How to Extract RAR Files for Free

by Contributor ; Updated September 15, 2017

Items you will need

  • 7-Zip for Windows

  • RAR file

RAR is a file format often used to store compressed files. Software installation packages are sometimes saved in RAR format to facilitate convenient archiving and downloading from the Internet. A RAR file must be uncompressed, or extracted, before the contents within the archive can be used. Windows provides native support for extracting ZIP files but does not support the RAR format. Address this shortcoming by installing 7-Zip, a free, open source software application.

Open a Web browser and navigate to the 7-Zip.org website. Download the 7-Zip software package and install it on your computer. This open source software is free for you to use.

Browse to the location of the RAR file that you wish to uncompress. Right-click the file and choose “7-Zip” from the drop-down menu. Click "Extract files..."

Select a destination folder for the contents extracted from the RAR archive and click "OK."

Wait while 7-Zip extracts the RAR archive into a folder that will be given the same name as the file you are extracting. The contents of the RAR file are now ready for you to use.

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