How to ZIP a File on Mac | Ultimate Guide 2023

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Published on
December 4, 2020
Updated on
November 17, 2023

What is a ZIP File?

A ZIP file is a compressed file, it is also referred to as an Archive file. This ZIP file is mainly used to compress or shrink a large file to a smaller volume. The use of ZIP files can also allow the user to consolidate and compress multiple files to be able to transfer the file via mail or portable storage drives. This article guides you on how to create a ZIP file on your MacBook.

How to Create a ZIP file on a Mac?

Creating a ZIP file on your MacBook is very simple. Follow the steps mentioned below to compress the file successfully.

  1. How to Compress a Single ZIP file
  2. Compress multiple ZIP files
  3. Shrink multiple files with specified file name
  4. ZIP a File on Mac using ZIP Utility
  5. How to Open a ZIP file

How to Compress a Single ZIP File?

  • Right-click on any file that you wish to compress
  • Choose Compress from the pop-up
  • This will create a compressed ZIP file with the original file name.

How to ZIP files on a Mac?

  • Hold the Command key and select all the files that you wish to ZIP
  • Right-click on the highlighted files and choose Compress from the pop-up menu
  • By doing so, all the files will be shrunk to a single file with the name

How to Shrink Multiple Files with the Specified File Name?

Sometimes, having a file named archive might confuse you while accessing or identifying the ZIP file. To avoid this confusion, here is what you can do.

Hold the Command key and select all the files to be compressed on your MacBook
Right-click on the files and choose New Folder with Selection (X items) here. X indicates the number of files you have selected.
Now give the folder a suitable name of your choice and hit Enter to create the new folder
Finally, right-click on the newly created folder and select Compress from the pop-up

This way, you can successfully create a ZIP folder of all the files with the name of your choice.
But having more number of files within a single folder can also be a problem because you cannot compress files or folders that are more than 4 GB in size.

ZIP a File/folder on Mac using ZIP Utility

Is there an easier way to compress large files or folders?

Yes, with the Remo ZIP File on your Mac, there is no limitation to the number of files that can be compressed. What’s more impressive is you also get to split large files and specify the size of each ZIP file.

Free Download For Mac

How to Create Password-Protected ZIP Files in Mac Terminal

The above-mentioned steps will now allow you to create files that are encrypted. Suppose you have a set of confidential files, you can create a ZIP file and protect the files with a password using Terminal. Here is how you can do it.

  • Type Terminal in the search box, and click on the first result
  • In the Terminal window, type cd desktop. (Here Desktop is the destination where you are creating the new ZIP file or folder) you can choose where you want to save the file by specifying the exact path
  • The newly created ZIP file will be stored in the Users folder, if you don't specify any destination
  • Next, type zip -e name.zipfilename.fileextension (Note: Here, the name is the name that you want to give the new ZIP file and filename. fileextension is the name of the file or folder you want to compress). Next, hit Enter
  • You will be asked to provide the desired password for the file, give a password, and hit enter. Next, you need to verify the password by re-typing the password. Once done, press enter.
  • Finally, your password-protected ZIP file will be created and saved in the specified destination folder With the above steps, you will be able to create a ZIP file that is secure or password-protected.

However, there are limitations to manual methods. Also, compressing a file by Terminal command could be very tricky and time-consuming. You might also corrupt your precious files if not done the right way.

Tips to Open or uncompress ZIP files using Mac's Archive Utility

Open / Click on your zip file on Mac.
The file automatically opens, and the archive utility decompresses the file into the same folder as your zipped file. For instance, if you had the zip file on your desktop, then the uncompressed file will also be on the desktop.

Note: If your ZIP file still exceeds the limit while sending an email, read this article on how to create a Spanned Zip file for easy sharing of large files.


ZIP files are one of the best ways to archive files that can save a lot of space on the drive. The steps mentioned above can help you to create a ZIP file on your Mac. If you have any doubts or questions related to the topic, please mention them in the comment section below.

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