PowerArchiver 9.6

With this utility you can compress/decompress archives of several formats
3.8  (89 votes)
15.04.3 (See all)

This award winning software is a shareware alternative to classic compression utilities. It provides support for virtually all popular compression formats. It’s powerful, easy to use, versatile and has a nice interface. You can compress and decompress most archives using the same program, so you don't have to download and install many different utilities just to decompress a single archive.

With PowerArchiver you can compress and decompress ZIP, 7-ZIP, CAB, LHA (LZH), TAR, GZIP, BZIP2, BH, XXE, UUE and yENC archives. You can open and extract RAR, ARJ, ARC, ACE, ZOO archives. Besides, you can browse your CD/DVD images as if they were regular compressed archives without installing any additional software thanks to newly added support for ISO, BIN, IMG and NRG disc image formats. This is useful when you download a CD/DVD image from the Internet and you want to see its content before burning. This program is fully compatible with Windows, so you can compress, extract and use other functions directly from Windows Explorer.

What some users may miss is that this utility can’t compress in RAR format, but it shouldn’t be a problem because in addition to ZIP, GZIP and other popular formats, now you can compress your files using 7zip format with a high compression ratio. 7zip is an open source format with an open architecture, so it is expected that in the near future PowerArchiver will take advantage of this to contribute and improve this mighty compression format.

PowerArchiver also works great with ZIP archives. It supports unlimited file size and unlimited number of files in ZIP archives, support for advanced Deflate64 method providing higher compression ratios, IP AES support (both PkZip 5.1 and WZ 9.0 standards supported). Talking about security, PowerArchiver fully supports ZIP AES encryption, 128-bit/192-bit/256-bit, PKZip 5.1 (full), Secure Zip 8.0 and WinZip 9.0 AE-1 and AE-2. And it can encrypt files using Blowfish (128-bit), DES (64-bit), Triple DES (128-bit), AES 128-bit and AES 256-bit.

Another useful feature of this program is Automated Backup. With a step by step wizard you can back up your information using 5 compression formats with password protection. One important thing to consider when backing up your data is to store the backup in different places, not on the same hard drive. PowerArchiver helps with this because it can upload your data to an FTP or SFTP server.

PowerArchiver has many useful tools to manage your archives. One of this tools is the Convert Tool, with it you can convert files among formats and has the option to convert multiple archives at the same time. There’s also the Repair Tool to repair broken ZIP archives; it would be better though if it could repair archives of all formats.

With Write/Merge Multivolume Tools you can split ZIP files into multivolumes, and also merge multivolumes into a single ZIP, useful when you want to back up a really big file or folder, or when you download many small archives and want to merge all of them into a single one.

The Multi-Extract Tool is a time saver, with it you can extract multiple archives at the same time. For example, when you download lyrics of your favorite artist, you realize you have hundreds of small ZIP files. Instead of extracting one by one, you can extract all of them at the same time. The Batch ZIP Tool does the opposite. Imagine that you are running a lyrics website and want to compress all your lyrics library in separate archives to save bandwidth. Using this tool you can compress all of them into separate compressed files.

The program's interface is intuitive and easy to use. Versions are available in Croatian, Czech, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Slovak, Spanish, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese and Ukrainian.

PowerArchiver is great software if you really need all its functionality and can pay for it. If you only want to compress some files for personal purposes you should try a free utility like 7zip, which may be not that complete but it’s free. If you are more serious about compressing files or want to back up your valuable daily work, PowerArchiver will be the best choice.

This version adds support for Windows Vista. New DirectSkin skin engine for WindowBlinds skin compatibility, improved 7-Zip engine with faster and better compression. Support for opening 7-Zip archives with Unicode filename and support for default shell extension profiles have been added as well. The application has improved shell extensions for Windows XP x64 Edition and other improvements and fixes.

Jose David Garcia
Editor rating:

Review summary


  • It’s a great software, all in one
  • You can compress, decompress many different formats and even browse CD/DVD images
  • You can back up your data and upload it to an FTP Server
  • Available in many languages
  • Nice interface
  • Easy to use


  • It’s not free
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