Recently, a lot of vulnerability and security issues have been found due to WinRar. Actually, WinRAR 6.24 corrected a security hole, but it was already underway on WinRAR 7.0. So its first beta version is released with a lot has changed. Creating archives in RAR 4.x format is now removed but unpacking still works.
Moreover, the “Remove redundant directories from the extraction path” option is now also functional for the commands invoked from the WinRAR interface and for multiple archives extracted into separate folders. Earlier, it only worked for a single archive.
WinRAR Version 7.00 first Beta improvements, changes and bug fixes
Here is the changelog:
Improvements and changes
- In WinRAR Version 7.00 first Beta, RAR archive format now supports Compression dictionary sizes larger than 1 GB. Depending on the amount of physically available memory, a dictionary up to 64 GB can be selected. No power of 2 dictionary sizes can be specified for dictionaries exceeding 4 GB. So we are not limited to 4, 8, 16, 32, 64 series and can use values like 5 GB or 22 GB. Archives with dictionaries exceeding 4 GB can be unpacked only by WinRAR 7.0 or newer. Increasing the dictionary size can improve the compression ratio for large files with distant repeated blocks, like virtual machine disk images. It also can be efficient for sets of large similar files in a solid archive, such as a collection of software ISO images differing by version or localization.
- WinRAR issues a prompt allowing to cancel or continue if dictionary size in the extracted RAR archive exceeds the “Maximum dictionary size allowed to extract” parameter in “Settings/Compression”. It is done to prevent unexpected excessive memory allocation. In the command line mode by default WinRAR refuses to unpack archives with dictionary exceeding 4 GB. Use -md or -mdx to allow unpacking dictionaries up to and including the specified size. Unlike -md, -mdx is applied to extraction only and can be added to RAR environment variable, not affecting archiving commands.
- The “Define dictionary sizes” dialog in “Settings/Compression” can be used to customize dictionary sizes proposed in the drop down list associated with “Dictionary size” field in the “Archive name and parameters” dialog.
- Alternate search algorithm, optimized to locate longer and more distant repeated data blocks, can be used when creating RAR archives. It helps to improve the compression ratio and sometimes speed for redundant data like big text files. It increases memory usage and might reduce the compression speed for some types of data. It can be turned on or off with “Long range search” options in “Advanced compression parameters” dialog or with -mcl[+|-] switch. If “Auto” option is selected, WinRAR applies the long range search depending on the compression method, dictionary size and other parameters. This algorithm is required for dictionaries exceeding 4 GB and turning it off is ignored for such dictionaries.
- Much slower and more exhaustive repeated data search and compression algorithm can be enabled with “Exhaustive search” option in “Advanced compression parameters” dialog or with -mcx switch. It might provide the additional compression gain for some types of redundant data, but at much lower compression speed. Long range search is needed to implement this mode efficiently, so the exhaustive search option activates it automatically. Both long range and exhaustive search option do not affect the compatibility of created archives. So if the dictionary size is in 128 KB – 4 GB range, archives created with these search options can be unpacked by all WinRAR versions beginning from 5.0.
- In WinRAR Version 7.00 first Beta, the maximum path length limit is increased from 2047 to 65535 characters.
- Creating archives in RAR 4.x format isn’t supported anymore.
- Options and switches specific for this format are removed. It doesn’t affect RAR 4.x archives decompression, which is included in WinRAR.
- The “Propagate Mark of the Web” option in “Settings/Security” dialog controls assigning the archive Mark of the Web to extracted files. It is possible to prohibit propagating and allow it for several predefined file groups, for all files, or for files matching user-defined file masks. Mark of the Web is the security zone information added by Internet browsers to downloaded files. It can be used by various software for security purposes. It is supported only by GUI WinRAR. Console RAR doesn’t propagate the Mark of the Web regardless of this option.
- “Attributes” column can be enabled in “Settings/File list/Columns”. It displays file attribute abbreviations, such as ‘A’ for “Archive” and ‘D’ for directory. If file attribute isn’t among those recognized by WinRAR, the numeric value of file attributes is also displayed. This value uses hexadecimal format for Windows attributes or octal format for Unix attributes.
- “Benchmark” command allows to specify the exact number of threads and copy results to clipboard. Information about WinRAR and Windows versions, CPU, and memory is added to benchmark window.
- “Remove redundant folders from extraction path” option in “Settings/Paths” is now applicable also to extraction commands invoked from WinRAR user interface and to multiple archives unpacked to separate folders. It removes a destination path component, only if its name matches both the archive name and root archived folder name, provided that there are no other folders or files in archive root. For example, it will remove one of “Pictures” in the destination path if we unpack Pictures.rar containing the root “Pictures” folder to “Pictures\” destination. Previously it worked only for a single archive extracted from context menu and didn’t check if archived folder name matches the last destination path component.
- “Word wrap in comment” option in “Interface” options group in “Settings/General” toggles the word wrap mode in archive comment.
- Dictionary size data in archive information dialog is now available for .bz2, .lz, .tar.bz2, .tar.gz, .tar.lz, .tar.zst archives.
- Switch -ol- prohibits archiving and extracting symbolic links.
- Switches -sl[u] and -sm[u] recognize [k|K|m|M|g|G|t|T] size units for kilobytes, thousands of bytes, megabytes, millions of bytes, gigabytes, billions of bytes, terabytes, trillions of bytes. If unit character is ‘b’, ‘B’ or not present, bytes are assumed. Previously these switches accepted bytes only.
- SFX TempMode command accepts the optional @set:user parameter allowing to modification of temporary folder permissions, so only the current user can access it. It prohibits a local user from replacing files in a temporary folder if SFX is started under another account. It also can be enabled with “Restrict folder access” option in the “Advanced SFX options/Modes” dialog. Some installers might fail to start in a folder created with @set:user parameter.
- File permissions and NTFS alternate streams are not saved for hard link entries. They are saved only for the source file these entries refer to. It allows to reduction in the archive size because such file properties are automatically propagated to hard links copies when extracting.
- Keyboard shortcuts of WinRAR Version 7.00 first Beta such as Ctrl+A to select all files or Alt+E to unpack found archives, are now functional in “Search results” window also while search is still in progress. Previously they were available only after completing the search.
- Switch -v[unit] recognizes ‘t’ and ‘T’ as terabytes and trillions of bytes for volume size units.
- Warning is issued if leading ‘-‘ character is missing in a parameter specified in “Additional switches” field of WinRAR archiving and extraction dialogs. Also, it is issued for parameters lacking ‘-‘ in the RAR environment variable and rar.ini file. Previously such malformed parameters were ignored silently.
- “Convert archives” command displays the smooth total operation progress. Previously the total progress was updated abruptly after converting an archive and was visible only when processing multiple archives.
- Proper progress is displayed when compressing symbolic link targets.
- “Integrate WinRAR into shell” option in WinRAR “Settings/Integration” is grayed out if “Global\Integration=0” is present in winrar.ini file.
- “User defined archive extensions” field in “Settings/Integration” was not saved if winrar.ini was used to store settings and WinRAR was started under non-administrator user account.
Source: Release note.