The classic file-compression utility for Windows PC users remains WinZip- now owned by Corel. As straightforward compression features are now built-in to Windows, the question remains as to why anyone would pay money for an extra utility such as Corel WinZip Pro 11.1. Has the rise of huge hard drives and broadband compromised one of the main reasons for these applications? Not when they're as good as Corel WinZip Pro 11.1.

Is there any point?

Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 promises – and in some cases delivers – better compression for file formats such as Jpeg and MP3, which are already highly packed file formats.

The actual amount of compression achieved by Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 in such circumstances is typically rather small (generally between 2 and 5 percent). Corel WinZip Pro 11.1, however, handles huge file compressions better than the standard Windows zip utility.

Such facilities alone won't justify the price of Corel WinZip Pro 11.1, but the range of extra features will. If you need to protect the security of your files, Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 offers encryption tools (128bit and 256bitp).

Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 supports a wide range of compression formats, such as RAR and CAB archives. As well as this, you can create self-extracting archives which will open without the need for Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 to be present.

These are the basics, which anyone would expect from a compression utility such as Corel WinZip Pro 11.1. Where Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 starts to stretch ahead is in terms of its archiving features, and it is capable of functioning almost as a backup application. You can schedule tasks in Corel WinZip Pro 11.1, as well as burn compressed files directly to CD or DVD.

Plus, Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 has added an improved preview function for your archives.

Corel WinZip Pro 11.1's extensions to the Windows shell are a model of efficiency. And Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 has been updated for Windows Vista. In general WinZip is also easier to use than StuffIt: aside from the drag-and-drop icon to create archives, the latter can be rather fiddly at times.

Corel WinZip Pro 11.1: Specs

  • 1GHz processor
  • Windows Vista/XP/2000
  • 256MB of RAM
  • 1GB hard drive space
  • 1GHz processor
  • Windows Vista/XP/2000
  • 256MB of RAM
  • 1GB hard drive space

OUR VERDICT

If you are looking to do more than simply squash down files and open zip attachments, Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 will prove a great purchase. Given its elegant interface we would recommend Corel WinZip Pro 11.1 as the number one compression program. See also Stuffit Deluxe 11.0

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