How to Extract And Decompress BZ2 files in Windows 10

You can easily tackle BZ2 files with the proper file management tool.

by Vladimir Popescu

Being an artist his entire life while also playing handball at a professional level, Vladimir has also developed a passion for all things computer-related. With an innate fascination… read more

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Vlad Turiceanu

Vlad Turiceanu

Passionate about technology, Windows, and everything that has a power button, he spent most of his time developing new skills and learning more about the tech world. Coming… read more

  • BZ2 files are mostly present on Linux and UNIX, but you can also encounter them on Windows.
  • In order to open a BZ2 file on Windows 10 or 11, you can make good use of native tools such as the CMD.
  • There is an even quicker way to unzip BZ2 files. Hand the task over to a dedicated tool, sit back, and relax!


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The BZ2 file format is usually used for Linux or UNIX systems and can only compress one file at a time. It cannot be used for multiple files.

You can though compress multiple files using a different tool and afterward get that final archive and compress it with BZIP2.

Even if BZIP2 is not used in Windows 10 as much as on the other mentioned operating system, there are ways to decompress the BZ2 file.

In this article, we will show you some really easy ways to extract and decompress BZ2 on your Windows 10 device.

How can I extract and decompress BZ2 files in Windows 10?

1. Use a dedicated tool to unzip BZ2 files

There are many tools out there that will allow you to decompress and extract BZ2 files and after testing them all, we would like to recommend you the best one to use.

WinZip is a versatile tool that does not only open BZ2 format files but many more others, such as RAR, 7Z, ISO, IMG, TAR, GZ, TAZ, and TGZ.

This complex software supports all the above formats but is more than just a simple compressing and archiving tool.

WinZip can also repair and manage zip files. In addition, it comes with strong security features. The almost bank-level encryption feature will make sure your files are safe even while compressing them.

If you are sharing them online or sending them via email, then you can rest assured that at any moment your data is safe and secured.

You can password protect your archive and opening them without it would not be possible.

If you will prefer to protect them using a password, make sure to keep a good password manager too at hand.

Here is how you can extract BZ2 files using WinZip:

  1. Make sure to save the BZ2 file on your device.
  2. Download and install WinZip on your PC.
  3. Go to the Integration Panel in WinZip and make sure that the BZ2 file extension check box is ticked.
  4. Launch WinZip from the start menu.
  5. Next, click on File and select Open.
  6. Select the file or files inside the compressed folder.
  7. Click on Unzip and choose where you want them to be saved.

This amazing software makes sending large files via email possible. Most of the time this is a great concern for all members of a team when they need to share a large file.

What WinZip will do, is break the big file (such as ISO images, for instance) into smaller chunks without affecting the image quality in any way.

Moreover, if you are used to working with cloud system storage, such as Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneDrive, you will be able to manage your files inside of the cloud, without having to interrupt in any way your work-flow.

2. Use an online tool to open BZ2 files

Another easy and fast way to extract and decompress BZ2 files is by using an online website.

There are many options out there that will do exactly that and finding the right one for you should not be a problem.

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Usually, decompression websites run locally as a browser app, which will make the process work faster.

Based on how they were created, some will have size limitations for how big can the BZ2 file you are trying to extract, can be. There are websites though that will not have such conditions.

One important aspect that you will need to keep in mind is the privacy of your data. Taking into consideration that you will be uploading information online, it’s important to check how secure the site really is.

Moreover, before downloading the extracted files back on your device, make sure to check that your antivirus is active and working properly.

Considering that the file will be downloaded over the Internet, it’s better to have an extra layer of security that will keep your privacy in check.

3. How to open BZ2 file using Command Prompt

If you want to unzip BZ2 files without using any third-party apps, you can use the built-in Command Prompt app instead.

Through a simple command input in the CMD, your computer will unzip your BZ2 file in no time at all.

1. Press the Windows Key and type cmd in the search box.

2. Right click on the result and select Run as Administrator.

cmd-run internet explorer crash ntdll.dll

3. Command Prompt will now open.

4. Type the following command: $ bunzip2 -k filename.bz2

  • You need to replace filename with the name of the BZ2 file you want to unzip.

unzip bz2 file cmd

5. Press Enter to execute the command.

6. The file is now extracted and you can open it.

There you have it. Extracting and decompressing BZ2 files in Windows 10 can be done pretty easily.

You can either use CMD, use a dedicated tool such as WinZip, or simply extract them online. Any of them are good options and will do the work just fine.

If you have additional comments or suggestions, please let us know in the comments section below.

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