How To Zip In Linux

Working with Linux might seem challenging for beginners, but once you know your way around the terminal, you will find that it is a powerful and flexible operating system. One of the tasks you will often find yourself doing is compressing or unzipping files. This tutorial will guide you on how to zip files in Linux using the terminal.

What is a ZIP file?

A ZIP file is a data container holding one or more compressed files or directories. Compressing files makes them smaller in size, thus saving disk storage space and reducing the time it takes to transfer them over the network.

Zipping Files in Linux

To zip files in Linux, we will be using the zip command. If not already installed, you can install it using your distribution’s package manager. For instance, on Ubuntu, you would use the following command:

sudo apt-get install zip

Basic Zip command

Once installed, the basic syntax for the zip command is:

zip [options] zipfile files


  1. zip is the command we are running.
  2. [options] are optional parameters you can provide to change the behaviour of the command.
  3. zipfile is the name you would like to give your zipped file.
  4. files represents the files or directories you want to compress.

Zipping a Single File

To zip a single file, navigate to its location using the cd command and use the following syntax:

zip myfile.txt

Zipping Multiple Files

To zip multiple files, simply list them one after the other, like so:

zip myfile1.txt myfile2.txt myfile3.txt

Zipping a Directory

To zip an entire directory and its contents, use the -r (recursive) option, like so:

zip -r mydir


As you can see, zipping files and directories in Linux is straightforward once you know the right commands. Now you can manage your files more efficiently, saving disk space and transfer time.

For more Linux tutorials and guides, keep visiting our blog. If you have any questions or need further help, feel free to leave a comment below.