To compress a Windows file or folder, you often “zip” it, which results in a ZIP file. It can be compressed using a zip file, and then unzipped for reuse. What if we told you that in Windows 11, you could compress your files and folders to conserve space and utilise them without first decompressing them?
Windows 11 includes a tool for compressing your files that will accomplish this. However, what is it and how do you allow it? I say we find out.
How Does Windows 11 Handle Compressed Files?
Windows’ NTFS file system supports a function called “file compression,” which eliminates unnecessary information from a file in order to make it smaller. This can include things like repeated characters in a text file.
The compression method utilised does its thing without losing any essential information, which is a huge plus. Lossless compression describes this method.
In addition, Windows 11 compresses data in a way that is transparent to installed programmes; they will continue to treat the files as if they were not compressed (transparent compression). This means that the apps do not need to decompress the files in order to read and operate with the data contained within.
Remember that other file systems won’t be able to open the compressed files and directories (only NTFS). In other words, you won’t be able to copy them to a device formatted with the FAT or exFAT file systems.
Folder Compression in Windows 11: How to Set It Up
Here are the procedures you need to take to compress a folder:
- To see the folder’s properties, right-click it in File Explorer and select the option.
- Select the Advanced option under the General menu.
- To reduce storage needs, select “Compress contents” from the “Compress or Encrypt attributes” menu.
- Just hit the OK button, and then hit it again.
After clicking the button, a dialogue box will display to ensure you really want to compress the folder. Apply changes to this folder and subfolders and files is the default radial option selected by Windows. The desired option is OK, so please select it.
You can now compress any additional folders or files you place inside the compressed folder. You don’t necessarily have to compress an entire folder; you can simply compress a single file by completing steps 1-4.
Guide to Enabling System-Wide File Compression
You can compress the entire drive instead than just the files and folders within it.
These are the measures to take:
Click the right mouse button on the drive icon in This PC, and then select Properties.
- To save space, select Compress this drive under the General menu.
- Do as instructed and press the OK button.
- Another dialogue box asking for confirmation of the current one will appear.
- Simply clicking OK will trigger the default setting to compress the entire drive’s contents.
You can now compress the entire drive, including all of its contents. Additionally, any data you copy into the hard drive will be compressed automatically.
Disk Space can be Conserved in Windows 11 by Enabling File Compression.
When using Windows 11, if you enable file compression, you can significantly reduce the amount of storage space needed to save your files. There would be no need for compressed files such as ZIP or additional compression software.
When storage is getting low and you don’t have an external drive on hand, you can use this function to shrink individual files and entire directories.