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What is a TAR file extension?

The origin of TAR extension is “Tape Archive”. It’s a UNIX based file archiving format widely used to archive multiple files and sharing them over the internet. TAR files can contain different files like videos and images, even software installation files which can be distributed online. This file format also includes vital information of the files like user permissions, dates, directory structures and more. TAR is only a file archiving format. To compress TAR files, you have to use other compression utilities like GZIP. Popular for open source software distribution, TAR files can be easily unzipped by WinZIp with the following steps.

How to open TAR files

  1. Download and save the TAR file to your computer. If your compressed file was downloaded from the internet, it may be saved in the Downloads folder in your Documents or user directory.
  2. Launch WinZip and open the compressed file by clicking File > Open. If your system has the compressed file extension associated with WinZip program, just double-click on the file.
  3. Select all of the files in the compressed folder or select only the files you want to extract by holding the CTRL key and left-clicking on them.
  4. Click 1-click Unzip and choose Unzip to PC or Cloud in the WinZip toolbar under the Unzip/Share tab.
  5. Select a destination folder to place the extracted TAR files in and click the "Unzip" button.
  6. Find your extracted files in your chosen destination folder.

Unzip TAR file format on Windows or Mac

  • WinZip
  • Windows 10
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 7
  • Windows Vista
  • Windows XP
  • Internet Explorer 8 or later
  • WinZip Mac
  • Mac OS X 10.8, 10.9, or 10.10
  • Intel 64-bit processor
  • Supports Apple Retina Displays
Winzip TAR extractor

WinZip opens and extracts Compressed TAR Files—and many more formats

We created WinZip to open and extract TAR file format, and many more, including all of the following:

  • TAR
  • GZ, TAZ, and TGZ
  • TZ and Z
  • UUencoded
  • XXencoded
  • MIME
  • BinHex
  • Zipx
  • And Zip

Get WinZip now to open your TAR file(s) then enjoy all that the world's most popular compression utility has to offer, including the easiest and most practical file compression, file protection and encryption, complete file management and data backup capabilities, simple file sharing by cloud, social media, and more.