7-Zip has been my compression software of choice ever since I discovered it. It’s not just free but also faster and better than other paid utilities out there. Almost all the features offered in commercial file compression software are available in 7-Zip as well.
A couple of months ago, I came across BandiZip while searching for a way to extract RAR5 archive without installing WinRAR software. I have been testing BandiZip for the last two or three months, not extensively though, on Windows 10, and I am quite impressed with its performance and features.
To start with, BandiZip is another free file archiving utility with great set of features. In many ways, BandiZip is very similar to other file archiving utilities.
Just like other file archiving tools, BandiZip also allows you extract many popular file formats including Zip, ISO, 7Z, RAR, BIN, CAB, WIM, LZMA, JAR, IMG, and UDF. While compressing, it supports Zip, TAR, ISO, 7Z and EXE. This free file compression utility is capable of creating self-extracting files. And of course, you can create password protected files.
The ability to extract RAR5 files is one of the most important features of BandiZip, a feature which is not yet available in 7-Zip. As you likely know, there are very few tools around to extract RAR5 files. For those who don’t know, RAR5 was introduced with WinRAR 5.0 and is better than previous algorithms.
When installed, it integrates into Windows context menu, allowing you to compress or extract files with a few clicks. However, it adds a New Folder entry to the context menu, which is of no use as we can easily create New Folder in Windows with Ctrl+Shift+N hotkey. You can remove this New Folder from context menu by navigating to BandiZip Settings.
There is a feature to view images in the archive without actually extracting the archive, but I didn’t find it very useful.
And if you’re eager to know how fast BandiZip is when compared to 7-Zip, all I can say is that speed is good as I have yet to test those things. The BandiZip website claims it’s faster than 7-Zip though.
There are plenty of options under Settings pane to change default settings as well as option to cascading menu. While it’s a good idea to download and install the program, a portable version of the software is also available for users who prefer using portable applications. The current version of BandiZip is compatible with Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and the new Windows 10.
And if you own a Mac as well, BandiZip is available for Mac too!