You might be wondering what the point of any zip utility is these days: after all, both Windows and Mac OS X have built-in support for both creating zip archives and extracting files from them. Admittedly, Windows’ support is superior – you can add files to existing archives as well as browse their contents without extracting the files first – but this functionality is rather basic. It’s adequate for occasional use, but what if you spend a lot of time putting together zip archives and want something a little more user-friendly?

One such tool is the Java-based zipcreator, which is cross-platform, simple to use but remarkably effective. Windows and Linux users will need to install Java JRE first if necessary, but once in place just double-click the downloaded zipcreator.jar file to launch the program. A blank window will appear – click Open to select an existing zip file to explore its contents or add new files to it, or simply start putting together your own compilation of files to zip up for whatever reason.

Files can be added a number of ways: try dragging them from an open window into zipcreator, or click Add to select them via a File Open dialogue box. Accidentally added the wrong file? No problem, just select it and click Remove. When your chosen set of files and folders are in place, click the Save As button to create a new archive, or the Save button to update an existing one.

Although the program is simple to use, it’s worth reading through the online manual at its homepage to get a feel for some its nuances.

Verdict

A simple and capable tool that makes the creation and updating of zip archives much easier than relying on your computer’s built-in tools.