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7-Zip


At STP, the preferred software for creating and extracting .zip files is 7-Zip which is a free tool. 7-Zip supports AES-256 encryption, which is a high level of security, and recommended by STP.
Zip files created with AES-256 can be opened with 7-Zip and WinZip, but not necessarily with other .zip software and not by Windows built-in compression features.
STP staff should always use 7-Zip, as you can use the one-click encryption method (see below) only with this software. The password that is automatically applied to any .zip files created this way is changed regularly and you can check the current password in the Technology Yammer group, under the Info section to the right of the page.

STP staff

STP staff members should not download 7-Zip themselves but use the installer in this folder \\fs\Tech\ReadOnly\Installers\7Zip.
After installing 7-Zip, make it your default program for opening .zip files by going to Start Menu > 7-Zip File Manager > Tools > Options. Under the column with your username, click on the space next to .zip file type until it says 7-Zip and click OK.


How to create password-protected and encrypted .zip files

After you've installed 7-Zip, you will automatically be able to use the one-click encryption to create STP encrypted and password-protected .zip files. All .zip files generated this way use the same password. The Tech team will update the password regularly, and this changed password will automatically be applied to any new .zip files you create using the one-click encryption.

  1. Select all folders or files you want to include in the .zip file and right-click on the selection
  2. From the menu, select STP Encrypted ZIP
  3. You will get a file named STP_Encrypted_yyyy-mm-dd.zip (with the current date's time stamp) in the same folder. Running the STP Encrypted ZIP again in a folder where a .zip with today’s date stamp already exists will add files to the existing .zip rather than create a new one.



Freelancers

Freelancers can download 7-Zip from https://www.7-zip.org/. Make sure to download the correct version for your operating system. Also, note that Windows users should ensure to download and install the 64-bit version of 7-zip (x64) if you use 64-bit Windows, and the 32-bit version 7-zip (x86) if you use 32-bit Windows. Using the 64-bit version on 32-bit Windows won’t work, and while the 32-bit version will work on 64-bit Windows, the context menus will not appear, so the below instructions on creating encrypted .zip files will not be correct.

After installing 7-Zip, make it your default program for opening .zip files by going to Start Menu > 7-Zip File Manager > Tools > Options. Under the column with your username, click on the space next to .zip file type until it says 7-Zip and click OK.

How to create password-protected and encrypted .zip files

  1. Select all folders or files you want to include in the .zip file and right-click on the selection
  2. From the 7-Zip menu, select Add to archive...
  3. Type in the password (same one you use to open .zip files received from STP) and make sure the encryption method is AES-256
Never distribute passwords and zip files together!