Free zip program - zip and unzip utility for windows by Ken Ward. This free program can be downloaded and freely used and distributed. This page contains information on how to use Zipper. See the links below (bottom row) for further help

[Web Tools] [Freeing the Mind][Computer Stuff]
[Main Zipper Page][Zipper Online Help][Zipper Help]

How to use Ken Ward's Zipper

This program is a free zip and unzip utility

The program opens in unzip mode. If you have zipped or unzipped a program previously, it will be loaded here and the contents will be shown. The directory box (on the left of the program will be set to this directory.

Remember to back up important data. For example copy the zip file so you have a backup if necessary. When working with zip files on floppy disks, copy the file to your hard drive and work on it there. Then copy it back to your floppy disk. Zipper can try to rescue damaged zips, but rely on your backups.

Below this directory is a list of files the sole purpose of which is to allow you to see what is in your selected directory.

On this page:

  1. Opening files with Ken Ward's Zipper
  2. Unzipping files
  3. Previewing Files
  4. Popup Menus
  5. Zipping Files
  6. Add All Files
  7. Add Selected Files
  8. Zip Repair
  9. Create an EXE file (self extracting zip file)
  10. Uninstalling Zipper

Opening files with Ken Ward's Zipper

You can drag a zip file onto zipper when zipper is open.

Or you can use the context popup menu. Press Shift and right-click the file. Choose 'Open with ...' and find zipper with the button named 'Other'.

If you wish to make zipper your default zip/unzip utility then check the checkbox in the 'Open with ..' dialogue named 'Always use this program to open this type of file.' After this, when you double-click on a zip file, it will open in Zipper.

When you first start the program for the very first time, (unless you use one of the other methods stated above) the directory will be the default directory, and the box on the left, named 'Files in current zip file', will be empty (because you haven't loaded a zip file!).

(NB: After you have opened a file to zip or zipped some files, then zipper will reload the last zip file)

The open page will have the caption, 'Ken Ward's Zipper - Unzip a File'.

Various buttons and menus will not be enabled for the logical reason that they have nothing to do. This helps to guide you to the first actions to take. The buttons aren't enabled because, even if they were enabled, they would have nothing to do.

One button that always will be enabled is the one that opens an existing zip file. You can click on this button (at first this will be the only button you can click on) or choose from the main menu - File: Open a File to Unzip.

Why not open a file somewhere and load it into Zipper - it won't unzip or anything yet - it will only load and Zipper will read it.

If the zip file has any files, they will appear in the big box on the right called 'Files in Current Zip File'. Also the size of the zip file and its uncompressed size will be shown in the boxes in the same panel. The sizes are in bits. These boxes will give you an idea of the size of the files when they are unzipped. In fact, the size will be somewhat larger than shown, because all files require additional space.

Probably the most useful feature here are the directories to which the files will be unzipped. These will be new directories (if there are any) created below the current directory. You can see from looking at the list whether you can safely unzip into the current directory (because the program will create sub-directories) or whether you need to create a new directory to keep the unzipped files together.

Unzipping files

Double-click on the directory box to go to the directory where you want to unzip your files. When you have done so, Zipper will unzip the files in the zip file into that directory when you select Actions: 'Unzip All Files in Zip File'. The box at the top of the Directories column shows the destination directory where your zipped files will be extracted.

If you have not selected any files in the list of files, then this menu item will be the only action you can perform.

Select one or more files in the 'Files in Current Zip File' box and a new menu item will be enabled in the Actions Menu (and the corresponding button will also activate). You can now choose Actions: 'Unzip Selected Files', because now there are some selected files to unzip.

Also the Action Menu item 'Delete Selected Files' will be active, because there are now some selected files, so you have the option of deleting them. Normally you will only do this with a zip file that you have created yourself because once this file is deleted (or files) then they are gone forever!

So now, you have more options because you have loaded a zip file and have selected some files. You can choose whether to unzip all of the files or just selected files into the directory you have chosen in the directory box.

You unzip all the files in the current directory, or just the selected ones by clicking on the appropriate buttons, Menu Items, or Popupmenu Items. This is the final action after you have opened a zip file and chosen your destination directory. If you do not choose a distinction directory, the files will be unzipped into whichever directory is current.

Previewing Files

You can preview files in a zip by double clicking on the file. Your default viewer (or handler) will activate the file so you can preview it before installation.

Popup Menus

You can often use popup menus to do the tasks done by the Main Menu or by the Buttons. Right clicking - to open popup menus on the files or directory boxes will give you the option of updating the file list or opening the file operations dialogue to delete files or to create new directories for your unzipped files.

Actually, you can often delete files or remove items from the list by pressing the Delete Button (on your keyboard).

Zipping Files

You may already noticed the tabs on the top left of the program named Zip and Unzip. The Unzip tab will be pressed when you are in Unzip Mode. You can click the Zip tab to go to the Make a Zip File screen.

The name of the currently loaded zip file will remain the same when you change tabs. So if you are in the zip screen and you click the Unzip tab, the same file name will be shown in the unzip screen and this file will be opened. So after zipping files, you just click on the Unzip tab and the file is read, giving you a list of files in the zip file.

Back to zipping files ...

The zip file screen is divided into three main columns:

  • The Directories
  • The Files, and
  • The List of Files to Zip

Add All Files ...

At first, at most one button will be enabled. If there are any files in the current directory, then the 'Add All Files' button and corresponding menu items will be enabled. Also the popup menu for the Files box (middle column) will have this item enabled. You can therefore add all the files in the current directory to the list of files to zip. You can, of course, move to other directories and add the files to the list of files to zip. At this stage, you are just making a list and are not zipping anything yet.

You can also drag and drop the files.

Add Selected Files

Of course, if no files are selected, then you cannot add selected files! But as soon as one or more files are selected in the current directory, then the Menu Item to add selected files (Edit: Add Selected Files) becomes enabled, as do the corresponding buttons and popup menu items.

You therefore have the choice of adding the selected files to the list of files to zip or all of the files in the current directory.

When you have one or more files to zip, then you can:

  • Add all the files to the currently loaded zip
  • Add all the files to an existing zip
  • Zip all the files to a new zip file.

If you wish to remove one or more files from the list of files, then you can use the popup menu or press the delete key to delete the selected files from the list. This doesn't delete any files - only remove them from the list. However, deleting files in the Files Box will move them to the recycle bin.

So to zip files, you need to have at least one file in the list of files to zip and then choose whether you want to add the files to a new zip, the current zip or an existing zip, and then press the appropriate buttons or use the menu items, or the popup menu.

The zip utility will make a message box that will say that so-many files were zipped out of so-many selected for zipping. Sometimes, all the files will not be zipped. This occurs when the files already exist in the zip file. If you wish to change a file in the zip file, then delete the file first. You can do this by going to the Unzip screen and selecting the unwanted files or file, and pressing the delete key, or using one of the other methods (popup menu, Main Menu, etc). You can then go to the Zip screen and add the replacement files.

Zip Repair

In the Unzip screen, you can use Zip Repair for zip files that may be incomplete or damaged. Normally, if the zip file is a program, then you will want to download another copy, but sometimes you might want to try and rescue some files from a zip archive.

When you click on the appropriate button (the ambulance) or the Menu Item - File: Fix Zip File - the Fix Zip program will try to get as many files from the zip as it can, and save them to a new zip file.

You must first open the incomplete zip in the Unzip screen (it will probably show no files), and enter a new name, when prompted for a zip file that includes the files that have been rescued. Ensure you also enter the '.zip' for the file. This new file will then open in the unZip screen displaying any files it has rescued.

Create an EXE file (self extracting zip file)

As Zipper is free, there is little point in having an EXE file, but you can create an exe file in a similar manner to creating a zip file. The only difference is that you will choose the Action Item: Make an EXE File, after you have added files to the list. You can also click on the appropriate button (the watch).

How to Uninstall

To remove the Ken Ward's Zipper program that is installed on your computer, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Add or Remove Programs.
  2. In the Currently Installed Programs box, click Ken Ward's Zipper and then click Remove.