7zip gotchas

This is going to be a short post about some gotchas when archiving files with 7zip from the command line.

Archiving files

Let’s start from the following directory structure:

files
|-- file1.txt
`-- file2.txt

Here’s the simplest way to archive those files using 7zip:

7z a archive.zip files

This will create the following structure:

archive.zip
`-- files
    |-- file1.txt
    `-- file2.txt

This is fine, but what if you don’t want the files top directory? Like in this example:

archive.zip
|-- file1.txt
`-- file2.txt

In this case you should use the following command:

7z a archive.zip .\files\*

Slashes, the initial dot (current directory) and the final asterisk are required or else 7zip will fallback to archive everything including the top level directory.

Examples repository

I made a small PowerShell script that you can use to test the examples described in this post. Here’s the link.

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