StuffIt Deluxe 7.5
There really aren't a lot of choices in compression programs. WinZip
continues to be the one that most people think of first (indeed, many
Windows users have probably never even heard of PKWare these days). But
StuffIt 7.5 sports an impressive array of functionality and a low price
that makes it worth considering when you're looking for a compression
Of course, StuffIt supports all the common compression formats, including
Zip and their own Sit archives (which will be more familiar to Mac users;
this is a cross-platform program), as well as lesser-used (on Windows,
at least) formats such as tar, bzip, and gzip. But it's the extra touches
that make the program shine. For example, you can search for files in
archives with an interface very similar to Windows own Search window;
specify a file name (with wildcards, if necessary) and a location, and
StuffIt will look inside all of the archives to see what it can find.
There are also easy shortcuts for operations such as compressing and mailing
in a single operation, as well as drag-and-drop functions. Even more impressive
from the automation standpoint is the included StuffIt Express, which
lets you script whole sequences of actions such as locating files, compressing
them, and FTPing the result to another computer. Couple that with Windows
task scheduler and you can automate a lot of backup operations.
Another included utility makes self-extracting archives with nice touches
such as custom icons and window titles, as well as the ability to send
an e-mail message after the files have been extracted. Within the StuffIt
application, a Windows Explorer interface makes it easy to find files
to work with, although I found this a bit slow on a large drive with a
deeply-nested file structure. The program also integrates with the regular
Explorer shortcut menus if you prefer to work that way.
You can purchase the program directly from Aladdin's web site, where
you can also download a trial version of the program.
[This review originally appeared in developer central 1.9.editor]
Mike Gunderloy, MCSE, MCSD, MCDBA, is a former MCP columnist and the author of numerous development books.