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How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

As Chromebooks become mainstream computing devices, they need to be compatible with popular file formats and compression software. Files received over email or downloaded from the internet can often come in the .zip or .rar format. This means that the required files have been ‘zipped’ and need to be ‘extracted’. Luckily, there are a few ways to ZIP and unzip files on Chrome OS.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookZip And Unzip Files

Method 1: Use the Files App

Unzipping

The Chrome OS Files app, while fairly minimalistic, does decompress zipped files. If you double click on a zipped file, you will notice that the file shows up on the left sidebar of the Files app.

This sidebar is usually the place where connected USB drives or SD cards would show up. So why is your ZIP file showing up there? Well, because Chrome OS handles ZIP files like external storage. They mount these files in such a manner that the zipped content then becomes accessible through the mounted ZIP file.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

In order to extract your required files from this mounted zip, all you need to do is copy the contents of this mounted drive and paste them outside, in the downloads folder.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

These files will then be available to access outside of the zip, and you can ‘eject’ the ZIP file by pressing the arrow button on the right side of the file in the sidebar.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Note: Trying to open a ZIP file from Google Drive will show an error message. This method only works if the ZIP file is in the Downloads folder on your Chromebook.

Zipping

We can sometimes need to send a folder of documents, or some images bundled together in a single file. Zipping is the most common method of sharing folders with other people. It also functions as a file compressor on most operating systems. On the Chromebook, however, the zipping function only zips files together without compressing them at all. The zipped file, then, will be as large as the sum of all the files it contains.

It is important to note that all files that you want to ZIP together must be stored on the Downloads folder on Chrome OS. Trying to ZIP files directly from Google Drive does not work on the Files app. (See Method 2 for zipping/unzipping files stored on Google Drive.)

Now that you have all the files you want to ZIP in the Downloads folder, create a new folder (by pressing Ctrl + E while in the Files app) and put these files inside that folder. So, all the content that you want to ZIP must be inside that one folder only. After you have created such a folder, right-click on the folder. This dropdown menu will appear.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Click on ‘Zip Selection’ and the ZIP with all your selected files will be created in the Downloads folder itself. It will look like this –

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

This ZIP file is now ready to be shared with people. This is how you can ZIP files using the Files app on Chrome OS.

Method 2: Use Zip Extractor

Zip Extractor is an online tool that can unzip files stored in Google Drive or from your Downloads folder. You will have to authorize the tool to access your Google Drive by clicking the blue ‘Authorize’ button. For some reason, you have to authorize access to Google Drive even if you want to unzip a file from your local Downloads folder.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

You will then be able to select the ZIP file that you want to unzip from Google Drive or from your local storage.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Once you select a ZIP file to unzip, ZIP Extractor quickly unzips the file and makes the contents of the file available for download. You can also directly save the unzipped content to your Google Drive. This makes it pretty convenient to work with ZIP files inside Google Drive.

I would only recommend Method 2 if there’s a large ZIP file on Google Drive that you need to unzip. For local files, it would be much more secure to use Method 1, Chrome OS’s default way of handling ZIPs.

Brady Gavin has been immersed in technology for 15 years and has written over 150 detailed tutorials and explainers. He’s covered everything from Windows 10 registry hacks to Chrome browser tips. Brady has a diploma in Computer Science from Camosun College in Victoria, BC. Read more.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Want to send off a bunch of files in an email, or maybe you received a compressed ZIP file as an attachment on your Chromebook? Whether you want to zip or unzip files, Chrome OS makes it a breeze to do without any additional applications.

How to Zip Files

To get started, open the Files app and navigate your way to the folder with the files you want to zip up.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Once here, highlight all the files you want to add by holding down Ctrl while clicking each file to be added. Then right-click on the selected files and click “Zip Selected” from the context menu that appears.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

The files are zipped and added to a file named “Archive.zip” in the current directory. The name is “Archive” by default but can be changed to whatever you’d like after it’s created.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Now that you’ve zipped your files, they’re ready to be uploaded and sent off to friends and family as an attachment in an email.

How to Unzip Files

If you were sent a ZIP file as an attachment from a friend or family member, unzipping it on your Chromebook is just as easy as it is to zip. It even does RAR files natively, as well!

When it comes to unzipping a file, Chrome OS does things a bit differently than you may be used to if you’re coming from PC or Mac. Instead of opening the file to see the contents, Chrome OS mounts the file as if it were an external drive inside the Files app.

If you received the file via email, download it and navigate to it in the Files app. Downloads are usually found in the “Downloads” folder.

Double-click on the ZIP file to open it and the contents of the file are displayed.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Notice that when you open the file, it gets mounted as an external drive on the left side of the window.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Now that you’ve opened the file let’s move the contents to a folder on your Chromebook by selecting the files you want using the Ctrl key and clicking each item, then right-click a file, and click “Copy.”

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Next, navigate to the destination folder where you want to store these files, right-click, and from the context menu, select “Paste.”

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

That’s all there is to it. After you’re done extracting the files, click the eject icon to unmount the ZIP file from the Files app, and now you can safely delete it from your Chromebook.

TrueCrypt on Chromebook : TrueCrypt is a freeware utility used for encrypting a partition or creating a virtual encrypted disk. Developed by TrueCrypt Foundation, this software is written in C, C++ and works fine in all devices.

The latest version of this encryption software comes with lots of features that help to encrypt disks with ease.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Features of TrueCrypt

  • Supports individual ciphers such as AES, Twofish and Serpent
  • Cryptographic hash functions and five cascaded algorithms are available
  • Uses XTS mode of operation
  • Header and secondary header key will be generated based on the type of hash function used
  • Allows users to create a single hidden volume within another volume
  • Helps to create and run a hidden encrypted OS
  • Offers high performance especially for operations which use Direct Memory Access
  • Supports pipelined read/write operations, hardware accelerated AES and parallelized encryption

More software for Chromebook: Download TeamViewer for Chromebook

Installing TrueCrypt using Play Store

  1. Check if your Chromebook is compatible for installing Android apps: Chromebook Play Store Compatibility
  2. If your Chromebook is compatible, then you can install Play store by following these instructions. After that search for “TrueCrypt” and install the app on your chromebook.
  3. If your Chromebook is not compatible you can download the Play store apk and installing it manually, After that you can follow the steps mentioned above to find the “TrueCrypt” app and install it on your device.

Installing TrueCrypt using Chrome Browser

  1. If the software is not available on Play store, then you can try finding “TrueCrypt” on the chrome web store.
  2. Open chrome browser and go to the Web store, search for “TrueCrypt” and install it.

Install TrueCrypt using Rollapp

  1. If the “TrueCrypt” software is not available on chrome web store, then you can go to Rollapp, a useful website to access software online from any device.
  2. Go to the Rollapp website and search for “TrueCrypt” and use the application online.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

If you just bought a Chromebook and are wondering how to unzip the compressed files your friend sent to you or zip up a bunch of files so you can send to your friend, you will be happy to know that Chrome OS comes with built-in support for zip files.

A lot of users may think the Chromebook can’t handle such a simple file type, owing to the unconventional way the device deals with zip files, but it actually can manage zip files.

This tutorial will show you how to manage your zip files in Chromebook.

How to Zip and Unzip Files on Chromebook

The Files app is the place to go to manage all your files in Chromebook, and this will also be the only app you need to manage your zip files.

1. Download the zipped files to the Downloads folder.

2. Open the Files app, and go to the Downloads folder.

3. Double-click on the zipped file. This will open the zipped file. You should also see it mounted on the left sidebar.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

4. From here, you can copy the file(s) you want to extract and paste them to the folder you want.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

5. To unmount the zipped file, click the Eject icon on the left sidebar.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

To create a zip file:

1. Open the Files app, and select all the files you want to compress.

2. Right-click and select “Zip Selection.”

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

3. A file named “Archive.zip” will be created. You can rename it by right-clicking and selecting “Rename.”

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

We’d love to hear how you zip or unzip your files in your Chromebook. Is there a preferred tool or app you use that we didn’t cover or a different process that works for you? Let us know in a comment below.

Damien Oh started writing tech articles since 2007 and has over 10 years of experience in the tech industry. He is proficient in Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and iOS, and worked as a part time WordPress Developer. He is currently the owner and Editor-in-Chief of Make Tech Easier.

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Unlike Windows and Mac, Chromebooks don’t open the zip files normally, it considers zip file as separate storage and mounts it like an external hard disc. Though the implementation is a bit sketchy, you can easily fix it. Here is a step-by-step process of how you can zip and unzip files on the Chromebook.

How to Zip Files on Chromebook

To Zip files, select the files you want to place in the zip. You can do that by pressing the ‘Ctrl’ key on your keyboard and tap on the file to select. You can even select multiple files in a similar way.

Now right-click/two-finger tap on your trackpad and select the option “Zip Selection” in the pop-up menu.

It will create a Zip File in the same file location at the bottom. It will not completely move the files into the zip, they will just get copied to the zip file.

By default, the name of the file will be set to “Archive.zip”. But you can double-tap on the file and select the option “Rename” to rename the zip name. That’s how you can create zip files on your Chromebook and you can send it to anyone online.

How to Unzip Files on Chromebook

To Unzip the file, double click on the zip file to open it as separate mounted storage. Chrome OS shows mounted devices in a left sidebar.

Not just showing it as separate storage, even the complete process of extracting is similar to how we deal with a hard disc. To extract the files, select the files you want to extract. If you want to extract all the files, then press ctrl + A to select every file.

Now right-click/two-finger tap and select the option “Copy” in the pop-up menu.

Now navigate to the destination where you want the files to extract and right-click/ two-finger tap and select the option “Paste” in the pop-up menu to paste the files over there.

Now you can unmount the zip file by tapping on the unmount icon beside the zip file.

Better Use a Third-Party App

By default, Chrome OS can only open zip files in .zip and .rar formats. To unzip any other zip file format, you need to install this chrome extension. The best part about this extension is, unlike other extensions, it merges with the native files app on chrome OS as it is specially made for the Chromebooks.

To install, open chrome and open Chrome web store. Now search for Wicked Good Unarchiver and add it to Chrome. Alternatively, you can open this link to directly get to the extension page.

Once done, that’s it. Now your files app can even open 7z, ar, CAB, CPIO, deb, iso, jar, lha, pax, rpm, tar, warc files.

Alternatively

By using the extension, you can only open, but cannot create files. Instead of using some third-party app, just create the zip file in. zip format in the Files app and use the Online Converter Free website to convert it to any file format you want.

To do that, just open the website choose the file you want to convert, and select the file type to which you want to convert and hit convert. Online converter Free will automatically convert the file and you can download it.

Wrapping up

There are even many third-party apps like Zip exactor, Archive Extractor, Zip Share which are web apps, or you can even use Android apps like File manager Plus. But upon usage, using Wicked Good Unarchiver felt better because of its complete integration into the Chrome OS files app.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookSource: Android Central

Even though your Google Drive storage can seem practically limitless, there are times when you need to download large files or files in bulk to your Chromebook, which has limited on-device storage. Additionally, you may need to upload or share large files with friends and family who don’t have the storage or bandwidth to handle such large transfers. Thankfully, Google has built Chromebooks to support zipping and unzipping large files on-device on Chromebooks. I’ll show you how to use this feature in the steps below.

How to unzip files on a Chromebook

Whether you are sent a large, zipped file, or you download it yourself from the web, you will find it by opening the Files app on your Chromebook. (I have mine pinned to the shelf, but yours may be in the app launcher).

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookSource: Android Central

Double-click on the file with the .zip extension.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookSource: Android Central

The zipped file should show up on the left navigation bar. In the main Files window the zipped file should open up to reveal the contents. Click on any file to modify, manipulate, or move it.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookSource: Android Central

Now that you know how to open a zipped file, let’s take a look at how to create one from your Chromebook.

How to zip files on a Chromebook

  1. From the Files app, select the files you wish to zip.
  2. Right-click or use two fingers to pull up the contextual menu.

Click on Zip selection.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookSource: Android Central

Your files will be compressed into a .zip package (show here as Archive.zip) that you can then share as you see fit.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookSource: Android Central

You may be wondering why you’d want (or need) to zip files from your Chromebook for sharing, but remember that not everyone has Google Drive access (shocking, I know!). I occasionally zip files that I want to share with friends via a USB thumb drive. Additionally, if you’re working with large images or files, you may have an easier time uploading them or sharing them if compressed, then doing so individually or uncompressed. It’s a handy trick to save space in your online storage provider of choice as well!

Our top equipment picks

When choosing a new Chromebook, I advise that you look for something with at least 64GB of local storage, like this.

Flexible storage

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5

The new value Chromebook

Lenovo is on a roll with its mid-range and affordable Chromebooks, and the Flex 5 is setting the standard for what the default Chromebook should be. Plus, it comes with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of on-device storage.

  • $410 at Amazon
  • $525 at Walmart
  • $430 at B&H

Additional Equipment

While zipping and on-device storage are useful features, here are some other storage solutions that you may find helpful.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Samsung EVO 256GB microSD Card ($40 at Amazon)

If your Chromebook supports microSD cards, why not get one of the biggest and best cards available. These are ideal for smartphones, cameras, and Chromebooks alike.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Western Digital 1TB My Passport External Hard Drive (From $52 at Amazon)

This storage device offers a ton of value for the money, and should easily handle whatever you throw at it. You can also choose from 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, or 5TB models.

Google One (From $2/month at Google)

Expand your cloud storage options for full-resolution photos in Google Photos, document storage in Google Drive, phone backups, and more. You can also get extra benefits like discounts at the Google Store, and special pricing on hotel rooms.

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

These are the best USB microphones for your laptop or Chromebook

Finding a good USB microphone for a Chromebook isn’t as easy as plucking one off a shelf because of the potential compatibility issues, but there are options. We’ve done the work to find the best plug-and-play options that will ensure you can talk all you want without technical fuss.

Keep your Chromebook looking as new as possible with the best sleeves

If you don’t want to fuss with a backpack to travel with your Chromebook, then you might want to check out using a sleeve. These still offer great protection without the added bulk of lugging around a bag with you all day long.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Make sure you have plenty of storage to go with your Chromebox

Why try to get by with only 16GB of storage when adding more is as easy as plugging it in? Here are some of the best external hard drives and SSDs for Chromebox.

Jeramy Johnson

Jeramy is proud to help Keep Austin Weird and loves hiking in the hill country of central Texas with a breakfast taco in each hand. When he’s not writing about smart home gadgets and wearables, he’s defending his relationship with his smart voice assistants to his family. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeramyutgw.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Zipping files is helpful for sending and storing documents — and it’s easy to do so on your Chromebook.

And once you’ve zipped a file or received one that’s been zipped by someone else, unzipping it only takes a few clicks.

Here’s how to do both.

Check out the products mentioned in this article:

HP Chromebook (from $249 at Best Buy)

How to zip files on your Chromebook

1. Open the Files app on your Chromebook. It’s the icon that looks like a blue circle with a white folder inside of it in your bottom taskbar.

2. In Files, find the document or folder that you want to zip and right-click.

  • You can also select multiple documents by holding the Shift key on your keyboard while you click the files. A blue check mark will appear next to each selected file.

3. Right-click the selected files, and then click “Zip selection.”

4. A zip file will appear directly above your selection.

5. Click the file to view its content. You can also right-click it to rename it.

How to unzip files on your Chromebook

To unzip files, you’ll have to copy and paste the desired files to their new location on your Chromebook.

1. Click the zipped file to open it.

2. Select the file (or files using the Shift key) that you’d like to unzip.

3. Right-click and select “Copy” to copy the document or documents, or press Ctrl + C on your keyboard.

4. Right-click again, or use the Ctrl + P on your keyboard, to paste your file in its new folder. A pop-up will appear confirming that the file was successfully pasted.

5. You can also simply click and drag files to another location to extract them from the zipped file. For example, click and drag the file into “Downloads” or another folder in the left-hand menu.

As Chromebooks become mainstream computing devices, they need to be compatible with popular file formats and compression software. Files received over email or downloaded from the internet can often come in the .zip or .rar format. This means that the required files have been ‘zipped’ and need to be ‘extracted’. Luckily, there are a few ways to ZIP and unzip files on Chrome OS.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebookZip And Unzip Files

Method 1: Use the Files App

Unzipping

The Chrome OS Files app, while fairly minimalistic, does decompress zipped files. If you double click on a zipped file, you will notice that the file shows up on the left sidebar of the Files app.

This sidebar is usually the place where connected USB drives or SD cards would show up. So why is your ZIP file showing up there? Well, because Chrome OS handles ZIP files like external storage. They mount these files in such a manner that the zipped content then becomes accessible through the mounted ZIP file.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

In order to extract your required files from this mounted zip, all you need to do is copy the contents of this mounted drive and paste them outside, in the downloads folder.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

These files will then be available to access outside of the zip, and you can ‘eject’ the ZIP file by pressing the arrow button on the right side of the file in the sidebar.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Note: Trying to open a ZIP file from Google Drive will show an error message. This method only works if the ZIP file is in the Downloads folder on your Chromebook.

Zipping

We can sometimes need to send a folder of documents, or some images bundled together in a single file. Zipping is the most common method of sharing folders with other people. It also functions as a file compressor on most operating systems. On the Chromebook, however, the zipping function only zips files together without compressing them at all. The zipped file, then, will be as large as the sum of all the files it contains.

It is important to note that all files that you want to ZIP together must be stored on the Downloads folder on Chrome OS. Trying to ZIP files directly from Google Drive does not work on the Files app. (See Method 2 for zipping/unzipping files stored on Google Drive.)

Now that you have all the files you want to ZIP in the Downloads folder, create a new folder (by pressing Ctrl + E while in the Files app) and put these files inside that folder. So, all the content that you want to ZIP must be inside that one folder only. After you have created such a folder, right-click on the folder. This dropdown menu will appear.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Click on ‘Zip Selection’ and the ZIP with all your selected files will be created in the Downloads folder itself. It will look like this –

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

This ZIP file is now ready to be shared with people. This is how you can ZIP files using the Files app on Chrome OS.

Method 2: Use Zip Extractor

Zip Extractor is an online tool that can unzip files stored in Google Drive or from your Downloads folder. You will have to authorize the tool to access your Google Drive by clicking the blue ‘Authorize’ button. For some reason, you have to authorize access to Google Drive even if you want to unzip a file from your local Downloads folder.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

You will then be able to select the ZIP file that you want to unzip from Google Drive or from your local storage.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Once you select a ZIP file to unzip, ZIP Extractor quickly unzips the file and makes the contents of the file available for download. You can also directly save the unzipped content to your Google Drive. This makes it pretty convenient to work with ZIP files inside Google Drive.

I would only recommend Method 2 if there’s a large ZIP file on Google Drive that you need to unzip. For local files, it would be much more secure to use Method 1, Chrome OS’s default way of handling ZIPs.

Learn how to zip like a ChromeOS pro

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

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Using zip files is a popular way of compressing multiple files into one smaller package. Like other operating systems, ChromeOS makes it easy to zip and unzip a file on Chromebook with built in tools. We’ll show you how it’s done.

How to Zip Files on Chromebook

Zipping and unzipping files both happen in the Files app, which is a built-in app in ChromeOS.

Open your app launcher and click Files.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

You can also open the Files app by using the keyboard shortcut Shift+Alt+M

Use the left sidebar to locate the files you want to zip. Check the circle in front of each file.

  • To select multiple consecutive files: Click the first file, hold the Shift key, and then click the last file.
  • To pick several files, but not all: Hold down Ctrl and click the files you want.
  • To select all files: Press Ctrl+A, which selects all the files in a location.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Right-click the selected files and then select Zip selection. The files are compressed into a zip file titled Archive.zip. It appears in the same folder as the files you just zipped, alphabetically near the top. If you zip a folder, the name is the same as the folder with a .zip extension.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

If you want to rename the archive.zip file, you can. Right-click the file and click Rename.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

How to Unzip Files on Chromebook

Extracting zipped files is not as straightforward. Rather than unzipping the archive, you manually extract files out of it. Fortunately, it’s easy to do that.

Navigate to and double-click the archive.zip file in the left pane to open the archive and display the contents.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

In the expanded archive screen, select and right-click the files you want to extract. Click Copy.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Navigate to the location where you want to extract the files. Right-click and choose Paste. The files you copied are placed in this new location, and you can edit them.

How to zip or unzip files on a chromebook

Files in archived folders can be opened without extracting them, but changes cannot be saved.