Difference between ZIP and RAR

The differences between Zip and Rar are among the most researched questions. Many people are searching on search engines to find out what the differences are between zip and rar. Today, let’s explain the answer to this most researched but quite simple question. Here are the details…

ZIP and RAR Developer


  • Developer: The ZIP format was developed by the PKWARE company, founded by Phil Katz in 1989.
  • Compatibility: Initially designed for use in the MS-DOS environment, ZIP has been widely integrated into other operating systems and platforms over time. Therefore, ZIP files are generally supported by Windows, macOS, Linux, and many other operating systems.
  • Open Source: The ZIP format is an open-source standard, facilitating its use and implementation by other software developers.
  • Direct Support: ZIP is directly supported and integrated by many file archiving and compression programs, making ZIP files easily accessible to a broad user base.


  • Developer: The RAR format was developed by Eugene Roshal and is distributed by the RARLAB company, with Eugene Roshal’s name being part of the RAR acronym.
  • Compatibility: RAR was initially developed exclusively for the Windows platform, but versions compatible with other operating systems have been released over time. However, RAR files are generally more common among Windows users.
  • WinRAR Software: The RAR format is associated with specialized software called WinRAR, used for compression and decompression operations. This software is commonly used to manage RAR files and may require third-party software support on non-Windows operating systems.
  • Compression Capabilities: RAR generally offers more effective compression ratios, allowing files to be stored in smaller sizes. This feature is advantageous, especially for users who want to manage large files more efficiently.
ZIP and RAR Compression Ratio
ZIP and RAR Compression Ratio

ZIP and RAR Compression Ratio

ZIP: Generally, ZIP is less effective in terms of compression ratio compared to RAR. However, it is widely used because it is supported by a large user base.

RAR: RAR generally offers higher compression ratios, meaning that files can be stored in smaller sizes. However, to achieve this advantage, WinRAR, which is specialized software, is often required.

ZIP and RAR Encryption

ZIP: The ZIP format has encryption features but is generally considered less secure.

RAR: RAR provides stronger encryption and is therefore generally considered more secure.

ZIP and RAR Split Archive

ZIP: It is possible to split ZIP files, but this is generally a less used feature.

RAR: RAR offers a better structure for splitting large files into smaller parts. This allows large files to be more easily portable and shareable.

ZIP and RAR Platform Support

ZIP: ZIP is generally supported and integrated by multiple operating systems.

RAR: RAR is particularly popular on the Windows platform, but support on other operating systems is often provided by third-party software.

In conclusion, the choice between ZIP and RAR depends on the user’s needs and preferences. Generally, if broad compatibility is desired, ZIP may be preferred, but if higher compression ratios and security are important, RAR may be the choice.

Difference between ZIP and RAR
Difference between ZIP and RAR

Difference between ZIP and RAR:

1 ZIP is an archival format devised by Phil Katz to serve as a standard for lossless data compression. RAR is a proprietary archival format developed by Eugene Roshal for lossless data compression.
2 ZIP is freely available as an open standard with widespread implementations, supported on nearly all platforms. RAR is not free and necessitates the use of a third-party tool, WinRAR archiver, for compression and decompression.
3 The compression efficiency of ZIP is generally lower compared to the RAR format. RAR exhibits superior compression efficiency when compared to ZIP.
4 ZIP provides password-based protection for files. RAR does not offer password-based protection.
5 ZIP files can be created using various programs such as WinRAR, WinZIP, Freebyte Zip, etc. RAR files are typically associated with a single program, WinRAR.
6 ZIP employs the ZIP 2.0 encryption algorithm, which is relatively less robust. RAR utilizes the more efficient AES-128 encryption algorithm.
7 Filename extensions for ZIP files are .zip and .zipx. Filename extensions for RAR files include .rar, .rev, .r00, .r01.
8 ZIP uses the DEFLATE compression algorithm, which is less efficient compared to newer compression methods. RAR employs a compression algorithm that is substantially more effective and efficient than DEFLATE.

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