This was originally published on October 7, 1995. WinZip was the first GUI based utility to bring compression to the masses. It’s funny, as I still have a very nice WinZip lithograph framed in my office. Today, WinZip has fallen to the wayside in terms of popularity, but it’s still a great little utility.
The ZIP compression method is the most popular compression method ever. Even if you don’t know what ZIP is by reading this, you’ve probably come across files or disks that were ZIPPED. When you ZIP a file or collection of files you squeeze them down to maybe 10, 20 or 30 percent of their original size. This is great, but can lead to trouble when you need to look inside the ZIP file.
OK, you could drop to DOS and issue some cryptic ZIP command and view the data, but why not use WinZip from Nico Mak Computing? Now in the 6th version, WinZip has transcended all other utilities that deal with ZIP files. It is in a class by itself. Not only will WinZip let you view inside the ZIP file, but it will also let you view each of the files in their native format. For example, if you have an Excel and Word file compressed with ZIP, WinZip will allow you to view the Excel file in Excel and the Word file in Word. What a timesaving bonus!
WinZip isn’t just timesaving, but also money saving as well. It will perform all the normal functions of the PKZIP/PKUNZIP package from PKWare without having to buy PKZIP/PKUNZIP! You can now benefit from the compression standard of ZIP without having to buy the original.
WinZip also has a major benefit not found in many other utilities … native versions in the three major Windows platforms. Yep. A Version exists in Windows 3.1, Windows NT and Windows 95. You could buy multiple copies for the office and not have to worry that your handicapping your Windows NT machine with software designed for Windows 3.1.
WinZip may sound like a utility that should ship with every PC, right? It should, but take a look at these other features:
- Windows 95 long filename support.
- Windows 95 Explorer support.
- All versions support ARC, ARJ and LZH compressed files.
- All versions support popular virus scanners.
- All versions support the TAR, gzip and Unix compress Unix compressed files.
- All versions support drag and dropping of files.
- All versions sport context sensitive on-line help.
The only problem I have with WinZip is that you need to keep the application open you are viewing the files with before you close WinZip. For instance, let’s say you have opened a compressed file and are looking at an AmiPro file inside. If you try to close WinZip you get an error message and a question. You can’t just close WinZip. Sometimes I have multiple files open from various compressed files and this error/question phase gets in the way.
Well, now that you know you’re missing out on the hottest Windows platform utility ever invented, what should you do? Get a copy and try it out! If you like it you can register it through so many methods you won’t have an excuse for owning a copy or two at $29.00. You will easily make up the money in time saved dealing with compressed files.
WinZip is a rock solid, steady utility for all platforms of Windows. Your toolbox isn’t complete if you don’t own a copy of WinZip, the compression master!
Nico Mak Computing, Inc.
Bristol, CT 06011
CompuServe: GO WINZIP