WinRAR

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WinRAR
WinRAR Logo 2018.png
WinRAR 5.60 in Windows 10
WinRAR 5.60 in Windows 10
Developer(s)Eugene Roshal (developer),
Alexander Roshal (distributor)[1]
Initial release22 April 1995; 23 years ago (1995-04-22)
Stable release5.61 (October 1, 2018; 2 months ago (2018-10-01)[2]) [±]
Written inC++
Operating systemWindows XP and later
PlatformIA-32, x64
Size~3 MB
Available in46 languages[3]
List of languages
Arabic, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Belarusian, Bulgarian, Burmese, Catalan, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Estonian, Finnish, French, Galician, Georgian, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Lithuanian, Mongolian, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Brazilian Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian Cyrillic, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian, Uzbek, Vietnamese
TypeFile archiver
LicenseTrialware
Websiterarlab.com

WinRAR is a trialware file archiver utility for Windows, developed by Eugene Roshal of win.rar GmbH. It can create and view archives in RAR or ZIP file formats,[4] and unpack numerous archive file formats. To enable the user to test the integrity of archives, WinRAR embeds CRC32 or BLAKE2 checksums for each file in each archive. WinRAR supports creating encrypted, multi-part and self-extracting archives.

WinRAR is a Windows-only app. The author has also released an Android app called "RAR for Android",[5] and command-line utilities called "RAR" and "UNRAR" (widely released since autumn of 1993),[6] available for macOS,[3] Linux, FreeBSD, Windows, and MS-DOS.

Evolution[edit]

WinRAR and the RAR file format have evolved over time. Support for the archive format RAR5, using the same RAR file extension as earlier versions, was added in version 5.0;[7] files in the older RAR file format have since been referred to as RAR4. WinRAR versions before 5.0 do not support RAR5 archives;[8] only older versions of WinRAR run on Windows versions prior to XP, and cannot open RAR5 archives.

The RAR5 file format increased the maximum dictionary size to 1 GiB; 11 different compression directory sizes from 1 MiB to 1 GiB are available, with the default in version 5 increased from 4 MiB to 32 MiB, typically improving compression ratio. AES encryption, when used, was increased from 128- to 256-bit. Maximum path length for files in RAR and ZIP archives is increased to 2048 characters.[8]

Options added in v5.0 include 256-bit BLAKE2 file-hashing algorithm instead of default 32-bit CRC32, duplicate file detection, NTFS hard and symbolic links, and Quick Open record to allow large archives to be opened faster.[8]

The RAR5 file format removed comments for each file (though archive comment still remains), authenticity verification, and specialized compression algorithms for text and multimedia files. RAR5 also changed the file name for split volumes from "archivename.rNN" to "archivename.partNN.rar".[8]

Features[edit]

When creating RAR archives:

  • Support for maximum file size of 16 EiB, about 1.8 × 1019 bytes or 18 million TB
  • Compression dictionary from 1 MiB to 1 GiB (it is limited to 256 MiB on 32-bit editions of Windows, although 32-bit Windows still can decompress archives with 1 GiB dictionary; default size is 32 MiB)[8]
  • Options, enabled by default, to optimise compression for executables for x86 processors and the obsolete 64-bit Itanium, and delta compression.
  • Optional 256-bit BLAKE2 file hash can replace default 32-bit CRC32 file checksum[8]
  • Optional encryption using AES with a 256-bit key[10]
  • Optional data redundancy is provided in the form of Reed–Solomon recovery records and recovery volumes, allowing reconstruction of damaged archives (including reconstruction of entirely missed volumes)
  • Optional "quick open record" to open RAR files faster[8]
  • Ability to create multi-volume (split) archives[11]
  • Ability to create self-extracting files (multi-volume self-extracting archives are supported;[11] the self-extractor can execute commands, such as running a specified program before or after self-extraction[12])
  • Support for advanced NTFS file system options, such as NTFS hard and symbolic links[8]
  • Support for maximum path length up to 2048 characters (stored in the UTF-8 format)[8]
  • Optional archive comment (stored in the UTF-8 format)[8]
  • Optional file time stamp preservation: creation, last access, high precision modification times
  • Optional file deduplication

License[edit]

The software is distributed as "try before you buy"; it may be used without charge for 40 days.[13] In China, a free-to-use personal edition has been provided officially since 2015.[14]

Although archiving with the RAR format is proprietary, RarLab supplies as copyrighted freeware the C++ source code of the current UnRAR unpacker, with a license allowing it to be used in any software, thus enabling others to produce software capable of unpacking, but not creating, RAR archives.[15]

RAR for Android is free of charge. It displays advertisements; for a payment they can be disabled.[5] A license for WinRAR does not provide ad-suppression for RAR for Android.

Security[edit]

Self-extracting archives created with versions before 5.31 (including the executable installer of WinRAR itself) are vulnerable to DLL hijacking: they may load and use DLLs named UXTheme.dll, RichEd32.dll and RichEd20.dll if they are in the same folder as the executable file.[8][16]

It was widely reported that WinRAR v5.21 and earlier had a remote code execution (RCE) vulnerability which could allow a remote attacker to insert malicious code into a self-extracting executable (SFX) file being created by a user, "putting over 500 million users of the software at risk".[17] However, examination of the claim revealed that, while the vulnerability existed, the result was merely an SFX which delivered its payload when executed; published responses dismissed the threat, one saying "If you can find suckers who will trust a .exe labelled as self-extracting archive ... then you can trick them into running your smuggled JavaScript".[18][19]

History[edit]

Versions[edit]

  • Command line RAR and UNRAR were first released in autumn 1993.[6]
  • Early development version WinRAR 1.54b was released in 1995 as Windows 3.x software.
  • Version 3.00 (2002-05): the new RAR3 archive format is implemented. The new archives cannot be managed by older versions of WinRAR.
  • Version 3.41 (2004-12): adds support for Linux .Z archives like GZIP and BZIP2. New options include storing entire file paths and restoring compressed NTFS files.
  • Version 3.50 (2005-08): adds support for interface skins and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition.[20]
  • Version 3.60 (2006-08): adds multithreaded version of the compression algorithm, which improves compression speed on systems with multiple dual-core or hyper-threading-enabled CPUs.
  • Version 3.80 (2008-09): adds support for ZIP archives, which contain Unicode file names in UTF-8.[21]
  • Version 3.90 (2009-05): adds support for the x86-64 architecture and Windows 7. Multithreaded support is enhanced.[8]
  • Version 3.91 is the last release that supports Valencian.
  • Version 3.92 is the last release that supports Serbian Cyrillic and Serbian Latin.
  • Version 4.00 (2011-03): decompression is sped up by up to 30%. Windows 98, Windows ME, and Windows NT are no longer supported; the minimum Windows version required is Windows 2000.[8]
  • Version 4.10 (2012-01): removes all ZIP limitations now allowing unlimited number of files and archive size. WinRAR now also allows creation of multivolume ZIP files. ZIP archives now include Unicode file names.[8]
  • Version 4.20 (2012-06): compression speed in SMP mode is increased significantly, but this improvement was made at the expense of increased memory usage. ZIP compression now uses SMP as well. The default SMP mode cannot handle text; text compression is significantly worse unless additional switches are used. Also, Windows 2000 compatibility was removed.[8]
  • Version 5.00 (2013-09): the RAR5 archive format is implemented. RAR5 compressed archives cannot be managed by old versions of WinRAR. The RAR 5 format improves multicore processor utilization, and adds a larger dictionary size of up to 1 GiB with 64-bit WinRAR. Special optional compression algorithms optimized for RGB bitmaps, raw audio files, Itanium executables, and plain text, which were supported by earlier versions, are supported only in the older RAR format, not RAR5.[8] Optional optimized compression of x86 executables and delta compression (for structured table data) are supported in both file formats.
  • Version 5.50 (2017-08): adds support for a master password which can be used to encrypt passwords stored in WinRAR. The default RAR format is changed to version 5. Adds support for decompressing Lzip archives; adds support for high precision file dates, longer file names and larger file sizes for TAR archives.[8]
  • Version 5.60 (2018-06): repairing of protected RAR5 archives was improved. Automatic detection of the encoding of ZIP archive comments. Recognition of GZIP files with arbitrary preceding data as an actual GZIP archive.[8]

Operating systems support[edit]

More recent versions do not support many older operating systems. Versions supporting older operating systems may still be available, but not maintained:

Easter eggs[edit]

  • Up until version 5.50, clicking on the WinRAR logo in "About WinRAR" Help menu made the ocean surf and waves move; mouse clicking with Shift pressed on the logo generated a sailboat to the right of "WINRAR".[24] In later versions (e.g. 5.61), clicking on the WinRAR logo starts or pauses more elaborate randomly-generated animation (with objects moving across the sky and the ocean, and with animated astronomical objects).
  • In the same dialog pressing the book icon causes it to bounce like a ball until it comes to rest, with the Windows exclamation sound at each bounce.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ (Russia, Chelyabinsk) WinRAR 3.40 release notes by Eugene Roshal (in Russian)
  2. ^ "Latest changes in WinRAR".
  3. ^ a b RAR download page
  4. ^ Manuel Masiero (18 March 2013)"Compression Performance: 7-Zip, MagicRAR, WinRAR, WinZip" Tom's Hardware. Retrieved 27 November 2013.
  5. ^ a b RAR for Android; RARsoft.
  6. ^ a b Voloshin, Kirill (2011-03-10). Интервью по переписке [Interview by correspondence] (in Russian). Retrieved 2014-10-27.
  7. ^ Martin Brinkmann (29 April 2013)"WinRAR 5.0 introduces the new RAR 5 format. What you need to know" Ghacks. Retrieved 27 November 2013.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u "Latest changes in WinRAR (cumulative release notes for all versions)". Rarlab.com. Archived from the original on 6 August 2010. Updated with each new beta test or released version. Current page has versions 4.00 and higher; archived page linked here has versions 3.70–3.93; older archived versions go back to 3.00
  9. ^ "Best Archive Tool". DonationCoder.com. 2005-09-05. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
  10. ^ "WinRAR 5 Final Released" Techno360.in. Retrieved 27 November 2013.
  11. ^ a b Martin Brinkmann (7 September 2011). "How To Split Large Files Into Multiple Smaller Ones". gHacks Tech News. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  12. ^ WinRAR Help – GUI SFX modules: setup commands
  13. ^ RAR and WinRAR END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT (EULA), retrieved 2014-01-04
  14. ^ "软众信息-WinRAR独家总代理商 最新官方简体中文版下载 支持64位非破解版压缩软件:软件介绍-致用户的一封信". www.winrar.com.cn. Retrieved 2016-10-18.
  15. ^ "Downloads, UnRAR for various platforms, and source. License says "The source code of UnRAR utility is freeware"
  16. ^ Kanthak, Stefan (7 February 2016). "Executable installers are vulnerable^WEVIL (case 25): WinRAR's installer and self-extractors allow arbitrary (remote) code execution and escalation of privilege". SecLists.org.
  17. ^ Shaikh Rafia (September 2015). "WinRAR Exploit Could Put 500 Million Users at Risk". Wccftech.com. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  18. ^ Darren Pauli (30 September 2015). "Smuggle mischievous JavaScript into WinRAR archives? Sure, why not". The Register. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  19. ^ "WinRAR Vulnerability Is Complete Bullshit". Darknet. 1 October 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  20. ^ "WinRAR download and support. WinRAR is a powerful Windows tool to compress and decompress zip, rar and many other formats: Knowledge Base". Win-rar.com. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
  21. ^ "WinRAR archiver, a powerful tool to process RAR and ZIP files". Rarlab.com. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
  22. ^ "RAR 2.50 – Stats, Downloads and Screenshots". WinWorld. Retrieved 14 August 2017.
  23. ^ a b "Downloads for: WinRAR, RAR for Mac OS X, RAR for Linux, RAR for DOS & OS/2, RAR for FreeBSD, with 40 days free trial". Winrar.co.nz. Retrieved 15 August 2017.
  24. ^ Roshan Karkera (5 January 2013)"Hidden Easter Egg in WinRAR Application" Techie inspire. Retrieved 27 November 2013.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]