Disabling Windows built-in zip file support on XP and Vista

In this post, I discussed a problem with the built-in ZIP file support included with Windows Explorer. A comment from that post mentioned simply disabling this native support and thus I thought it might be a good idea to mention how go about doing just that. Under Windows XP you can use the following command line from a Command Prompt:

regsvr32 /u %windir%\system32\zipfldr.dll

Of course, you can always re-register support by executing the above command without the “/u”. While that may work under XP it fails under Windows Vista, go figure. If you run regedit and open up HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT there is a long list of file extensions with information about the various associations and such used by Windows. If you locate “.zip” you can see that the default value is “CompressedFolder” from there you can search for a CLSID that has the same default value and you’ll find:


WARNING: The following discusses steps for editing your Windows Registry. If something should go wrong you’re on your own. You’ve been warned!

First, export the above key before touching it at all so you have a backup. Next, if you delete this key you will effectively disable the built-in ZIP file support for Windows Explorer.

3 thoughts on “Disabling Windows built-in zip file support on XP and Vista

  1. That also fixes the problem of the Run dialog (Windows+R) not showing zip files in the autocompletion list. :p

  2. Thanks Steve.
    I’ve always disliked ZipFolders … and now they’re gone 🙂

  3. Many thanks! Since I use winrar those zip folders under explorer looks so useless.. and thanks to you they’re gone now!

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