How to Use 7zip in Ubuntu Linux Without Knowing Commands

by Lonnie Lee Best
Lonnie Lee Best

As of version 4.43 beta, 7-Zip doesn't yet provide a graphical user interface (GUI) for Linux. Ubuntu's Archive Manager (file-roller) provides some help, but it doesn't support multi-volume archives. If you haven't yet installed 7-zip, go here.

Below, I've created a simple form that you can fill out to generate 7z commands. You can copy these commands directly into your terminal at the command prompt. Unfortunately, I only had time to support the features I commonly use, which is certainly a limited set of what you can do with 7-Zip. However, I hope you'll find this to be a useful bookmark.

Simple 7-Zip Command Generator

Where is the folder or file you want to archive?

(example: /home/user/Desktop/FolderName)

In which folder, do you want the output file(s) to be placed?

(example: /home/user/Desktop)

What would you like to name the output file(s)?

(example: fileName)

What level of compression do you want?

Would you like the output to be divided into multiple volumes? If so, indicate the "maximum size per file" below:

Click the button above to generate your command below.

Now you can create your archive by simply pasting the command (that you generated above) into a terminal and pressing [enter]. From Ubuntu's menu go to: Applications | Accessories | Terminal (right click in your terminal and click "paste" from the context menu).

NOTE: If you chose to create multiple volumes, don't mess with any of the files outputed until the entire operation is complete. 7-Zip can change any volumes (including first volumes) at the end of archiving.

NOTE 2: If (during compression) you decide that it is taking too long, be sure to read this entire note. You can stop the current job by holding down the "CTRL" button and pressing "c" (no quotes) in the terminal. However, be sure to delete the file that 7-zip partially generated. It will be a corrupted file and 7-zip won't automatically delete it. Furthermore, it won't allow you to overwrite it either. So if you were to simply leave it there, and then try to create another archive with the exact same name and location (but with a faster compression level perhaps), 7-zip will give you an error: "is not supported archive". This error occurs because, instead of overwriting the previous attempt, 7-zip evaluates that existing file and can't identify it as a healthy archive to which files can be added.


Extracting is pretty simple. From the command line, navigate to the folder where the .7z file(s) are located (type "cd /path/to/folder" for example without quotes). Then, type:

7z x FileName.7z

If your archive is split into multiple volumes, specify the lowest numbered volume.

7z x FileName.7z.001

If you want to extract to another location simply add "-o" follow by that location to the end of the command:

7z x FileName.7z -o/home/user/Desktop/foldername

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About the Author

Lonnie Best has been using the internet since 1993, and has been making web pages since 1995. visit:

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