ZIP files offer an efficient and effective way to organize and share multiple files at the same time, but the default ZIP extractor in Windows 11 only permits extracting one ZIP at a time. In order to extract multiple ZIPs at the same time, third-party tools like WinRAR or 7-Zip must be utilized and this guide will walk through these steps to efficiently extract multiple ZIPs simultaneously on Windows 11.
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Working with ZIP archives is an integral component of Windows computing, whether downloading program installers or sharing project files – they help consolidate several files into one manageable package for you to easily open, unpack, and share with colleagues or clients. Unfortunately, Windows 11's native ZIP extractor only enables accessing one ZIP archive at once.
If you need to unzip multiple ZIP files simultaneously, third-party tools like WinRAR and 7-Zip provide this convenient capability. With just a few clicks, quickly extracting multiple archives at the same time into various locations on your PC will take only seconds; saving considerable time over using File Explorer alone for extracting archives manually.
Learn to quickly extract multiple ZIP files at once on Windows 11 by taking advantage of WinRAR and 7-Zip.
- The built-in Windows ZIP extractor can only extract one archive at a time.
- Third-party tools like WinRAR and 7-Zip enable extracting multiple ZIPs simultaneously.
- To use WinRAR, right-click the ZIPs, hover over “WinRAR” and pick an extraction option.
- With 7-Zip, right-click the ZIPs, hover “7-Zip” and choose where to extract the files.
- 7-Zip's command line can unzip all ZIPs in a folder using
7z e *.zip.
- Gathering ZIPs in one location makes batch extraction much easier.
- Extracting multiple ZIPs at once is far faster than doing each one individually.
Steps to Extract Multiple ZIPs with WinRAR in Windows 11
WinRAR is a popular Windows file archiver that makes working with compressed archives fast and easy. Here are the steps to use WinRAR to extract multiple ZIP files simultaneously:
1. Download and Install WinRAR
First, download the latest version of WinRAR from rarlabs.com. Run the installer, accepting the default settings.
2. Gather ZIP Files in One Location
Place all the ZIP files you want to extract in a single folder. This allows WinRAR to easily find and process multiple archives at once.
3. Select the ZIP Files
In File Explorer, browse to the folder containing your ZIP files. Select all the archives you want to extract.
4. Right-click to Extract
Right-click your selection and hover over “WinRAR” in the context menu. Choose one of the extraction options:
- Extract files…: Extracts with custom settings.
- Extract to (folder name): Extracts into a new folder.
- Extract here: Unzip contents into the current folder.
- Extract each archive into a separate folder: Extract each ZIP into its own folder.
The files will rapidly unpack to the destination you picked.
Using 7-Zip to Extract Multiple ZIPs in Windows 11
7-Zip is another free archiving tool for Windows that can also extract multiple ZIPs at the same time:
1. Download and Install 7-Zip
Go to 7-zip.org to download the latest version of 7-Zip. Run the installer using the default configuration.
2. Gather ZIP Files in One Place
As with WinRAR, you'll want to put all the ZIPs you want to unpack in the same folder for easy access.
3. Select the ZIPs
In File Explorer, browse to the folder with your ZIPs. Select all the archives you want to extract.
4. Access Context Menu
Right-click your selection, hover over “7-Zip” and pick an extraction option:
- Extract files…: Custom extraction settings.
- Extract here: Unpack ZIPs into the current folder.
- Extract to “*/”: Extracts each ZIP into a separate folder.
The contents of the archives will quickly unzip to the chosen destinations.
Using the Command Line to Extract Multiple ZIPs
For power users, 7-Zip can also utilize the command line to easily extract multiple ZIPs simultaneously:
1. Add 7-Zip to Path
To use 7-Zip commands system-wide, its install folder needs to be added to your PATH environment variable:
- Find 7-Zip's install folder, usually
- Search for “Edit environment variables” and open the option.
- Under “System variables”, select Path > Edit.
- Click New and paste the 7-Zip install folder path.
- Click OK to save the changes.
2. Open the Command Prompt in the ZIP Folder
Navigate to the folder containing your ZIPs in File Explorer. Right-click and select “Open in Terminal” to launch Command Prompt there.
3. Use the Extract Command
Enter this command and press Enter:
7z e *.zip
This will rapidly unzip all ZIP files in the current folder. You can change the extension to match other archives.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I extract multiple RAR files at once?
WinRAR can extract multiple RAR archives simultaneously using the same right-click menu method for ZIP files. 7-Zip also supports extracting multiple RARs at once through its context menu.
Does Windows 11 support extracting multiple ZIP files natively?
No, Windows 11 itself does not support extracting multiple ZIPs at the same time. You need to use a third-party archiving tool like WinRAR or 7-Zip for this functionality.
Is it safe to download WinRAR or 7-Zip?
Yes, WinRAR and 7-Zip are trustworthy programs used by millions of Windows users worldwide. Make sure to only download them from their official websites.
How do I select multiple ZIP files at once?
In File Explorer, hold down Ctrl while clicking on each ZIP file you want to extract to select multiple archives. Or, click on the first file, hold Shift, and click the last file to select a range.
What's the easiest way to extract multiple ZIPs on Windows 11?
The fastest way is to gather the ZIPs in one folder, select them all, right-click, hover over your chosen archiver in the menu, and pick an extraction option. No settings or configuration is required.
Extracting multiple ZIPs simultaneously with Windows 11's archive tools is made effortless thanks to WinRAR and 7-Zip, two excellent archivers that offer batch extraction features like context menu options or powerful command line support for 7-Zip's extraction commands. By rapidly unpacking several ZIPs at once, these utilities save both time and effort when organizing or sharing files on the Windows 11 computer.