How to Unpack Files with .tar.gz, .tgz, or .gz Extensions on Windows 11

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The article describes how to extract .tar.gz, .tgz, or .gz (tarball) files on Windows 11, which now has native support for these formats. Users no longer need third-party tools like 7-Zip or PeaZip for extraction. The article provides specific commands to use for extracting these files in the Windows Command Prompt.

This article explains how to extract .tar.gz, .tgz, or .gz (tarball) files on Windows 11.

Windows originally didn’t have built-in or native support for files created with the tar command and compressed with gzip “.tar.gz” (tarball). If one needed to extract an archive compressed using any of these formats, that person would need a third-party tool like 7-Zip, PeaZip, or other open-source software.

A tarball file is created using the Unix-based archival application tar and then compressed using gzip compression. It was developed for Linux-type operating systems.

The latest version of Windows 11 has native or built-in support for .tar.gz, .tgz, or .gz files format. No need for additional tools when you want to extract content from these files.

In addition, Windows devices with WSL can use the virtual Linux environment to extract tarballs content.

Below are commands to extract tarball formats in Windows 11 natively and without additional software.

Extract .tar.gz, .tgz, and .gz tarballs

As mentioned above, you don’t need additional tools to extract files created with tar and compressed with gzip in Windows 11 today.

Windows now has built-in support for these file types, and below is how to use it to extract your tarball files.

First, open the Command Prompt app or use the Windows Terminal app and select the Command Prompt tab.

Next, run the commands below to extract a tarball file.

tar -xvzf C:\Users\GeekRewind\Downloads\FileName.tar.gz -C C:\Users\GeekRewind\Documents

The command above specifies the source path, the file’s name, and the extracted content’s destination.

In my case, the command extracts the tar file (FileName.tar.gz) in my Downloads folder (C:\Users\GeekRewind\Downloads\), which is the source, and saves it in my Documents folder (C:\Users\GeekRewind\Documents), which is the destination.

Here are descriptions of the tar command options:

  • tar -tf – List tarball files.
  • tar -xf – Extract tarball files.
  • tar -cf [filenames…] – Create tarball files.
  • tar -zf – tells tar to uncompress the content of a “.tar.gz” file with gzip.

That should do it!

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to extract files created with tar and compressed with gzip on Windows 11. If you find any errors above or have something to add, please use the comments form below.

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