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July
2002

Review: Stuffit

Since I often receive files in a variety of compressed formats, either from clients or off the Internet, I need a utility that can uncompress as many formats as possible. Fortunately, Aladdin Systems’ freeware utility Stuffit Expander will extract a plethora of common compression formats such as Zip (.zip), Stuffit (.sit or .sea), UU (.uu or .uue), BinHex (.hqx), MacBinary (.bin), Compact Pro (.cpt) MIME (.mim or .mime) and Tar (.tar).

The program works simply, it has an interface similar to WinZip, or it has a 'drag & drop' interface. In this mode, there are four areas in the Stuffit window: Compress Files, Create New Archive, View Archives, and Expand Archives. When a compressed file is dropped onto the Expand area, a save dialog box pops up so you can direct where the uncompressed files are saved.

Compressing files is also equally easy. Drop files onto the Compress Files drop zone and an archive is created. Stuffit gives you the choice of creating either a Zip file or Stuffit’s native Sit file. Aladdin Systems brags that Stuffit will create a smaller Zip file that WinZip.

Stuffit is available for Windows, Mac OS, Solaris and Linux; they also have a version with additional features and an additional price. Depending on your computing platform you get features like compress and email from Microsoft Office, creating self-extracting archives and file transfer automation. Expander is one of those programs that is so useful that Apple includes it on most new Macs. If you don’t have it already, you can download it from the Stuffit web site (www.stuffit.com).

Paul Vaughn is a freelance graphic artist, writer and web designer. If you would like to see the Graphics Guy address a specific topic email Paul Vaughn at paulv@mac.com. Color examples and previous columns can be seen at www.GraphicsGuy.org.

 

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