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, 13 Apr 2011 CPOL
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How to include zip/unzip functionality in your .NET applications.

If you want to include zip/unzip functionality in your .NET applications, a very good approach would be using DotNetZip ( Recently, I needed this functionality in an installer application. I know I could use the freely available zip applications such as 7-zip on the development site to zip some files, but when it came to unzipping on the client site, I couldn’t assume that they have that third party application on their computer to unzip the files.

.NET comes with two classes which, at first, may seem suitable for zip/unzipping, but on a closer look, they turn out to be not what you may want. The System.IO.Compression class is intended to be used for one file, not a collection of files, and it does not exactly create Zip files. System.IO.Packaging is also not suitable for typical zip/unzipping. It is intended for working with Open Packages. It adds some XML files to the package in addition to the files you specify.

DotNetZip is an Open-Source project that delivers the zip/unzip functionality in a very easy way to use. You add the DLL ( to your project and then you can zip files within a directory, just like this:

Dim zipFileName As String = “”

Dim fileNames As String() = Directory.GetFiles(txtStorageDirectory.Text)

Using zip As Ionic.Zip.ZipFile = New Ionic.Zip.ZipFile
    For Each file In fileNames
End Using


This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Morris Bahrami
Australia Australia
I have over 17 years of experience in software development in a variety of fields. For last 7 years the emphasis has been mostly on .NET technology (C# and VB.NET) which includes WPF, WCF and ASP.NET AJAX. Also have SQL Server experience including SSIS and SSRS. My blog ( has a collection of tips and general info for Microsoft Developers.

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Comments and Discussions

GeneralMy vote of 3 Pin
LakeMichigan20-Mar-14 7:55
memberLakeMichigan20-Mar-14 7:55 
Question Pin
SureshKuParser Error4-Oct-13 6:20
memberSureshKuParser Error4-Oct-13 6:20 
AnswerRe: Pin
Morris Bahrami4-Oct-13 15:02
memberMorris Bahrami4-Oct-13 15:02 
QuestionZip count Pin
Pramod Kamath21-Sep-13 3:24
memberPramod Kamath21-Sep-13 3:24 
AnswerRe: Zip count Pin
Morris Bahrami22-Sep-13 21:08
memberMorris Bahrami22-Sep-13 21:08 
QuestionThe file 'c:\DotNetZip\Zip\ZipFile.cs' does not exist. Pin
BobSunndb13-Dec-11 8:38
memberBobSunndb13-Dec-11 8:38 
AnswerRe: The file 'c:\DotNetZip\Zip\ZipFile.cs' does not exist. Pin
Morris Bahrami13-Dec-11 13:02
memberMorris Bahrami13-Dec-11 13:02 
GeneralMy vote of 5 Pin
El-ahrairah23-May-11 9:46
memberEl-ahrairah23-May-11 9:46 

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