The archives come in many shapes and sizes, and you might not even realize that some files are compressed: software installation packages, picture formats, audio files, and many videos, for example. Of course, the basic idea behind file compression is to decrease the space needed to store data, and, perhaps more important, cut down on the time it takes to transfer that information. That's the reason most folks compress their files. Perhaps you're using an email server with attachment limits, or maybe you're archiving your important user data for backup. In those cases, the time it takes to complete a compression job is ultimately less important than the compression rate you're able to achieve. There are many tools for Windows that promise all of the compression and archiving functionality that anyone could ever need. The vast majority of them can handle ZIP, the most commonly-used compression format, along with a number of other popular formats, such as 7z, RAR, TAR, and GZIP. Today, we benchmark three of the most well-known archiving and compression tools: 7-Zip, WinRAR, and WinZip.
Original article here: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/winrar-winzip-7-zip-magicrar,3436.html
Unix tip: 7-Zip to the rescue | ITworld
It's called 7-Zip." 7-Zip is open source, GNU LGPL-licensed software that supports a extremely wide range of file formats. You can pack and unpack 7z, zip, gzip, bzip2 and tar files. You can unpack (i.e., unpack only) arj, cab, chm, cpio, deb, dmg, hfs, iso, lzh, lzma, msi, nsis, rar, rpm, udf, wim, xar and z files. What I needed was, of course, to download the iso.zip files from Sun's web site, unzip each of them (using 7-zip or WinZIP) and then find and extract the particular package that I needed using 7-zip. No CD burning needed. I found out that I could unzip and extract from the iso file with one running of 7-Zip. Here's how it worked: With 7-Zip installed on my laptop, I right clicked on the first of the Solaris iso.zip files. I then: selected 7-Zip -> Open Archive to open the iso.tar file double-clicked on the iso file opened the Solaris_10 folder opened the Product folder and looked through the package folders (e.g., SUNWfbc, SUNWfchba and so on) until I found the one I needed. Now that's a handy tool!
Original article here: http://www.itworld.com/personal-tech/59945/7-zip-rescue