An archive will exist only if it contains one or more files, so you have to add them to the archive.
Adding files and folders is easy: you may have pressed the "New" button to create a new archive or you may have opened an existing archive in ZipGenius and the "Add" button is enabled (=archive type supports compression), but in both cases you will see the compression dialog show up:

You will see a tabbed dialog where each page hosts a number of options that is different from one archive format to another

FILES
Here you can select one or more files and/or folders in the explorer view you will see: you can select multiple files/folders that are close each other by clicking on the first item to select, then holding SHIFT and clicking on the last one. If you want to select multiple items that are not close each other, hold down the CTRL key and click on any item you want to select. In few words, it is the same way to select files/folders required by Windows Explorer.

MAIN SETTINGS

  • Compression level: there are 6 compression levels available. The first one just stores files without compression and it's the fastest way to zip files; second and third levels offer proportionally better compression but they are slower than the previous one; "maximum" level offers the best compression ratio and it's the slowest one. These levels compress almost every kind of file that can be compressed, but files like GIF, JPG, TAR, GZ, ZIP, ARJ, ZOO are only stored because they are already compressed; if you want to try to compress them further, you must choose the "brutal" compression level.
    The 6th level is "Brutal+UPX" and is a ZipGenius 6 new feature available for just ZIP file format: it allows to compress executable files like EXE, OCX and DLL throught the UPX executable compressor. If you want to zip executable files, you may choose this level and try to compress them further and obtaining better compression ratios than using the "Maximum" or "Brutal" levels.
    In order to activate this compression level you need to download upx.exe from UPX web site and put it in ZipGenius program folder (usually "C:\Program Files\ZipGenius 6\"). When you selected "Brutal+UPX" from copression options dialog, then you will see a new dialog that acts as an UPX interface; that dialog will show a list of all the files that UPX can compress between those you selected from ZIP compression. Now you have to set UPX compression level and to click "Start". The UPX compressor will try to compress the listed files and it will return a result beside the filename in that list ("Compressed", "Can't compress", "Already compressed"). When the UPX compressor will have finished its job, you will have to click "Continue" and to wait for the common ZIP compression process to finish.
  • Move files: selected files will be deleted from their original position after compression.
  • Path: this box lets you choose whether to store the full or relative path info, or to store files without path info. When you will extract these files again, you will get back the original folder structure in the destination folder.
  • Include subfolders: use this option when you want to compress a folder and all its subfolders.
  • Password: check this option and write a password to protect files being added. Please note: a standard zip password protects files only from extraction but everyone is still able to read the entire file list of an archive. If you need better protection, you may want to encrypt a zip archive in CZIP format.
  • Add hidden and system files: this option allows to compress files which have "Hidden" and/or "System" attributes set.
  • Add files with "Archive" attribute: this option allows to compress files which have only the "Archive" attribute set: system and hidden files are excluded.
  • Reset "Archive" attribute: this option removes the "Archive" attribute from compressed files.
  • File types: when adding a folder, this box lets you choose which file types should be included in the zip file. By default, a folder is added with the "*.*" pattern, which means "all files", but you can specify only certain file types. Example: if you want to add only .JPG and .BMP files, write *.jpg;*.bmp . When you need to specify multiple file extensions, separe them with a ";" so the program will be able to compile a list of file types to consider.
  • How to compress lets you set how the program should add files to the archive:
    • Add files: files are just added to the archive; if a file with same filename already is in the archive, that will be replaced.
    • Freshen files: this option won't add any new file to the archive, but it will only update already existing files if files being added are their newer version.
    • Update files: just as Freshen files, but this option also adds new files to the archive.

ADVANCED SETTINGS
This page allows you to specify which files or group of files must be included and/or excluded from compression process. You may specify file/folder names with wildcards like * and ?. You can specify multiple entries using ; between them. If you don't specify anything in these fields, the program will just add all selected items and no one will be excluded.

MULTIVOLUME ARCHIVE
Some archive types allow user to create multivolume archives (ZIP and CAB, in particular), so he/she will get an archive that can be distributed on a set of removable media (floppy disk, CD-ROM and similar media).
If current archive type supports multivolume archives creation, you will see the page labeled "MULTIVOLUME", where you can set the related options. These differ from one archive type to another and they usually allow to set volume size and volume files destination.


Is it possible to create new archives without using the main application?
Yes, it is by using the context menu: select one or more files and/or folders, and click on one of them with the right mouse button. You will see the context menu with many commands, included those installed by ZipGenius (you can recognize them by the ZG logo).

The archive creation features are the following:

  1. Add to (filename).zip
  2. Add to any ZIP archive...
  3. Create  new archive with options
  4. Create and e-mail archive
  5. Compress to 7-zip

The options #1 and #3 are almost the same, but the second one allows to se compression options as if you were using the main application.

The option #5 is a new feature and it allows to create 7-zip archives, an open source compression algorhythm that is changing the way to compress files, that offers performances that can be compared to those of RAR and ACE (warning: it may require a lot of RAM at higher compression levels!)


Does ZipGenius support drag and drop compression?
Yes, it does. When an archive is already open in ZipGenius, you can add files and/or folders by simply dragging them onto ZipGenius files list, then you willl see the compression options dialog and you will be allowed to begin compression.
 

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