Download of the day: PeaZip

Our daily pick of the best free Windows software – a security-focused file archiving app to keep your data safe

PeaZip is one of the best free tools around for unpacking, managing and creating compressed file archives. It can extract archives in over 150 formats, including RAR, and compress to 7Z, ARC, BZ2, GZ, PAQ, PEA, SFX, TAR, UPX, WIM, XZ, and ZIP.

Some free file archiving tools are designed to be as small as possible, but PeaZip is focused on security, with a whole toolkit to keep your important data safe. It's fully functional – not just a taster of a premium paid-for product – and completely free to use on as many devices as you like.

Why you need it

Compressed file archives are great for sharing files – whether it's by email, FTP, P2P or cloud storage – enabling you to package several documents together and minimize their overall size. Another very useful factor is security, and this is where PeaZip outshines its rivals.

Key features

Excellent format support

Two-factor authentication

Secure file shredder

Drag-and-drop interface

File viewer and organizer

PeaZip is capable of reading and creating encrypted file archives using two-factor authentication, which requires both a password and a randomly generated key file to unlock. This makes the archives much harder to crack using brute force or dictionary-based attacks.

PeaZip includes its own built-in password manager, which keeps your credentials encrypted until a master password is entered, and a secure file shredder to permanently erase any data you no longer need.

If all that isn't enough to tempt you, there's also a comprehensive set of non-security features.

Download PeaZip free

These include a file organizer with built-in image editor, options for splitting and joining archives, the ability to find duplicate files, and a tool for optimizing image compression. If you share file archives regularly, PeaZip is essential.