WinZip Background Tools

Starting with WinZip 23.0, WinZip Background Tools have been simplified and made to be easliy configured by you. These tools can help you to regain space on your system and securely store or delete files.

It is important to note that on Windows 10 you will be unable to use this WinZip feature if you either have all notifications from apps turned off or if you have turned notifications coming from WinZip off.


To use and configure these background tools, you must open WinZip, click the Settings tab, and click WinZip Options. When you click the Tools tab in WinZip Options you will see the five tools. In the picture below, the user has decided to schedule the Temporary File Cleaner to run every 3 days at 10 PM. The other tools, and this one as well, can be run at any time by clicking the Run now button.


Essentially, there are two types of tools. The first three tools listed look in your Documents, Downloads, and Pictures folders. The assumption with these three is that you will want to clean up the files that you have not accessed recently. That means that for these folders, if you have opened or edited a file within the last 30 days, the background tool will not recognize that file as being one you want to clean. If you run one of these tools and have nothing in the particular folder that has not been accessed for 30 days or longer you will be notified that no files were found to clean.


For any of the tools, if you click Run now WinZip will acknowledge that the tool has been started.


Whether manually started or if the tool is triggered by the schedule, when there are files to clean, you will receive a notification telling you which tool has run and what it found.


You now will need to click Take Action to clean your files. Cleaning can be done by deleting the files, which sends them to your Recycle Bin, or it can be done by wiping the files. Choosing to wipe files will make certain that they cannot be recovered.

At this point, a window showing the files found and containing a number of options will display. You may uncheck files you do not want to be cleaned, choose what type of compression to use for those options that create a Zip file, turn off the filter that will show only files accessed over the past year (for those keeping files archived), and turn the Wipe option off or on.


After selecting your files to clean and setting the options you desire, you will need to choose one out of four possible actions, which are:

  1. Wipe (or Delete) Files: That is, simply remove the files if you determine you do not need them.
  2. Zip and Wipe (or Delete) Files: Before the files are wiped or deleted, you will be prompted to choose a location and supply a file name. A Zip file will be created in that location and then the originals will be wiped or deleted.
  3. Move to Local/Cloud Folder: You will be prompted to choose a folder, which can be on a local drive or in a cloud storage service, and the selected files will be moved to that selected folder.
  4. Create Shortcut and Move to Local/Cloud Folder: This action is just like number 3 above, but shortcuts for each file will be created and left in the folder being cleaned.

The tools for Recycle Bin and Temporary folder are the other type offered. For these, the assumption is that you will want to remove all of the files found, even if they were just created today. No zipping and saving options are offered for these two tools. You will only be able to remove all of the files found and will be given the choice to wipe the files or delete them.


On Windows 10 machines, if you do not respond to the notification about a background tool quickly, Windows will move that notification to the Action Center. If you click the Action Center icon in the System Tray, you will see the notification. Then, if you click anywhere directly on this item, Windows assumes you want to take that action. However, if you click the drop down menu arrow in the right side of the notification, the full notification will display, just as it did in the system tray, and you can select either option.

We recommend that you try one or more of these tools. If not all of them are useful to you, some of them could still prove to be helpful.

If you have any questions about this information, please submit a Technical Support ticket.

Related Articles:
The Intuitive WinZip Interface
The WinZip Ribbon
WinZip File Management

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