Problems with zip files

A customer, Brian, had a problem with his computers zip program and couldn’t get his backing track to unzip.

His PC kept telling him the file was corrupt even after he’d downloaded it anew.

I tested the download from the very same link he had and it downloaded perfectly and unzipped perfectly.

Immediately I knew what the problem was – he was using a Windows computer and Windows is very poor at handling downloaded zip files.

Thankfully there is a solution…

Hi Brian

Windows and Internet Explorer will normally download a zip file no problem and with ease. But if you then find there is a problem with that downloaded file (perhaps Windows says it is corrupt or just refuses to open it) then you will need to download it again anew – and that’s where Windows has problems.

Windows isn’t very good at all at over-writing files you download.

Yes, Windows will tell you it has over-written the file with the new downloaded file, but it often doesn’t actually do that.

Instead, Windows keeps the original file and compares it with the new downloaded file and if it thinks they are both the same, it keeps the old file (even though it tells you it has over-written the old file with the new download)!

The only way to force Windows to download a file you tried to download previously anew is to COMPLETELY get rid of the original downloaded file (i.e. remove all traces of that file completely from your hard disk before trying to download it again).

It’s also good practice to download the new file to a different folder, just in case there are any traces of the old file still there.

Apple Mac users don’t need to worry about this problem though because Mac computers never overwrite a file on your hard disk when downloading it anew. Instead Mac computers give the new download a different file name by adding the number 1, 2, 3, 4 etc to the end of the file name each time you download it.

This keeps all your backing track downloads separate and distinct (wake up Microsoft and start offering this facility in Windows please). And while you’re at it Mr Gates, please fix Windows built-in unzip program – it’s terrible, especially in Windows Vista!