unzip - list, test and extract compressed files in a ZIP archive
unzip [-Z] [-cflptuvz[abjnoqsCLMVX$/:]] file[.zip] [file(s) ...]
[-x xfile(s) ...] [-d exdir]
unzip will list, test, or extract files from a ZIP archive, commonly
found on MS-DOS systems. The default behavior (with no options) is to
extract into the current directory (and subdirectories below it) all
files from the specified ZIP archive. A companion program, zip(1L),
creates ZIP archives; both programs are compatible with archives cre-
ated by PKWARE’s PKZIP and PKUNZIP for MS-DOS, but in many cases the
program options or default behaviors differ.
Path of the ZIP archive(s). If the file specification is a
wildcard, each matching file is processed in an order determined
by the operating system (or file system). Only the filename can
be a wildcard; the path itself cannot. Wildcard expressions are
similar to those supported in commonly used Unix shells (sh,
ksh, csh) and may contain:
* matches a sequence of 0 or more characters
? matches exactly 1 character
[...] matches any single character found inside the brackets;
ranges are specified by a beginning character, a hyphen,
and an ending character. If an exclamation point or a
caret (‘!’ or ‘^’) follows the left bracket, then the
range of characters within the brackets is complemented
(that is, anything except the characters inside the
brackets is considered a match).
(Be sure to quote any character that might otherwise be inter-
preted or modified by the operating system, particularly under
Unix and VMS.) If no matches are found, the specification is
assumed to be a literal filename; and if that also fails, the
suffix .zip is appended. Note that self-extracting ZIP files
are supported, as with any other ZIP archive; just specify the
.exe suffix (if any) explicitly.
An optional list of archive members to be processed, separated
by spaces. (VMS versions compiled with VMSCLI defined must
delimit files with commas instead. See -v in OPTIONS below.)
Regular expressions (wildcards) may be used to match multiple
members; see above. Again, be sure to quote expressions that
would otherwise be expanded or modified by the operating system.
An optional list of archive members to be excluded from process-
ing. Since wildcard characters match directory separators
(‘/’), this option may be used to exclude any files that are in
subdirectories. For example, ‘‘unzip foo *.[ch] -x */*’’ would
extract all C source files in the main directory, but none in
any subdirectories. Without the -x option, all C source files
in all directories within the zipfile would be extracted.
An optional directory to which to extract files. By default,
all files and subdirectories are recreated in the current direc-
tory; the -d option allows extraction in an arbitrary directory
(always assuming one has permission to write to the directory).
This option need not appear at the end of the command line; it
is also accepted before the zipfile specification (with the nor-
mal options), immediately after the zipfile specification, or
between the file(s) and the -x option. The option and directory
may be concatenated without any white space between them, but
note that this may cause normal shell behavior to be suppressed.
In particular, ‘‘-d ~’’ (tilde) is expanded by Unix C shells
into the name of the user’s home directory, but ‘‘-d~’’ is
treated as a literal subdirectory ‘‘~’’ of the current direc-
Note that, in order to support obsolescent hardware, unzip’s usage
screen is limited to 22 or 23 lines and should therefore be considered
only a reminder of the basic unzip syntax rather than an exhaustive
list of all possible flags. The exhaustive list follows:
-Z zipinfo(1L) mode. If the first option on the command line is
-Z, the remaining options are taken to be zipinfo(1L) options.
See the appropriate manual page for a description of these
-A [OS/2, Unix DLL] print extended help for the DLL’s programming
-c extract files to stdout/screen (‘‘CRT’’). This option is simi-
lar to the -p option except that the name of each file is
printed as it is extracted, the -a option is allowed, and ASCII-
EBCDIC conversion is automatically performed if appropriate.
This option is not listed in the unzip usage screen.
-f freshen existing files, i.e., extract only those files that
already exist on disk and that are newer than the disk copies.
By default unzip queries before overwriting, but the -o option
may be used to suppress the queries. Note that under many oper-
ating systems, the TZ (timezone) environment variable must be
set correctly in order for -f and -u to work properly (under
Unix the variable is usually set automatically). The reasons
for this are somewhat subtle but have to do with the differences
between DOS-format file times (always local time) and Unix-for-
mat times (always in GMT/UTC) and the necessity to compare the
two. A typical TZ value is ‘‘PST8PDT’’ (US Pacific time with
automatic adjustment for Daylight Savings Time or ‘‘summer
-l list archive files (short format). The names, uncompressed file
sizes and modification dates and times of the specified files
are printed, along with totals for all files specified. If
UnZip was compiled with OS2_EAS defined, the -l option also
lists columns for the sizes of stored OS/2 extended attributes
(EAs) and OS/2 access control lists (ACLs). In addition, the
zipfile comment and individual file comments (if any) are dis-
played. If a file was archived from a single-case file system
(for example, the old MS-DOS FAT file system) and the -L option
was given, the filename is converted to lowercase and is pre-
fixed with a caret (^).
-p extract files to pipe (stdout). Nothing but the file data is
sent to stdout, and the files are always extracted in binary
format, just as they are stored (no conversions).
-t test archive files. This option extracts each specified file in
memory and compares the CRC (cyclic redundancy check, an
enhanced checksum) of the expanded file with the original file’s
stored CRC value.
-T [most OSes] set the timestamp on the archive(s) to that of the
newest file in each one. This corresponds to zip’s -go option
except that it can be used on wildcard zipfiles (e.g., ‘‘unzip
-T \*.zip’’) and is much faster.
-u update existing files and create new ones if needed. This
option performs the same function as the -f option, extracting
(with query) files that are newer than those with the same name
on disk, and in addition it extracts those files that do not
already exist on disk. See -f above for information on setting
the timezone properly.
-v be verbose or print diagnostic version info. This option has
evolved and now behaves as both an option and a modifier. As an
option it has two purposes: when a zipfile is specified with no
other options, -v lists archive files verbosely, adding to the
basic -l info the compression method, compressed size, compres-
sion ratio and 32-bit CRC. When no zipfile is specified (that
is, the complete command is simply ‘‘unzip -v’’), a diagnostic
screen is printed. In addition to the normal header with
release date and version, unzip lists the home Info-ZIP ftp site
and where to find a list of other ftp and non-ftp sites; the
target operating system for which it was compiled, as well as
(possibly) the hardware on which it was compiled, the compiler
and version used, and the compilation date; any special compila-
tion options that might affect the program’s operation (see also
DECRYPTION below); and any options stored in environment vari-
ables that might do the same (see ENVIRONMENT OPTIONS below).
As a modifier it works in conjunction with other options (e.g.,
-t) to produce more verbose or debugging output; this is not yet
fully implemented but will be in future releases.
-z display only the archive comment.
-a convert text files. Ordinarily all files are extracted exactly
as they are stored (as ‘‘binary’’ files). The -a option causes
files identified by zip as text files (those with the ‘t’ label
in zipinfo listings, rather than ‘b’) to be automatically
extracted as such, converting line endings, end-of-file charac-
ters and the character set itself as necessary. (For example,
Unix files use line feeds (LFs) for end-of-line (EOL) and have
no end-of-file (EOF) marker; Macintoshes use carriage returns
(CRs) for EOLs; and most PC operating systems use CR+LF for EOLs
and control-Z for EOF. In addition, IBM mainframes and the
Michigan Terminal System use EBCDIC rather than the more common
ASCII character set, and NT supports Unicode.) Note that zip’s
identification of text files is by no means perfect; some
‘‘text’’ files may actually be binary and vice versa. unzip
therefore prints ‘‘[text]’’ or ‘‘[binary]’’ as a visual check
for each file it extracts when using the -a option. The -aa
option forces all files to be extracted as text, regardless of
the supposed file type.
-b [general] treat all files as binary (no text conversions). This
is a shortcut for ---a.
-b [Tandem] force the creation files with filecode type 180 (’C’)
when extracting Zip entries marked as "text". (On Tandem, -a is
enabled by default, see above).
-b [VMS] auto-convert binary files (see -a above) to fixed-length,
512-byte record format. Doubling the option (-bb) forces all
files to be extracted in this format. When extracting to stan-
dard output (-c or -p option in effect), the default conversion
of text record delimiters is disabled for binary (-b) resp. all
-B [Unix only, and only if compiled with UNIXBACKUP defined] save a
backup copy of each overwritten file with a tilde appended
(e.g., the old copy of ‘‘foo’’ is renamed to ‘‘foo~’’). This is
similar to the default behavior of emacs(1) in many locations.
-C match filenames case-insensitively. unzip’s philosophy is ‘‘you
get what you ask for’’ (this is also responsible for the -L/-U
change; see the relevant options below). Because some file sys-
tems are fully case-sensitive (notably those under the Unix
operating system) and because both ZIP archives and unzip itself
are portable across platforms, unzip’s default behavior is to
match both wildcard and literal filenames case-sensitively.
That is, specifying ‘‘makefile’’ on the command line will only
match ‘‘makefile’’ in the archive, not ‘‘Makefile’’ or ‘‘MAKE-
FILE’’ (and similarly for wildcard specifications). Since this
does not correspond to the behavior of many other operating/file
systems (for example, OS/2 HPFS, which preserves mixed case but
is not sensitive to it), the -C option may be used to force all
filename matches to be case-insensitive. In the example above,
all three files would then match ‘‘makefile’’ (or ‘‘make*’’, or
similar). The -C option affects files in both the normal file
list and the excluded-file list (xlist).
-E [MacOS only] display contents of MacOS extra field during
-F [Acorn only] suppress removal of NFS filetype extension from
-F [non-Acorn systems supporting long filenames with embedded com-
mas, and only if compiled with ACORN_FTYPE_NFS defined] trans-
late filetype information from ACORN RISC OS extra field blocks
into a NFS filetype extension and append it to the names of the
extracted files. (When the stored filename appears to already
have an appended NFS filetype extension, it is replaced by the
info from the extra field.)
-i [MacOS only] ignore filenames stored in MacOS extra fields.
Instead, the most compatible filename stored in the generic part
of the entry’s header is used.
-j junk paths. The archive’s directory structure is not recreated;
all files are deposited in the extraction directory (by default,
the current one).
-J [BeOS only] junk file attributes. The file’s BeOS file
attributes are not restored, just the file’s data.
-J [MacOS only] ignore MacOS extra fields. All Macintosh specific
info is skipped. Data-fork and resource-fork are restored as
-L convert to lowercase any filename originating on an uppercase-
only operating system or file system. (This was unzip’s default
behavior in releases prior to 5.11; the new default behavior is
identical to the old behavior with the -U option, which is now
obsolete and will be removed in a future release.) Depending on
the archiver, files archived under single-case file systems
(VMS, old MS-DOS FAT, etc.) may be stored as all-uppercase
names; this can be ugly or inconvenient when extracting to a
case-preserving file system such as OS/2 HPFS or a case-sensi-
tive one such as under Unix. By default unzip lists and
extracts such filenames exactly as they’re stored (excepting
truncation, conversion of unsupported characters, etc.); this
option causes the names of all files from certain systems to be
converted to lowercase. The -LL option forces conversion of
every filename to lowercase, regardless of the originating file
-M pipe all output through an internal pager similar to the Unix
more(1) command. At the end of a screenful of output, unzip
pauses with a ‘‘--More--’’ prompt; the next screenful may be
viewed by pressing the Enter (Return) key or the space bar.
unzip can be terminated by pressing the ‘‘q’’ key and, on some
systems, the Enter/Return key. Unlike Unix more(1), there is no
forward-searching or editing capability. Also, unzip doesn’t
notice if long lines wrap at the edge of the screen, effectively
resulting in the printing of two or more lines and the likeli-
hood that some text will scroll off the top of the screen before
being viewed. On some systems the number of available lines on
the screen is not detected, in which case unzip assumes the
height is 24 lines.
-n never overwrite existing files. If a file already exists, skip
the extraction of that file without prompting. By default unzip
queries before extracting any file that already exists; the user
may choose to overwrite only the current file, overwrite all
files, skip extraction of the current file, skip extraction of
all existing files, or rename the current file.
-N [Amiga] extract file comments as Amiga filenotes. File comments
are created with the -c option of zip(1L), or with the -N option
of the Amiga port of zip(1L), which stores filenotes as com-
-o overwrite existing files without prompting. This is a dangerous
option, so use it with care. (It is often used with -f, how-
ever, and is the only way to overwrite directory EAs under
use password to decrypt encrypted zipfile entries (if any).
THIS IS INSECURE! Many multi-user operating systems provide
ways for any user to see the current command line of any other
user; even on stand-alone systems there is always the threat of
over-the-shoulder peeking. Storing the plaintext password as
part of a command line in an automated script is even worse.
Whenever possible, use the non-echoing, interactive prompt to
enter passwords. (And where security is truly important, use
strong encryption such as Pretty Good Privacy instead of the
relatively weak encryption provided by standard zipfile utili-
-q perform operations quietly (-qq = even quieter). Ordinarily
unzip prints the names of the files it’s extracting or testing,
the extraction methods, any file or zipfile comments that may be
stored in the archive, and possibly a summary when finished with
each archive. The -q[q] options suppress the printing of some
or all of these messages.
-s [OS/2, NT, MS-DOS] convert spaces in filenames to underscores.
Since all PC operating systems allow spaces in filenames, unzip
by default extracts filenames with spaces intact (e.g.,
‘‘EA DATA. SF’’). This can be awkward, however, since MS-DOS in
particular does not gracefully support spaces in filenames.
Conversion of spaces to underscores can eliminate the awkward-
ness in some cases.
-U (obsolete; to be removed in a future release) leave filenames
uppercase if created under MS-DOS, VMS, etc. See -L above.
-V retain (VMS) file version numbers. VMS files can be stored with
a version number, in the format file.ext;##. By default the
‘‘;##’’ version numbers are stripped, but this option allows
them to be retained. (On file systems that limit filenames to
particularly short lengths, the version numbers may be truncated
or stripped regardless of this option.)
-X [VMS, Unix, OS/2, NT] restore owner/protection info (UICs) under
VMS, or user and group info (UID/GID) under Unix, or access con-
trol lists (ACLs) under certain network-enabled versions of OS/2
(Warp Server with IBM LAN Server/Requester 3.0 to 5.0; Warp Con-
nect with IBM Peer 1.0), or security ACLs under Windows NT. In
most cases this will require special system privileges, and dou-
bling the option (-XX) under NT instructs unzip to use privi-
leges for extraction; but under Unix, for example, a user who
belongs to several groups can restore files owned by any of
those groups, as long as the user IDs match his or her own.
Note that ordinary file attributes are always restored--this
option applies only to optional, extra ownership info available
on some operating systems. [NT’s access control lists do not
appear to be especially compatible with OS/2’s, so no attempt is
made at cross-platform portability of access privileges. It is
not clear under what conditions this would ever be useful any-
-$ [MS-DOS, OS/2, NT] restore the volume label if the extraction
medium is removable (e.g., a diskette). Doubling the option
(-$$) allows fixed media (hard disks) to be labelled as well.
By default, volume labels are ignored.
[Acorn only] overrides the extension list supplied by Unzip$Ext
environment variable. During extraction, filename extensions
that match one of the items in this extension list are swapped
in front of the base name of the extracted file.
-: [all but Acorn, VM/CMS, MVS, Tandem] allows to extract archive
members into locations outside of the current ‘‘ extraction root
folder’’. For security reasons, unzip normally removes ‘‘parent
dir’’ path components (‘‘../’’) from the names of extracted
file. This safety feature (new for version 5.50) prevents unzip
from accidentally writing files to ‘‘sensitive’’ areas outside
the active extraction folder tree head. The -: option lets
unzip switch back to its previous, more liberal behaviour, to
allow exact extraction of (older) archives that used ‘‘../’’
components to create multiple directory trees at the level of
the current extraction folder. This option does not enable
writing explicitly to the root directory (‘‘/’’). To achieve
this, it is necessary to set the extraction target folder to
root (e.g. -d / ). However, when the -: option is specified, it
is still possible to implicitly write to the root directory by
specifiying enough ‘‘../’’ path components within the zip file.
Use this option with extreme caution.
unzip’s default behavior may be modified via options placed in an envi-
ronment variable. This can be done with any option, but it is probably
most useful with the -a, -L, -C, -q, -o, or -n modifiers: make unzip
auto-convert text files by default, make it convert filenames from
uppercase systems to lowercase, make it match names case-insensitively,
make it quieter, or make it always overwrite or never overwrite files
as it extracts them. For example, to make unzip act as quietly as pos-
sible, only reporting errors, one would use one of the following com-
Unix Bourne shell:
UNZIP=-qq; export UNZIP
Unix C shell:
setenv UNZIP -qq
OS/2 or MS-DOS:
VMS (quotes for lowercase):
define UNZIP_OPTS ""-qq""
Environment options are, in effect, considered to be just like any
other command-line options, except that they are effectively the first
options on the command line. To override an environment option, one
may use the ‘‘minus operator’’ to remove it. For instance, to override
one of the quiet-flags in the example above, use the command
unzip --q[other options] zipfile
The first hyphen is the normal switch character, and the second is a
minus sign, acting on the q option. Thus the effect here is to cancel
one quantum of quietness. To cancel both quiet flags, two (or more)
minuses may be used:
unzip -t--q zipfile
unzip ---qt zipfile
(the two are equivalent). This may seem awkward or confusing, but it
is reasonably intuitive: just ignore the first hyphen and go from
there. It is also consistent with the behavior of Unix nice(1).
As suggested by the examples above, the default variable names are
UNZIP_OPTS for VMS (where the symbol used to install unzip as a foreign
command would otherwise be confused with the environment variable), and
UNZIP for all other operating systems. For compatibility with zip(1L),
UNZIPOPT is also accepted (don’t ask). If both UNZIP and UNZIPOPT are
defined, however, UNZIP takes precedence. unzip’s diagnostic option
(-v with no zipfile name) can be used to check the values of all four
possible unzip and zipinfo environment variables.
The timezone variable (TZ) should be set according to the local time-
zone in order for the -f and -u to operate correctly. See the descrip-
tion of -f above for details. This variable may also be necessary in
order for timestamps on extracted files to be set correctly. Under
Windows 95/NT unzip should know the correct timezone even if TZ is
unset, assuming the timezone is correctly set in the Control Panel.
Encrypted archives are fully supported by Info-ZIP software, but due to
United States export restrictions, de-/encryption support might be dis-
abled in your compiled binary. However, since spring 2000, US export
restrictions have been liberated, and our source archives do now
include full crypt code. In case you need binary distributions with
crypt support enabled, see the file ‘‘WHERE’’ in any Info-ZIP source or
binary distribution for locations both inside and outside the US.
Some compiled versions of unzip may not support decryption. To check a
version for crypt support, either attempt to test or extract an
encrypted archive, or else check unzip’s diagnostic screen (see the -v
option above) for ‘‘[decryption]’’ as one of the special compilation
As noted above, the -P option may be used to supply a password on the
command line, but at a cost in security. The preferred decryption
method is simply to extract normally; if a zipfile member is encrypted,
unzip will prompt for the password without echoing what is typed.
unzip continues to use the same password as long as it appears to be
valid, by testing a 12-byte header on each file. The correct password
will always check out against the header, but there is a 1-in-256
chance that an incorrect password will as well. (This is a security
feature of the PKWARE zipfile format; it helps prevent brute-force
attacks that might otherwise gain a large speed advantage by testing
only the header.) In the case that an incorrect password is given but
it passes the header test anyway, either an incorrect CRC will be gen-
erated for the extracted data or else unzip will fail during the
extraction because the ‘‘decrypted’’ bytes do not constitute a valid
compressed data stream.
If the first password fails the header check on some file, unzip will
prompt for another password, and so on until all files are extracted.
If a password is not known, entering a null password (that is, just a
carriage return or ‘‘Enter’’) is taken as a signal to skip all further
prompting. Only unencrypted files in the archive(s) will thereafter be
extracted. (In fact, that’s not quite true; older versions of zip(1L)
and zipcloak(1L) allowed null passwords, so unzip checks each encrypted
file to see if the null password works. This may result in ‘‘false
positives’’ and extraction errors, as noted above.)
Archives encrypted with 8-bit passwords (for example, passwords with
accented European characters) may not be portable across systems and/or
other archivers. This problem stems from the use of multiple encoding
methods for such characters, including Latin-1 (ISO 8859-1) and OEM
code page 850. DOS PKZIP 2.04g uses the OEM code page; Windows PKZIP
2.50 uses Latin-1 (and is therefore incompatible with DOS PKZIP); Info-
ZIP uses the OEM code page on DOS, OS/2 and Win3.x ports but Latin-1
everywhere else; and Nico Mak’s WinZip 6.x does not allow 8-bit pass-
words at all. UnZip 5.3 (or newer) attempts to use the default charac-
ter set first (e.g., Latin-1), followed by the alternate one (e.g., OEM
code page) to test passwords. On EBCDIC systems, if both of these
fail, EBCDIC encoding will be tested as a last resort. (EBCDIC is not
tested on non-EBCDIC systems, because there are no known archivers that
encrypt using EBCDIC encoding.) ISO character encodings other than
Latin-1 are not supported.
To use unzip to extract all members of the archive letters.zip into the
current directory and subdirectories below it, creating any subdirecto-
ries as necessary:
To extract all members of letters.zip into the current directory only:
unzip -j letters
To test letters.zip, printing only a summary message indicating whether
the archive is OK or not:
unzip -tq letters
To test all zipfiles in the current directory, printing only the sum-
unzip -tq \*.zip
(The backslash before the asterisk is only required if the shell
expands wildcards, as in Unix; double quotes could have been used
instead, as in the source examples below.) To extract to standard out-
put all members of letters.zip whose names end in .tex, auto-converting
to the local end-of-line convention and piping the output into more(1):
unzip -ca letters \*.tex | more
To extract the binary file paper1.dvi to standard output and pipe it to
a printing program:
unzip -p articles paper1.dvi | dvips
To extract all FORTRAN and C source files--*.f, *.c, *.h, and Make-
file--into the /tmp directory:
unzip source.zip "*.[fch]" Makefile -d /tmp
(the double quotes are necessary only in Unix and only if globbing is
turned on). To extract all FORTRAN and C source files, regardless of
case (e.g., both *.c and *.C, and any makefile, Makefile, MAKEFILE or
unzip -C source.zip "*.[fch]" makefile -d /tmp
To extract any such files but convert any uppercase MS-DOS or VMS names
to lowercase and convert the line-endings of all of the files to the
local standard (without respect to any files that might be marked
unzip -aaCL source.zip "*.[fch]" makefile -d /tmp
To extract only newer versions of the files already in the current
directory, without querying (NOTE: be careful of unzipping in one
timezone a zipfile created in another--ZIP archives other than those
created by Zip 2.1 or later contain no timezone information, and a
‘‘newer’’ file from an eastern timezone may, in fact, be older):
unzip -fo sources
To extract newer versions of the files already in the current directory
and to create any files not already there (same caveat as previous
unzip -uo sources
To display a diagnostic screen showing which unzip and zipinfo options
are stored in environment variables, whether decryption support was
compiled in, the compiler with which unzip was compiled, etc.:
In the last five examples, assume that UNZIP or UNZIP_OPTS is set to
-q. To do a singly quiet listing:
unzip -l file.zip
To do a doubly quiet listing:
unzip -ql file.zip
(Note that the ‘‘.zip’’ is generally not necessary.) To do a standard
unzip --ql file.zip
unzip -l-q file.zip
unzip -l--q file.zip
(Extra minuses in options don’t hurt.)
The current maintainer, being a lazy sort, finds it very useful to
define a pair of aliases: tt for ‘‘unzip -tq’’ and ii for ‘‘unzip -Z’’
(or ‘‘zipinfo’’). One may then simply type ‘‘tt zipfile’’ to test an
archive, something that is worth making a habit of doing. With luck
unzip will report ‘‘No errors detected in compressed data of zip-
file.zip,’’ after which one may breathe a sigh of relief.
The maintainer also finds it useful to set the UNZIP environment vari-
able to ‘‘-aL’’ and is tempted to add ‘‘-C’’ as well. His ZIPINFO
variable is set to ‘‘-z’’.
The exit status (or error level) approximates the exit codes defined by
PKWARE and takes on the following values, except under VMS:
0 normal; no errors or warnings detected.
1 one or more warning errors were encountered, but process-
ing completed successfully anyway. This includes zip-
files where one or more files was skipped due to unsup-
ported compression method or encryption with an unknown
2 a generic error in the zipfile format was detected. Pro-
cessing may have completed successfully anyway; some bro-
ken zipfiles created by other archivers have simple work-
3 a severe error in the zipfile format was detected. Pro-
cessing probably failed immediately.
4 unzip was unable to allocate memory for one or more
buffers during program initialization.
5 unzip was unable to allocate memory or unable to obtain a
tty to read the decryption password(s).
6 unzip was unable to allocate memory during decompression
7 unzip was unable to allocate memory during in-memory
8 [currently not used]
9 the specified zipfiles were not found.
10 invalid options were specified on the command line.
11 no matching files were found.
50 the disk is (or was) full during extraction.
51 the end of the ZIP archive was encountered prematurely.
80 the user aborted unzip prematurely with control-C (or
81 testing or extraction of one or more files failed due to
unsupported compression methods or unsupported
82 no files were found due to bad decryption password(s).
(If even one file is successfully processed, however, the
exit status is 1.)
VMS interprets standard Unix (or PC) return values as other, scarier-
looking things, so unzip instead maps them into VMS-style status codes.
The current mapping is as follows: 1 (success) for normal exit,
0x7fff0001 for warning errors, and (0x7fff000? + 16*nor-
mal_unzip_exit_status) for all other errors, where the ‘?’ is 2 (error)
for unzip values 2, 9-11 and 80-82, and 4 (fatal error) for the remain-
ing ones (3-8, 50, 51). In addition, there is a compilation option to
expand upon this behavior: defining RETURN_CODES results in a human-
readable explanation of what the error status means.
Multi-part archives are not yet supported, except in conjunction with
zip. (All parts must be concatenated together in order, and then ‘‘zip
-F’’ must be performed on the concatenated archive in order to ‘‘fix’’
it.) This will definitely be corrected in the next major release.
Archives read from standard input are not yet supported, except with
funzip (and then only the first member of the archive can be
Archives encrypted with 8-bit passwords (e.g., passwords with accented
European characters) may not be portable across systems and/or other
archivers. See the discussion in DECRYPTION above.
unzip’s -M (‘‘more’’) option tries to take into account automatic wrap-
ping of long lines. However, the code may fail to detect the correct
wrapping locations. First, TAB characters (and similar control
sequences) are not taken into account, they are handled as ordinary
printable characters. Second, depending on the actual system / OS
port, unzip may not detect the true screen geometry but rather rely on
"commonly used" default dimensions. The correct handling of tabs would
require the implementation of a query for the actual tabulator setup on
the output console.
Dates, times and permissions of stored directories are not restored
except under Unix. (On Windows NT and successors, timestamps are now
[MS-DOS] When extracting or testing files from an archive on a defec-
tive floppy diskette, if the ‘‘Fail’’ option is chosen from DOS’s
‘‘Abort, Retry, Fail?’’ message, older versions of unzip may hang the
system, requiring a reboot. This problem appears to be fixed, but con-
trol-C (or control-Break) can still be used to terminate unzip.
Under DEC Ultrix, unzip would sometimes fail on long zipfiles (bad CRC,
not always reproducible). This was apparently due either to a hardware
bug (cache memory) or an operating system bug (improper handling of
page faults?). Since Ultrix has been abandoned in favor of Digital
Unix (OSF/1), this may not be an issue anymore.
[Unix] Unix special files such as FIFO buffers (named pipes), block
devices and character devices are not restored even if they are somehow
represented in the zipfile, nor are hard-linked files relinked. Basi-
cally the only file types restored by unzip are regular files, directo-
ries and symbolic (soft) links.
[OS/2] Extended attributes for existing directories are only updated if
the -o (‘‘overwrite all’’) option is given. This is a limitation of
the operating system; because directories only have a creation time
associated with them, unzip has no way to determine whether the stored
attributes are newer or older than those on disk. In practice this may
mean a two-pass approach is required: first unpack the archive nor-
mally (with or without freshening/updating existing files), then over-
write just the directory entries (e.g., ‘‘unzip -o foo */’’).
[VMS] When extracting to another directory, only the [.foo] syntax is
accepted for the -d option; the simple Unix foo syntax is silently
ignored (as is the less common VMS foo.dir syntax).
[VMS] When the file being extracted already exists, unzip’s query only
allows skipping, overwriting or renaming; there should additionally be
a choice for creating a new version of the file. In fact, the ‘‘over-
write’’ choice does create a new version; the old version is not over-
written or deleted.
funzip(1L), zip(1L), zipcloak(1L), zipgrep(1L), zipinfo(1L), zip-
The Info-ZIP home page is currently at
The primary Info-ZIP authors (current semi-active members of the Zip-
Bugs workgroup) are: Onno van der Linden (Zip); Christian Spieler
(UnZip maintenance coordination, VMS, MS-DOS, Win32, shared code, gen-
eral Zip and UnZip integration and optimization); Mike White (Windows
GUI, Windows DLLs); Kai Uwe Rommel (OS/2); Paul Kienitz (Amiga, Win32);
Chris Herborth (BeOS, QNX, Atari); Jonathan Hudson (SMS/QDOS); Sergio
Monesi (Acorn RISC OS); Harald Denker (Atari, MVS); John Bush (Solaris,
Amiga); Hunter Goatley (VMS); Steve Salisbury (Win32); Steve Miller
(Windows CE GUI), Johnny Lee (MS-DOS, Win32); and Dave Smith (Tandem
The following people were former members of the Info-ZIP development
group and provided major contributions to key parts of the current
code: Greg ‘‘Cave Newt’’ Roelofs (UnZip, unshrink decompression); Jean-
loup Gailly (deflate compression); Mark Adler (inflate decompression,
The author of the original unzip code upon which Info-ZIP’s was based
is Samuel H. Smith; Carl Mascott did the first Unix port; and David P.
Kirschbaum organized and led Info-ZIP in its early days with Keith
Petersen hosting the original mailing list at WSMR-SimTel20. The full
list of contributors to UnZip has grown quite large; please refer to
the CONTRIBS file in the UnZip source distribution for a relatively
v1.2 15 Mar 89 Samuel H. Smith
v2.0 9 Sep 89 Samuel H. Smith
v2.x fall 1989 many Usenet contributors
v3.0 1 May 90 Info-ZIP (DPK, consolidator)
v3.1 15 Aug 90 Info-ZIP (DPK, consolidator)
v4.0 1 Dec 90 Info-ZIP (GRR, maintainer)
v4.1 12 May 91 Info-ZIP
v4.2 20 Mar 92 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.0 21 Aug 92 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.01 15 Jan 93 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.1 7 Feb 94 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.11 2 Aug 94 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.12 28 Aug 94 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.2 30 Apr 96 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.3 22 Apr 97 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.31 31 May 97 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.32 3 Nov 97 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, GRR)
v5.4 28 Nov 98 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, SPC)
v5.41 16 Apr 00 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, SPC)
v5.42 14 Jan 01 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, SPC)
v5.5 17 Feb 02 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, SPC)
v5.51 22 May 04 Info-ZIP (Zip-Bugs subgroup, SPC)
Info-ZIP 22 May 2004 (v5.51) UNZIP(1L)
Man(1) output converted with