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What is a RAR file?

How to open and convert RAR files.

What to Know

  • Roshal Archive Compressed files are called RAR files.
  • You can open it with 7Zip ezyZip , Unzip-Online.com or any other file extractor software.
  • Convert to ZIP, 7Z and other archive formats. With IZArc and Zamzar.

This article will explain what a RAR file looks like, why it’s used, how to open it, and the best ways to convert one into another archive format.

What is a RAR file?

A RAR file is short for a Roshal Archive Compressed File. It is a compressed data container that contains one or more files or folders.

A RAR file can be thought of as a regular folder on your computer. It may contain many files or folders that are needed to organize them.

is not like a regular folder. A RAR file requires special software (more details below) to open and extract the contents.

Most file extensions can be pronounced using their individual letters. However, RAR is often pronounced like a word and is pronounced “rahr.”

Lifewire / Tim Liedtke

What are RAR files used for?

When you download computer software, the RAR file is what you will encounter. Software distributors and file sharing sites sometimes use RAR files to compress their files to make it easier to download. For easier transmission, some RAR files can be broken up into smaller parts.

You can save download time by encrypting RAR files with a password to protect their contents. This is like a small locked box containing data. The password is the key.

Most RAR files don’t come with a password protection. They are used to store images and documents or any other type of file that the author requested.

A RAR file can also be helpful if a friend has many files they wish to share with you. Instead of downloading each image individually, your friend could first compile them into a RAR and then share that file with you.

After opening a RAR file you can extract data from its inside and use it as any other file on your computer.

How to open a RAR file

Windows computers do not have the ability to open RAR file files. Double-clicking or double-tapping a RAR file will result in one of two messages: “Windows cannot read this file” or, “How can you open this file (.rar). “.

Actually, RAR is the regular format for an archive program called WinRAR. WinRAR is not free. Be aware that WinRAR is not free! There are many other RAR openers available that can do the exact opposite, but they’re completely free.

7Zip may be the most powerful unRAR tool out there.

Set 7-Zip up to automatically associate with RAR files. This will allow you to open RAR files from any computer, and 7-Zip will open them automatically.

Open 7-Zip File Manager using the Start menu. Next, go to Tools> Option. Choose rar from the list of file formats and then click the + option for the current user, all users or both. The rar file type will be next to the little disk icon. You can save your changes by clicking the OK icon.

If 7-Zip doesn’t open RAR file after you double-click them and it still won’t, please see How do I change the default program for a specific file extension?. If you go this route, you’ll need to know the install location of 7-Zip File Manager, which on most computers will be “C:\Program Files (x86)\7-Zip\7zFM.exe”.

By right-clicking on RAR files and selecting 7Zip> from the pop-up context menu, you can also open them with 7Zip. Multipart RAR files can be referred to as HTML123.part1.rar or HTML123.part2.rar . First, select all parts of the RAR file. Next, right-click on one of them. Then choose 7Zip> extract files.

7-Zip can also open RAR files. PeaZip, jZip can also open RAR files.

Mac users should have the ability to download Keka and The unarchiver, which can be used to delete RAR files.

There are more ways to open RAR files on a Mac

You can also use Unzip Online. This allows you to open RAR files directly from your web browser. For more information, see our review on Unzip-Online.

ezyZip is another online RAR opening tool that is particularly useful because you don’t have to wait for the file to be uploaded to the website or wait to download it once it’s done. The entire process is performed locally within your browser. Images can be viewed right from the page. It will open and save to your computer or Dropbox account.

This list contains more download links for free RAR extractors.

WinZip Free is sometimes referred to as a free RAR opening tool, but it’s actually just trialware. It’s not necessary to purchase RAR extractors or trial software when there are many completely free options.

Cracking a Password Protected RAR File

Passwords can be used to protect some RAR files. Before you can extract the RAR files from the archive, you will need to know the password.

Password protection for a RAR file can be problematic if you have created your own archive and secured it using a password but then forgot what password was! A RAR password cracker is a great tool.

RAR password cracker expert is a free program that can crack the password of RAR files. To recover the password, it can be used brute force or a dictionary attack (with associated wordlists). You can customize the attack you use by choosing from many options.

If the above program fails to unlock your RAR file you can give FreeRAR Password Recovery another try. It uses brute force to guess the password. It supports numbers, symbols and capital letters as well as Latin characters.

How to Convert an RAR File

A RAR file can be converted to another extension by changing it from one with the RAR extension. This is usually 7Z, ZIP or LGH.

Before we go into RAR converting we need to clarify one thing: You can’t convert a RAR file from a non-zipped format. You’ll find many search suggestions for RAR files, such as “RAR converter “…MP3” and “RAR converter none of which are actually available!”

A RAR file, as you know, is identical to a folder containing other documents. Open the RAR file if it contains an MP3 file. To get the MP3s, however, you will need to not convert it. To learn how to unpack MP3s (or PDFs) in a RAR file, see the section above.

If you are interested in converting RAR files to ZIP or 7Z files (or other archive formats), keep reading. There are several ways to accomplish this.

A free file converter supports RAR conversions like Zamzar and FileZigZag. This is the fastest and most efficient way to convert a RAR into ZIP or any other common archive format. These RAR converters can be used online. Simply upload the file to the website, and you will get the converted file.

If the RAR file that you are working with is small, an online RAR converter might be a good choice. However, you won’t want to use it for large files. Wait for the RAR file upload to complete, then wait for it to convert. This can take a while if the file is very large.

IZArc is a good choice if you are trying to convert a large RAR file. It is very easy to convert RAR files to 7Z or to other formats using IZArc’s tools menu.

How to make a RAR file

It is not as simple as finding a tool that creates a RAR archive. Alexander Roshal, the copyright owner, must give software developers permission to recreate the RAR compression algorithm.

We recommend the free trial version of WinRAR, to create a RAR file. Although it is a trial period, technically it is valid for 30 days, it is the best way to create a new RAR file.

We recommend you use and not to save files in RAR format. This is because there are many other compression formats like ZIP or 7Z that are more widely accessible.

More information on RAR Files

Although you won’t find one that large, RAR files can only be 8 exbibytes in size. This is more than 9 million Terabytes.

Chrome OS is an operating system that supports RAR file extractions. This is similar to Windows’ natural support for unpacking ZIP archives. Chrome OS can extract files from a RAR file with no third-party software.


  • What do I do if I get a RAR file but it’s supposed to contain a.exe?
    There are several things you can do if you have trouble extracting executable files (.exe) from RAR files. If WinRAR is giving you an error message while extracting the.exe file, then try another tool such as WinZip. You can also try to repair the file. Right-click the file that is giving you an error message and open it with WinRAR. Or your extraction tool. Select Repair Archive. Sometimes, antivirus software can cause errors when extracting files. You can try disabling antivirus software to see if that solves your problem. Also, you can try uninstalling or updating your extraction tool and then reinstalling it. Then check if the.exe file extracts.
  • Are RAR files dangerous?
    RAR files do not pose a danger. They are similar to ZIP files in that they can hold other files. Be aware, however, that files in a RAR file could be harmful; malware can be spread via RAR files (and other archive file formats). You can open the RAR file to examine its contents. Make sure the file isn’t malware before extracting it. Also, have your antivirus software handy to verify it. You can check the file extensions in the RAR to see if they are what you expected. If a file is supposed to be a video, but ends in.exe it could indicate that the file may be potentially dangerous.
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