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Graphic + Internet related tutorials . . . Using Winzip ©

To be able to download programs, files, etc. that are zipped files from various places on the Internet, you'll need to use a program like Winzip©. You need to un-zip those files to get at them. You will also be able to zip up your own files to send to someone else, or put up on your website for other people to download. There are several brands of zip/unzip programs, this tutorial uses screen shots using Winzip version 7 (the current version works the same way!).

This tutorial is written for the person who has never done this before, so the language may seem too 'simplistic', but I hope to be able to help the 'newbie' (we ALL were, once! *grin*).

Why are are files zipped up?
  • Because files often get corrupted when they are transferred "loose" over internet lines. Zipped files are within a "container" that protects those files during transmission / downloading.
  • The file sizes can be compressed (made smaller) providing shorter downloading / transferring time.

You can also use a zipping-up program to zip your own files and send as attachments to email, or upload to a website and offer them (via a link) for others to download and save to their computer.

To offer a zipped item as a download on a web page, first, upload your zipped file to your webhost, and place a link on your page that looks like this.

<a href="10-2004nsltr.zip">Download October 2004's Newsletter</a>

This example is to download a zipped, October newsletter (or e-zine), zip file name of "10-2004nsltr.zip".

I'm going to demonstrate using Winzip, first to zip up a file, then to unzip (open) a zipped file that you have downloaded or received attached to an email, etc. Winzip is free to download, a shareware program. If you like the program and plan to continue using it, you are expected to send in the shareware price, not expensive at all for all it's benefits! You can download Winzip from ZD Net.

Follow it's instructions for installing, I did it by myself, and had NO problems. Truthfully! And I was not very experienced at the time. If you are unfamilar with installing programs, you can use the "standard installation" which will place a shortcut on your desktop. When you do the setup, you should choose to use the "Classic Interface" instead of "Wizard Interface". The "Wizard Interface" will not give you an option to zip up a file, only options there are unzipping files.


Zipping Up a File

To Zip up a file, step 1:

Open / start the program.
Did you let it put a shortcut on your desktop? If not, go through the start button and find the program.

This is the first screen you will see.

To create a new zipped file, choose the "New" button.

First screen you will see when you open the Winzip program

Get to the folder you want to place your new zipped file in - step 2 Get to a folder for your new zipped file, step 2

That will open another window. First, you'll have to manuver thru your computer's file to get to the folder where you want to place your new zipped file.

Use the arrow keys to get to the directory you have decided on, then the folder within that directory.

It might be easiest to place your new zipped file in the same folder as the file you want to zip up. You can move or copy it somewhere else, later.

Choose a name for your file - step 3 Choose a name for your new zipped file, step 3

This example will place the newly zipped file in my "Tutorials" folder. Once that folder is open, choose a name for your file.

Choose the new name for your new zipped file, click "ok" and that will bring you to the next screen.

If you're going to share your files with others, there are a few hints (below image) to make it less frustrating for people who would be receiving your zipped files.

  • No spaces in the name (some systems have a problem with spaces in names of zipped files - or ANY file)
  • Can be upper and lower case, helps to give it an accurate name describing the contents inside.
  • When naming, you don't have to add the ".zip" to the end of the file name. I do, only because I don't like Winzip's default ".ZIP" of all caps. Either upper or lower case is really fine, though.

Select the file you want to zip up - step 4 Get to the file you want to zip, step 4

You will get another window where you will use the arrow keys to find the actual file that you want to zip up.

Make sure the "Action" chosen is "Add",

Compression recommended is "Maximum". Yes, it says it is the slowest method, but it truly takes only seconds longer, and you will end up with the smallest file size possible. If you're going to send your files attached to email, this is *very* important.
(see note below image)

Click on the filename (to highlight) and then choose "Add".

Most email programs and email servers have a limit on the size of a file you can send via email. Mine has a 500kb limit, it will not send attached files over approx 450kb
(have to add in the size of the email file, too, when talking about total size of the sent email).
You'd have to check with your email provider, or experiment, to find out the limit on yours.

View the file(s) you just placed in the zipped up container - step 5 View the file that's in the zipped "container", step 5

It will zip up your file, then show you this screen.

If you want to add more files to that zipped container - step 6 If you want to place a second file in that zipped file, then continue on.

Choose "Add", and repeat step 4, getting to the other file you want to add, then add it to this zipped "container".


Method A:To open/unzip a file you've downloaded, or received via the Internet - step one - find the file in your computer's system

To unzip/open a zipped file that you have downloaded or received, there are two ways to do that.

Method #1)

You can open the Winzip program, use the arrow keys to find the folder that has the zipped file.

(details about using the arrow keys to move around your computer's files is in the 'downloading from the Internet' tutorial)

Click on the file name (to highlight) and choose "Open".

Method A: To open/unzip a zipped file - step 2 - choose extract Winzip will show you a screen that shows what's actually inside the zipped container.

There may be several files inside one zipped file.

Then, click on the "Extract" button.

The next screen will let you search through your computer to choose the folder that you want to place the unzipped file in.

The default is to put the files in your 'C:Windows\Temp' folder, that's okay, you will have to go look for them there, that's all.

When you have clicked on the folder that you want your unzipped files to be placed in, then click the "Extract" button. That's it, your unzipped files will be in the folder you have chosen.

Method A: To open/unzip a zipped file - step three - extract to folder of choice


Method #2)

Another method for unzipping files, is to go into Windows© Explorer, find the folder where you have placed the zipped file.
This example, the "NameOfYourFile.zip" had been placed in the "0 Downloads" folder. Click on the file (to highlight) and then double click. That will open the Winzip program.

Method B: To open/unzip a zipped file - step one - find the file in your computer, double click on it to start/open the Winzip program

If you want to place the unzipped file in the same folder, even temporarily, you can click on the file(s) in the Winzip window, and just drag them over into a "blank" area of that same "0 Downloads" folder. That unzips them in the process. And is a very easy and fast way to unzip file(s). You can move the unzipped file(s) to whatever folder you want to, later.

Method B: To open/unzip a zipped file - step two - drag the file to an open area of that folder, it will place the unzipped file in that folder

That's it! I hope this information is helpful to someone.

Tutorial © 1999 Roxy Flanagan
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