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How to add files to an existing ZIP file on Windows 10

When you zip a file, it appears to be a very final sort of act. On the surface of it, the zipped file appears to be a closed off container that nothing can be added to but you can add files to an existing ZIP file pretty easily. Here’s how.

Add files to existing ZIP file

The easiest way to add files to an existing ZIP file is to drag and drop them on to the zipped file. You will see a ‘+Copy’ tool tip. When you release your mouse and the files, they will be added to the zipped file. The files be added to the root of the zipped file. You won’t find it in a separate folder inside the zipped file.

The above method works regardless of which archiving utility you use. It can be 7zip or Winrar. In either case, drag & drop will do the trick.

You can also use the archiving app’s interface to add files to an existing ZIP file. Both WinRar and 7Zip have one. To add files to an existing ZIP file open 7-Zip. You should put the ZIP file and the other files you want to add to it in the same folder to make things easier.

In the 7-Zip app, navigate to the folder with the ZIP file and the other files. Select the files, and click the Add button at the top. In the window that opens set the Archive format to ZIP, and in the Update mode, select ‘Update and add files’. Click Ok, and the files will be added to the zipped file.

You can do this for other archive types too. It’s not restricted to just a zip file. You can add files to an existing 7z, TAR, and WIM file as well.

What you can’t do is remove a file from a zipped file. If you want to do that, you have to create a new one and omit the one you intended to remove from the zip file.

If you copy/add a file to the zipped file that is already in the archived file, you will see an alert asking you if you want to copy and replace it, or if you want to skip it. There’s no option to keep both files. If you need to add a second/newer version of a file to a zipped file, you will have to rename it. This holds true for all types of archives and archive utilities that you use on Windows 10.

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