Mac101 – Compress Folders

Compressing Folders in the macOS has been around for a long time. It presents you with a “.zip” file which is the industry standard for compression. It makes emailing a folder of files much easier, it works with PeeCees as well. But, there are other reasons to compress folders on your Mac.


Compressing Folders

Basically, there are three reasons why I compress folders on my Mac. One is to email a folder of stuff to other people. Another is to save space on my Mac. Another is to encrypt the resulting .zip file for security reasons. I think the most common use for me is emailing folders and saving space on my HD. In the saving space category I want to mention that a typical way to save space is with projects (in my case websites) that you have completed, but want to save. If you compress those project folders you can save quite a bit of space over time. This is a review for most of you, but here is how to compress folders. First, select the folder to be compressed. In this case, a website project that I no longer use this particular app to produce, but want to save the folder:


This folder is 3.1 MB:


Then just right-click on the folder and choose “Compress”:


The macOS will compress the folder into a “.zip” file. In this case it has been reduced down to 2.4 MB:


Now, that is not a ton of savings, but if you do this enough you can save quite a bit of space on your hard drive. Which, of course, makes for faster and smaller backups as well. By the way, I did this compression with my PathFinder app, but the actual macOS Finder does the same thing.

There is one more thing. There are third party apps that compress files and folders on the macOS. They pretty much all cost money, but they will make a slightly smaller compressed zip file than what the macOS turns out. If you really get into this you might consider buying one, just search the App Store or online.


I have been going through my iMac HD compressing older project files one by one. It is making a difference for sure and the files just store better with less chance of corruption.