How to Fix ZIP Function Not Working in Windows 11

When essential functions like the ZIP feature fail in Windows 11, it disrupts productivity and can signal underlying system issues. Identifying the root cause is crucial; it could be due to recent software changes, corrupted files, or disk errors.

Fortunately, Windows provides various troubleshooting methods to address these issues effectively. In this guide, we’ll explore step-by-step solutions to fix the ZIP function, ensuring seamless file compression and extraction on your system.

Why Zip Function Not Working in Windows 11?

The ZIP function may cease to work in Windows 11 due to various reasons, including:

File Association Errors: Incorrect file associations or conflicts with third-party compression software can prevent Windows from properly handling ZIP files.

Corrupted System Files: Damage to system files or settings related to ZIP functionality can lead to errors when attempting to compress or extract ZIP archives.

Permissions Issues: Insufficient permissions or restrictions on specific folders may prevent Windows from performing ZIP operations.

Software Conflicts: Third-party antivirus programs or security software may interfere with Windows’ ability to handle ZIP files, leading to functionality issues.

Fix ZIP Function Not Working in Windows 11

Now that you know the reasons for the issue. Let’s move on to the fixes.

1. Reset File Associations

Incorrect file associations can disrupt the ZIP function in Windows 11. Resetting file associations for ZIP files ensures that they are properly handled by the default Windows compression utility.

  1. Right-click on a ZIP file and select “Open with > Choose another app.”
  2. In the “How do you want to open this file?” dialog, select “More apps” and scroll down to find “Windows Explorer.”
  3. Check the box next to “Always use this app to open .zip files.”
  4. Click “OK” to confirm the changes. Windows will now use the default compression utility to handle ZIP files.

2. Run System File Checker (SFC) Scan

Corrupted system files can interfere with various Windows functions, including ZIP operations. Running a System File Checker (SFC) scan can help identify and repair any corrupted system files that may be affecting the ZIP function.

  1. Open Command Prompt as an administrator by right-clicking on the Start button and selecting it.
  2. Type the following command and press Enter: sfc /scannow
  3. Allow the SFC scan to complete. If any corrupted files are found, follow the on-screen instructions to repair them.
  4. After the scan is complete, restart your computer and check if the ZIP function is working correctly.

3. Check Folder Permissions

Insufficient permissions on specific folders can prevent Windows from performing ZIP operations. Ensuring that you have the necessary permissions to access and modify files in the target folders can resolve ZIP function issues.

  1. Navigate to the folder where you are encountering ZIP function problems.
  2. Right-click on the folder and select “Properties.”
  3. Go to the “Security” tab and click on “Edit” to modify permissions.
  4. Ensure that your user account has “Full control” permissions for the folder.
  5. Click “Apply” and then “OK” to save the changes.
  6. Attempt to perform ZIP operations again and check if the issue persists.

4. Temporarily Disable Antivirus Software

Third-party antivirus programs or security software may conflict with Windows’ built-in ZIP functionality, leading to errors or failures when attempting to compress or extract ZIP files. Temporarily disabling antivirus software can help determine if it is causing the ZIP function issue.

  1. Locate the antivirus software icon in the system tray or taskbar.
  2. Right-click on the icon and select an option to disable or pause the antivirus protection temporarily.
  3. Confirm the action if prompted, and ensure that the antivirus software is fully disabled.
  4. Attempt to perform ZIP operations again and check if the issue is resolved.
  5. Once testing is complete, re-enable the antivirus software to ensure ongoing protection.

5. Repair or Reinstall Windows Explorer

Windows Explorer, the file management application in Windows 11, is responsible for handling ZIP files. If Windows Explorer encounters issues, it can affect the ZIP function’s performance. Repairing or reinstalling Windows Explorer can help resolve underlying issues and restore ZIP functionality.

  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. In the Task Manager window, go to the File menu and select Run new task.
  3. Type powershell and check the box for Create this task with administrative privileges.
  4. Click OK to open PowerShell with administrative privileges.
  5. In the PowerShell window, type the following command and press Enter:
   Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register "$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml"}
  1. Wait for the command to execute and for Windows to reinstall Windows Explorer components.
  2. Once the process is complete, restart your computer.
  3. After restarting, attempt to use the ZIP function again to see if the issue has been resolved.

6. Check Disk for Errors

Disk errors or bad sectors on your storage drive can lead to data corruption or functionality issues, including problems with the ZIP function. Running a disk check can help identify and repair any errors on your disk, potentially resolving the ZIP function not working in Windows 11.

  1. Press Windows Key + X and select Windows Terminal (Admin) or Command Prompt (Admin) from the menu. (If Windows Terminal is not available, Command Prompt can be used.)
  2. In the Windows Terminal or Command Prompt window, type the following command and press Enter:
   chkdsk C: /f /r

Replace “C:” with the drive letter of the disk where Windows is installed, if different.

  1. You will see a message stating that the disk is in use and asking if you would like to schedule the disk check for the next time your system restarts. Type Y and press Enter.
  2. Restart your computer to initiate the disk check process. Be patient as this process may take some time, depending on the size and condition of your disk.
  3. Once the disk check is complete, Windows will start normally. Check if the ZIP function is now working correctly.

Note: If you are unable to access Windows or encounter issues during startup after scheduling the disk check, boot into the Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE) and run the disk check from there. You can access WinRE by restarting your computer and repeatedly pressing a specific key (often F8 or F11) during startup to enter the boot menu. From there, choose the option to troubleshoot and access advanced options, where you’ll find the option to run a disk check.

7. Reset Windows Update Components:

Issues with Windows Update components can sometimes interfere with system functions, including the ZIP function. Resetting the Windows Update components can help resolve underlying issues and ensure that Windows Update operates correctly, potentially fixing the ZIP function in Windows 11.

  1. Press Windows Key + X and select Windows Terminal (Admin) or Command Prompt (Admin) from the menu. (If Windows Terminal is not available, Command Prompt can be used.)
  2. In the Windows Terminal or Command Prompt window, type the following commands one by one and press Enter after each:
   net stop wuauserv
   net stop cryptSvc
   net stop bits
   net stop msiserver
  1. Next, type the following commands to rename the SoftwareDistribution and Catroot2 folders. These folders store Windows Update files and can sometimes become corrupted.
   ren C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
   ren C:\Windows\System32\catroot2 Catroot2.old

Note: If your Windows installation is on a different drive (e.g., D:), replace “C:” with the appropriate drive letter.

  1. After renaming the folders, type the following commands to restart the Windows Update services:
   net start wuauserv
   net start cryptSvc
   net start bits
   net start msiserver
  1. Close the Windows Terminal or Command Prompt window.
  2. Restart your computer to apply the changes.
  3. After restarting, try using the ZIP function again to see if the issue has been resolved.

8. Perform System File Checker (SFC) and Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) Scans

System files essential for Windows operation may become corrupted, causing various issues, including problems with the ZIP function. Running System File Checker (SFC) and Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) scans can help detect and repair corrupted system files, potentially resolving the ZIP function not working in Windows 11.

  1. Press Windows Key + X and select Windows Terminal (Admin) or Command Prompt (Admin) from the menu. (If Windows Terminal is not available, Command Prompt can be used.)
  2. In the Windows Terminal or Command Prompt window, type the following command and press Enter to run the System File Checker (SFC) scan:
   sfc /scannow

This command will scan for and repair any corrupted system files.

  1. Wait for the scan to complete. It may take some time, so please be patient.
  2. After the SFC scan finishes, type the following command and press Enter to run the Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) scan:
   DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

DISM will check for component store corruption and automatically attempt to fix any issues found.

  1. Once the DISM scan is complete, restart your computer to apply the repairs.
  2. After restarting, check if the ZIP function is now working correctly. If not, proceed to the next troubleshooting step.

9. Check and Repair Disk Errors

Disk errors can disrupt system operations and lead to various issues, including problems with the ZIP function. Checking for and repairing disk errors can help ensure the integrity of your storage drive and potentially resolve the ZIP function not working in Windows 11.

  1. Press Windows Key + E to open File Explorer.
  2. Right-click on the drive where Windows is installed (usually the C: drive) and select Properties from the context menu.
  3. In the Properties window, go to the Tools tab.
  4. Under the Error checking section, click on the Check button. If prompted, select Scan drive.
  5. Windows will begin scanning the drive for errors. This process may take some time, depending on the size and condition of your drive.
  6. If errors are found, follow the on-screen instructions to repair them.
  7. After the disk check is complete, restart your computer.
  8. Once your computer has restarted, attempt to use the ZIP function again to see if the issue has been resolved. If not, proceed to further troubleshooting steps.

10. Perform a System Restore

If the ZIP function stopped working recently and you suspect that it might be due to changes made to the system, performing a System Restore can help revert your computer’s state to a previous point where the ZIP function was functioning correctly.

  1. Press Windows Key + S to open the search bar, then type “System Restore” and select the Create a restore point option from the results.
  2. In the System Properties window, click on the System Restore button. If prompted for administrator permission, click Yes.
  3. In the System Restore window, click Next to proceed.
  4. You’ll see a list of restore points with dates and descriptions. Select a restore point that predates the time when the ZIP function stopped working. If you don’t see any suitable restore points, ensure that the “Show more restore points” checkbox is checked.
  5. Click Next and then Finish to confirm your restore point selection and start the restoration process.
  6. Windows will restart your computer and begin the System Restore process. This may take some time, so be patient and do not interrupt the process.
  7. After the restoration is complete, your computer will restart again. Log in and check if the ZIP function is now working properly.
  8. If the issue persists or if System Restore fails, you may need to explore other troubleshooting options or seek further assistance.

Conclusion

Encountering issues with the ZIP function not working in Windows 11 can disrupt file management tasks and productivity. By following the troubleshooting steps outlined in this guide, users can identify and resolve common causes of ZIP function issues, restoring the ability to compress and extract files seamlessly.

Whether it involves resetting file associations, repairing corrupted system files, adjusting folder permissions, or temporarily disabling antivirus software, these solutions can help users overcome ZIP function problems and maintain efficient file management in Windows 11.

Leave a Comment

x