How to Open, Extract RAR files on Windows & Mac?

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Extracting RAR files can be the easiest task if you are regular user of .rar or .zip formats. If you are newly exploring the file formats such as RAR or facing any difficulties in extracting RAR files, this article explains the simplest ways to open RAR files on both Windows and Mac computers. With the help of the methods described, you will be able to learn how to extract large files and multiple RAR files as well.

RAR and Zip file formats are the most popular compressed file formats used while transferring files from one drive to another or via email as it reduces the storage space. Although RAR and Zip files uses compression algorithm to minimize the file size, RAR comes with an added advantage. With RAR you can divide a single file in to multiple pieces and send the file. You can extract back the multiple files as well without any hassle.

The Simplest Way to Open, Extract RAR Files


There are several applications used on Windows to open RAR files. The default application used to extract RAR file is WinRAR, precisely made for RAR file format. However, it is not the free app but a trialware. You can make use of the WinRAR app to easily create RAR file. To extract RAR file, you can try the free and open source 7Zip.

How to Open RAR files on Windows?

Methods mentioned below can be used to open RAR Files in the Following Windows Versions: Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista and older versions.

You can extract multiple RAR files using WinRAR or 7-zip application following the same procedure as extracting/opening RAR files.

Open RAR file with WinRAR

Follow the steps to open RAR file in WinRAR:

  1. Double-click on the .rar file >> Select the files or folders you want to extract/open.
  2. Now, click on the Extract To icon at the top of the WinRAR window and choose a destination folder where you want to save the contents of the extracted RAR file >> OK


  1. Right-click on the RAR file >> Choose Open with WinRAR
  2. Double-click on the file you want to open >> WinRAR will launch automatically.
  3. Open WinRAR >> Select the file/folder from the WinRAR

Note:  If you are encountering the checksum error while opening the RAR file, it is recommended to fix the error immediately.  Click on the link to know how to fix WinRAR checksum error using 3 efficient ways.

Extract or Open RAR file using 7-Zip

If you are looking for any Free open source application to unRAR files, 7-zip is the application you are looking for. At first, you need to download the 7-zip application from the official website. When the download completes, launch the application and click on finish button.

Now to extract RAR files, follow the steps given below

  1. Select the file you want to extract from the RAR archive
  2. Right click on the file>> it displays multiple options like Open archive, Extract files, Extract here, Test archive, Add to archive and Compress and email.
  3. Select Extract here. You will be now taken to another window that displays the time needed to extract all the files from the archive.

Now you can view the extracted files in the same directory it was opened.


  1. Right-click the RAR file you want to open >> Select 7zip from the options listed
  2. Now, select Open archive >> 7zip file manager opens
  3. Click on Extract >> Choose the location you want>> OK

Once you click on OK, you will be directed to next window that displays the remaining time to extract all the files RAR archives.

How to Open RAR files on Mac?

To extract RAR files on macOS, you can make use of the free open source applications known as Unarchiver. Unlike Windows Mac doesn’t have multiple options to extract RAR files. However, Unarchiver supports extraction of multiple files from RAR archives.

  1. Download and install the application on your Mac computer.
  2. right-click the RAR file in Finder >> Choose The Unarchiver from the Open with
  3. Enter the password if the RAR has encryption.
  4. Now the app extracts the files to a new folder in the same directory

Note: If you want to know more about extracting an encrypted or password protected RAR file check this information.

How Do I Extract Large RAR Files?

The maximum limit of RAR file could be 2^63 bytes in size and 7-zip archive limit is 2^64 bytes. Therefore, you can use 7-zip archive to extract large RAR files without any trouble. What if your RAR archive is corrupt? How would you extract RAR files? Well, do not worry, with SFWare Repair RAR file tool, you can fix corruption and extract RAR files with ease.

When you try extracting large RAR files, there would be chances of RAR file corruption as it exceeds the file size limit. In such situations, you can make use of SFWare RAR file Repair software that not only helps you repair the RAR file but help in extracting large size RAR files without causing any damage to files. SFWare is the most recommended tool to repair the corrupt RAR files. the tool not only repairs but also extract corruption free RAR files.

Free Download for Windows

Steps to Repair and Extract Corrupt RAR File

To Repair corrupt RAR file, download and install SFWare Repair RAR file on your computer and launch the application.

  • Select RAR file that you want to repair and click on Repair
  • Now, Quick repairing and recovering/extracting process will take place
  • Fixed Files can be stored on any external storage devices


With all the above-mentioned methods, you can easily open/extract RAR files without any hassle. It is always recommended to keep multiple backups of important files to avoid any data loss scenarios. Avoid interruptions while downloading large RAR files to evade RAR file corruption. If you encounter any trouble extracting file due to corruption or damage on the file, you can make use of SFWare RAR file Repair tool.

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