What is RAR? What Opens a RAR? File Format List from WhatIs.com

File Extension

RAR File Format

WinRAR Compressed Archive

RAR file format icon

RAR is a compressed archive file format used by the WinRAR archival software. A RAR archive may contain one or more files and archives may span multiple files. Multiple files are often used to break up the archive for storage on media smaller than the archive. 

RAR features stronger compression than a zip file and though it is a proprietary format it is used in other compression software, like 7-zip, for its 7Z files. Usually, WINRAR archives have a RAR extension; however, spanned archives often have a .R00-.R99 extension.

RAR comes from the name of its developer, Eugene Roshal, for Roshal’s ARchive.  

MIME type: application/rar, application/x-rar-compressed


Learn more about .RAR files:

Visit the RARlab Web page.

Search for answers to .RAR-related questions at ITKnowledgeExchange.com.

This was last updated in August 2010
Editorial Director Margaret Rouse

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