When your files take up too much space, or when you want to combine a number of files into one file — like putting all your groceries into one bag — you can use data compression software, and "zip" them into one convenient package.
There are many data compression formats, such as zip, 7zip, tar, and (for Mac computers) dmg. To open a compressed file, you double-click its icon, or drag it into your unarchiving software. It's usually a simple process, but sometimes it doesn't work.
Recently I received a compressed file with a password. I was surprised that it couldn't be opened with the unarchiver that comes with my Mac and Leopard. Fortunately, I found a solution, in an excellent freeware unarchiver named Zipeg.
Zipeg — available in versions for Mac and Windows computers — can extract compressed files in many formats, including ZIP, RAR, ARJ, LHA/LZH, 7z, TAR, GZ, TGZ, BZIP2, CPIO, RPM, ISO, CHM, Z, CBR, CBZ, WAR, EAR and possibly more. In addition, Zipeg lets you look into the compressed file, see what's inside, and extract only the file or files that you need. And Zipeg easily let me open my password-protected compressed file, the moment that I entered the password.
Zipeg has been created by Leo Kuznetsov, who obviously has a great sense of humor: read about him on the Zipeg website, or look at the Zipeg icon, or listen the lighthearted jingle that plays when you use Zipeg to extract a file. Zipeg works great, and it's fun!
For more information, and to download a Windows- or Mac-compatible copy of the latest version of Zipeg, visit the website: http://www.Zipeg.com
Zipeg is freeware, but you are welcome to make a donation to help to continue development.