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Using the Alternate Extension

In an effort to improve network security, many administrators prevent access to e-mail attachments with certain extensions. Some administrators have set a policy to block Zip files as attachments.

If you wish to be able to receive Zip files as attachments from a safe and reliable source, but your administrator has blocked the .zip or .zipx extensions, you can do so using an alternate extension.

An alternate extension is simply a file name extension other than .zip or .zipx that WinZip® will recognize as being a Zip file. For example, if you set .abc as the alternate extension, WinZip would recognize a file named july-sales.abc as a Zip file, and you would be able to open the file in WinZip by double-clicking it in Windows Explorer or your e-mail program.

To set an alternate extension:

  1. Open the WinZip Options window. Click WinZip Options in the Settings tab.
  2. Open the Integration tab of the WinZip Options window.

    Note: in order to change certain settings, you will need administrative privileges. If required, the User Account Control window will open so you can grant WinZip the required administrative rights to make the requested changes.

  3. In the Associate WinZip with group, check the box labeled Alternate extension for Zip files.
  4. Type the alternate extension you want to use in the space provided.
  5. Click OK.

This will associate WinZip with the extension you specified so that double clicking on a file with that extension will open the file in WinZip.

Note that WinZip will not automatically use the alternate extension when creating new Zip files. However, there are many ways to do this. For example:

  • When you are naming a new Zip file in WinZip, type the name you want to use, including the alternate extension.
  • Create the Zip file normally and then rename it in Windows Explorer.
  • In Windows Explorer, right click on the file(s) you want to zip, choose WinZip from the shortcut menu, click Add to Zip file, and supply the name you want to use, including the alternate extension.

To remove the alternate extension, simply uncheck the check box labeled Alternate extension for Zip files on the Integration tab of the WinZip Options window.