Key Takeaways

  • If your Windows PC can’t open a corrupted ZIP file, first try redownloading the file. Make sure the download doesn’t get interrupted.
  • You can repair corrupted ZIP files using WinZip and its command-line add-on.
  • If WinZip can’t fix the corrupted ZIP file, you can try WinRAR. Just open WinRAR, select the file, and click the “Repair” button.

Are you having trouble opening a ZIP file on your Windows PC? Possibly, the file is corrupted. The good news is that there are a couple of ways to repair a corrupted ZIP file on Windows and view its content.

Download the ZIP File Again

When you try to open a corrupted ZIP file, Windows will display an error message like “Compressed (zipped) Folders Error: Windows cannot open the folder. The Compressed Folder is invalid.”

Corrupt ZIP file prompt on Windows.

In this case, your first step should be to re-download the ZIP file. This can be helpful if the file was corrupted during download due to interruptions like a system crash, BSOD or pausing/resuming the download process multiple times. This time, ensure the download completes without any disruptions.

If you’ve received the ZIP file through email, ask the sender to send the file again. Make sure to request that they create a new ZIP file from scratch with the same files instead of sending the same potentially corrupted file again.

Use WinZip Command-Line Utility to Repair the ZIP File

WinZip is a popular archive extraction tool for Windows. It also has a command-line utility that you can use to repair corrupted files. To begin with, visit the WinZip official website and download its free version.

Try it free option to download WinZip for free.

Once the download is complete, install it like you install any other software on your computer.

WinZip Installation window.

After the installation is complete, visit the WinZip Command-Line’s official website and download either a 32-bit or 64-bit file, depending on your system type.

Command Line Versions of WinZip

Install the downloaded file on your computer.

Installation window of WinZip command line utility.

Right-click the corrupted ZIP file and choose “Copy As Path.”

Copy as path option in the context menu.

Open the Start menu, type “Command Prompt” in the search bar, and hit Enter.

Typing Command Prompt in Start Menu.

In the Command Prompt window, type cd, paste the copied path, and hit Enter. Make sure to remove the corrupted file name from the pasted path. For instance, if the copied path is “C:UsersUsernameDesktopABC.zip,” where “ABC.zip” is the corrupted ZIP file name, the command will look like:

cd"C:UsersUsernameDesktop"
Path of the corrupted file.

Type the following command and hit Enter. Make sure to replace “ABC.zip” with the actual filename of your corrupted ZIP:

"C:Program FilesWinZipwzzip" -yf ABC.zip
Command to repair ZIP file in Command Prompt.

Press any key from your keyboard to continue.

Press any key to continue message in Command Prompt.

WinZip will start repairing the ZIP file. Once the repair process is complete, WinZip will create a separate, repaired ZIP file in the same location as the corrupted one.

Fixed folder created by WinZip.

Try opening this new file. If the repaired file still doesn’t open, you can use WinRAR to repair the corrupted ZIP file.

Use WinRAR to Repair the ZIP File

WinRAR is another popular tool for managing archive files on Windows. It offers a built-in repair feature that can help you fix corrupted files. To use it, first, download and install WinRAR on your computer.

Download WinRAR button to download Windows version of WinRAR.

Open WinRAR, and use the “Up One Level” arrow to navigate to the location where the corrupted ZIP is located.

One Up Arror in WinRAR.

Select the corrupted ZIP file and click “Repair.”

Repair option in WinRAR.

Select the location where you want to save the repaired ZIP file, choose the “Treat the Corrupt Archive as ZIP” option, and click “OK.”

Treat the corrupt file as ZIP option in WinRAR.

The repair process may take some time, depending on the file size and complexity. Once the repair is finished, you should be able to unzip the file without any issues.


Repairing the corrupt ZIP file on your computer was a breeze, wasn’t it? Now that it’s fixed, you can easily share it with others. Even better, you can password-protect the file to keep prying eyes out.