File Compression Tools

File Compression Tools

ZIP’s and RAR’s

Compressing a file can dramatically reduce its size. Managing file size is an effective way of overcoming the bandwidth limitations of slower Internet connections.

ZIP is the standard file type (or extension) for compressing files or folders. On modern Windows and Macintosh computers, files or folders can be compressed into a ZIP archive simply by selecting the applicable folders/files, clicking file and then compress X items on a Macintosh, or send to, followed by compressed folder on a Windows computer. This will copy the selected files into a single, compressed archive.

Another form of compressed file is a RAR. Compressing a file into a RAR can be more effective than the standard ZIP format, but RARs require a proprietary program to compress and decompress, so using them is neither recommended nor supported.


Blackboard tools: compression tools

The speed at which you can load a document to Blackboard and at which your reader can download it from Blackboard is determined by its file size. Some files require compression to be usable. For example, Power Point file formats were designed for projection onto a large screen, so they are rather large, data rich files. When a Power Point presentation is viewed on a computer monitor, most of the data in the file is irrelevant, and simply slows the transmission process. These files need compression to be usable on a monitor. The situation is more or less the same for PDF files, depending on how they were initially created.


Powerpoint Compression

To compress Power Point files you can use PowerShrink 2008, which can be downloaded at The trial version has 10 free uses, after which you will need to purchase the software.


Adobe Acrobat (PDF)

To compress PDF files you can use PDF Compress 1.0, which can be downloaded at no cost here.


Image files

To compress graphic (image) files, visit this page.


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