Were you unable to send some files that your colleague needed due to the limit on the “weight” of attachments imposed by his e-mail box? It’s really a pity because it’s always for matters of a few MB (if not KB) that you can’t send everything. In short, it would be enough to compress the files a little and the problem would be solved. Well, then what are you waiting for?
If you have read the title of this tutorial, you will already know that I am going to explain to you how to compress a file thanks to some extremely effective (as well as easy-to-use) programs, online services, and apps for smartphones that allow you to reduce the “weight” of documents Office, PDF, images and videos without significantly altering the quality. What are their names? How are they used? Now I’ll explain everything in detail calmly.
Take a few minutes of free time, make yourself comfortable, and follow the instructions below. In the end, I have no doubts, you will be able to say you are very happy and satisfied with the result obtained. Good continuation and good luck with everything!
How to compress a ZIP file
Need to compress a particular file or the contents of an entire folder inside a ZIP file? In this case, the tips that I am going to give you in the following sections of this chapter will certainly come in handy.
The easiest method to create a ZIP file on Windows and macOS is to use the standard tools included with your operating system. If you intend to create a compressed archive that can contain multiple files inside, take care to copy all the elements of your interest into a folder, so as to further speed up your work.
Having said that, let’s see how to proceed. If you use Windows, right-click on the file or folder to be compressed and, if you use Windows 11, select the Compress item in the ZIP file from the menu that opens; on previous editions of Windows, you must instead place the mouse on the wording Send to and then click on the Compressed folder option, available in the additional panel that appears.
Regardless of the chosen procedure, within a few seconds (based on the number and type of elements to be compressed), a file in ZIP format will be created with the same name as the folder or file to be compressed, in the same position of the original element.
On Mac, the procedure to follow is quite similar: right-click on the file or folder to be compressed, select the Compress [item name] item from the menu that opens and wait a few moments for the creation of the archive to be completed. By default, it has the same name as the source element and is in the same location.
Where the system utilities do not meet your needs, you can also use one of the numerous zipping programs available on the Net, which I told you about in my specific guide on the subject.
From smartphones and tablets
Even the file management apps available on Android and iPhone / iPad allow you to create archives in ZIP format very easily. Let me tell you about it in detail.
If you’re using an Android device, try locating the above feature in the operating system’s default file manager app. For example, on Xiaomi smartphones the file management app is simply called File Management: after opening it, tap on the folder symbol at the top, go to the position where the items to be compressed are located, and put the sign of tick each of the files/folders to add to the archive.
When you’re done, tap the (…) More button located at the bottom, select the Compress item from the menu that opens and wait a few moments for the creation of the ZIP file to be completed.
If your device’s file manager is Google Files, you’ll be able to view the contents of any ZIP file, but not create new ones; in this case, you must necessarily turn to an alternative file manager or a specific zipping app, such as ZArchiver or WinZip ( more info here ).
If you use an iPhone or an iPad, you can obtain the same result using the Apple File app, pre-installed on all the “bitten apple” devices: after opening it, touch the Browse tab at the bottom and go to the location that contains the file or folder of your interest.
At this point, make a long tap on the selected element, select the Compress item from the panel that appears later and that’s it: following this operation, a ZIP file will be created containing the selected element, in the same position in which the latter is located.
How to compress a PDF file
Now let’s move on to PDF files: using the right tools, it is possible to reduce the space occupied on the disk in a very simple way. You will find below how to proceed.
One of the best software suitable for effectively compressing a PDF document is certainly Adobe Acrobat Pro: the program, distributed by the same software house that invented the PDF format, is compatible with both Windows and macOS and is extremely simple to use. It is commercial software (basic, a user license costs €24.39/month), which can still be tried at no cost and with no usage limits for a period of 7 days.
To activate the trial version of Adobe Acrobat Pro, connect to this website, click on the Activate trial button and proceed with the activation of the free trial, providing your email address, and valid payment method among those supported (credit cards /debit or PayPal) and completing the creation of an Adobe account; nothing will be charged before the end of the promotional period, provided that the automatic renewal of the subscription is deactivated in advance.
At the end of the procedure, proceed with the download and installation of the Acrobat Reader software, following the instructions I have given you in this guide; at the end of the process, start the program, click on the Help menu > Login… and log in with the credentials used to activate the free trial. Following this operation, the software should update and automatically introduce all the paid features provided.
The game is practically done: now click on the File > Open… menu of the program, open the PDF document to be compressed, and, when loading is complete, click on the File menu > Save as other > PDF with reduced dimensions. Finally, set the compatibility options you deem most appropriate, click the OK button and, when prompted, specify the folder in which to save the file, to complete the procedure.
Don’t forget: to avoid unwanted charges, remember to deactivate your subscription within 24 hours before the end of the trial period. To do this, go to this website, click on the Manage plan item corresponding to the Adobe Acrobat Pro box, press the Cancel your plan button, and type your Adobe ID password again in the dedicated field.
Finally, press the Continue button, put the check mark next to the item My free trial version has expired and complete the procedure by pressing the Continue button again (twice consecutively), No thanks and Confirm.
If, on the other hand, you use a smartphone or tablet, I suggest you contact iLovePDF: it is an app available for free on the Play Store, on alternative Android stores, and on the iOS/iPad App Store, which allows you to make various types of modifications to PDF files, including compression. Keep in mind that it’s cloud-based, so the processed files will be uploaded to remote servers.
After downloading the app from your device’s reference store, open it and, if requested, provide the necessary permissions to access the smartphone or tablet memory; having reached the main screen of the app, open the Tools section, accessible by pressing the symbol of the three horizontal lines or the appropriate button at the bottom and, from there, select the Compress PDF item.
At this point, choose the file of your interest using the panel that is proposed to you, touch the Next button, and indicate the compression level you wish to obtain, among those available; to start the file editing procedure, press the Compress button. Finally, touch the Go to file button, touch the ⫶ button next to its name and choose whether to open it, share it in another application or store it in a different location, using the options that are offered to you.
If you believe that the solutions illustrated so far aren’t exactly right for you, consult without hesitation my guide on how to compress a PDF file, in which I was able to introduce you to more programs, apps, and online services suitable for the purpose: I’m sure you don’t you will regret it!
How to compress a Word file
Despite what you might think, compressing a Word file, in order to make it smaller in terms of disk space, is possible and far from complicated: you will find everything explained below.
If you need to reduce the size of a Word file from your computer, I invite you to operate using Word itself: the program, in fact, allows you to reduce the “weight” of the images contained in the documents and to exclude the embedding of fonts from them. used, extremely useful operations to achieve the goal you set for yourself.
So, to get started, download and install Word on your computer (if necessary), open the program in question, and click on the File tab or menu, located at the top. Now, click on the wording Open, select the document on which to intervene, and wait for it to be loaded into the program.
At this point, select any of the images contained in the document, click on the Format tab and press the Compress images button, located at the top left; subsequently, put the check mark next to the wording To all the images of the document (so as to apply the setting to all the graphic elements) and confirm the wish to proceed by pressing the OK and Apply buttons.
Another trick you can take to reduce the size of a Word file is not to incorporate the fonts used in the document: to do this, click on the File menu, then on the heading Options (or Other > Options ), and select the item Saving from ‘further panel that opens (located on the side). At this point, remove the check mark from the item Embed fonts in the file and press OK to confirm the change.
Once the above operations have been performed, save the document by going to the File > Save menu and choosing the DOCX format as the save extension.
Keep in mind that all the software in the Microsoft 365 suite has functions for compressing images and excluding fonts, therefore you can use the same instructions seen so far also to compress an Excel file and compress a PPT file.
Alternatively, you can also get appreciable results using free third-party software, such as NXPowerLite: to learn more about it, take a look at my specific guide on how to compress a Word file.