most effective compression methods for text data. LZMA and LZMA2 can achieve a high compression ratio by using a large dictionary size and a long match length. A dictionary is a set of symbols that are used to replace repeated sequences of data. A match length is the number of symbols that are replaced by a single symbol from the dictionary.
For example, if a file contains the phrase \"the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog\" multiple times, LZMA can use a dictionary that contains this phrase as a symbol and replace each occurrence with a shorter symbol. This way, the file size can be reduced significantly.
Is 7 Zip free?
The answer is yes. 7 Zip is free software with open source. This means that you can use it on any computer without any restrictions or limitations. You don't need to register or pay for 7 Zip. You can also modify or distribute the source code of 7 Zip under the terms of its license.
The license of 7 Zip is the GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) for most of its code and the BSD 3-clause License for some parts of its code. These licenses allow you to use 7 Zip for personal or commercial purposes as long as you follow their conditions. For example, you must acknowledge the original author of 7 Zip (Igor Pavlov) and provide a copy of the license when you distribute 7 Zip or its modified versions.
However, there is one exception to the free license of 7 Zip. Some parts of the code that are related to the extraction of RAR archives are under the unRAR license. This license restricts you from using these parts of the code for reverse engineering the RAR compression algorithm. This means that you can only use these parts of the code for extracting RAR archives, not for creating them.