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Explorer Context Menu Enhancements

You can access many WinZip® features directly from the context menus of My Computer and Windows Explorer. When you right click on files or folders in My Computer or Windows Explorer, Windows displays a context (pop-up) menu containing actions that are appropriate for the selected items. WinZip can add entries to the context menu that allow you to open and create archives, add and extract files, mail archives, etc.

Configuring the context menu

You can configure WinZip's context menu enhancements using the Explorer Enhancements tab of WinZip's Configuration Window.

Note: in order to change the settings on the Explorer Enhancements tab in WinZip's Configuration window, you may need administrative privileges. If you are using Windows Vista or Windows 7, right click on the WinZip shortcut on the Desktop and select Run as administrator. This operation allows you to gain administrative privileges by elevating your user rights via the User Account Control window.

Alternatively, if WinZip is configured to display its entries in a submenu of the Explorer context menu, you can access the Configuration window directly by right clicking any file or folder in an Explorer window and then clicking Configure in the WinZip submenu.

In the Configuration window you'll find options on how and where WinZip's menu items are displayed, and you can enable or disable many of the items individually. Click the Help button or press F1 in the dialog for specific help on the options.

Using the context menu

To use the context menu, simply right click on a file or folder in My Computer or Windows Explorer. WinZip will add items to the context menu that are appropriate to the file or folder you selected. These items will appear either in the main right-click shortcut menu or in a submenu labeled WinZip, depending on your configuration option.

Some WinZip context menu items are also appropriate for multiple selections. For example, you can select several files and add them all to a Zip file (.zip or .zipx) in one operation, or you can select multiple Zip files and extract from all of them at once. To do this, left click a file or folder to select the first item, hold down the Ctrl key and left click to select additional items, and then right click any selected item to pop up the context menu. See your Windows help for more ways to select multiple files.

Main context menu items

These items appear in the main Explorer right-click shortcut menu if the selected item is an archive.

  • Open with WinZip: starts WinZip and opens the selected archive. If multiple archives are selected, a separate WinZip window will be opened for each archive. See also the separate Open with WinZip submenu entry described below.
  • Print: this is a standard Windows menu entry; however, if the selected item is an archive, Windows will use WinZip to print a list of files contained in the archive.

These items appear in the main Explorer right-click shortcut menu if the selected item is a WinZip job.

  • Run with WinZip: starts the WinZip job.
  • Edit with WinZip: opens the WinZip Job Wizard so you can edit your job file.

This item appears in the main Explorer context menu if the selected item is a WinZip registration file (.wzmul).

  • Register WinZip: uses the contents of the registration file to register this copy of WinZip.

Submenu items

These are the menu entries you may see in the WinZip submenu. The actual entries that appear in any particular case depend on the type(s) of file(s) you have selected. Note: these items will appear in the main menu rather than a submenu if you have cleared the Display context menu items in a submenu checkbox in your configuration.

  • Add to Zip file: adds the selected items to a new or existing Zip file. The Add window appears in which you can specify the Zip file name, and WinZip remains open after the add operation is complete.
  • Add to filename: adds the selected items to the named Zip file; the name is based on the name of the selected item or the folder name if multiple items are selected. WinZip adds the selected items to the Zip file, creating a new Zip file if necessary.
  • Add to recently used Zip file: opens a submenu listing recently used Zip files. The selected items are added to the Zip file you pick from the list. Note: this item is enabled or disabled by the configuration option labeled Add to recently used Zip file .
  • Open with WinZip: this is a separate entry from the Open with WinZip that appears at the top of the main context menu when an archive is selected. It appears when the selected item is a self-extracting archive (.exe) or a media "skin" file for programs such as Windows Media Player (.wmz, etc.). These types of files are not associated with WinZip, so Windows will place a standard Open option at the top of the menu; Open will start the program (if it is a self-extracting .exe file) or open the file in the media player (if it is a skin file). However, these file types canalso be opened with WinZip, just like standard Zip files. To do this, choose Open with WinZip from the submenu.
  • Note: this item is enabled or disabled by the configuration option labeled Open unassociated archives with WinZip.
  • Zip and E-Mail filename: WinZip compresses the selected items into a temporary Zip file with the specified name, creates a new e-mail message, and attaches the Zip file. If any of the selected files are images, you will be presented with the WinZip - Zip and E-Mail dialog which will allow you to resize the images prior to zipping; this resize operation will not affect the original files but only the files contained in the new Zip file. You can then address and send the e-mail as you usually would. WinZip deletes the temporary Zip file when it is no longer needed.
  • Zip and E-Mail Plus: this item is similar to Zip and E-Mail filename, but in addition to allowing you to resize your selected image files, you can specify the filename to be used for the Zip file, select a compression type, and encrypt the files contained in the Zip file.
  • Configure: displays the Configuration window for WinZip's Explorer enhancements, including the context menu. This allows you to adjust the context menu and other options without starting WinZip. Note that this option is only available if WinZip's context menu items appear in a submenu.

The following submenu items appear only if the selected item is an archive or, in some cases, multiple archives or self-extracting archives.

  • Extract to: WinZip's Extract window appears and you can choose a folder to which the files in the archive(s) will be extracted. Note: this menu entry also appears when you use the right mouse button to drag and drop an archive.
  • Extract to here: the files in the archive(s) are extracted to the folder that is displayed in the Explorer window. Note: this menu entry also appears when you use the right mouse button to drag and drop an archive.
  • Extract to folder : the files in the archive are extracted to the specified folder, which is created if necessary. The folder name is derived from the archive name. Note: this item is enabled or disabled by the configuration option labeled Extract to .
  • Extract to here using file names for folders: this item appears only if multiple archives are selected. The files in the archives are extracted to subfolders of the currently displayed folder ("here"), using the archive names for the subfolder names. For example, if the Explorer window shows the folder Downloads and you choose this option to extract from the Zip files One.zip and Two.zip, the files are extracted to Downloads\One and Downloads\Two.
  • Extract to folder: opens a menu listing folders to which files have recently been extracted. The files in the archive(s) are extracted to the folder you pick from the submenu. Note: this item is enabled or disabled by the configuration option labeled Extract to folder .
  • Create Self-Extractor (.Exe): starts WinZip Self-Extractor, which allows you to create a self-extracting program file (.exe) from the Zip file. This option is available only if the selection consists of a single non-self-extracting Zip file.
  • E-mail filename: creates a new e-mail message and attaches the selected archive. This option appears only if a single archive is selected.
  • Encrypt: encrypts all files currently in the selected Zip file(s). You will be asked for a password and an encryption method. This option appears only if all of the selected files are Zip files.

Related Topics:

Using the Explorer Interface

Explorer Enhancements (Configuration Dialog)