Java Unzip File with Sub-directories

Example of java code to uncompress and extract files from a compressed zip file using package.

The example opens a zip file and starts traversing the files in a similar manner used in walking a directory tree. If we find a directory entry, we create a new directory. If we find a file entry, we write the decompressed file.

See Also: Creating Password Protected Zip with Zip4J

1. Unzip File with

The example uses ZipInputStream to read a ZipFile and then read all the ZipEntry one by one. Then uses FileOutputStream to write all the files into the filesystem.

The following example does the following things:

  • It creates a new folder where uncompressed files will be copied. The folder name is taken from the zip file name without extension. For example, if we unzip the file then it will be extracted into data folder in the same location. ZipFile object represents the .zip file and is used to access its information.
  • The program iterates over all files in the zip, and checks whether it is a directory or a file. ZipEntry class represents an entry in the zip file – either file or directory. Each ZipEntry instance has the compressed and uncompressed size information, the name, and the input stream of the uncompressed bytes.
  • If the ZipEntry is directory then create a new directory inside the target directory data; else extract the file into the location.
  • Using Files.copy(), we read the uncompressed file from the zip and copy this file into the target path.
  • Keep doing it until the whole file is processed.

import java.nio.file.FileSystem;
import java.nio.file.FileSystems;
import java.nio.file.Files;
import java.nio.file.Path;
import java.util.Enumeration;

public class UnzipExample
  public static void main(String[] args)
    Path zipFile = Path.of("c:/temp/");

  private static void unzipFile(Path filePathToUnzip) {

    Path parentDir = filePathToUnzip.getParent();
    String fileName = filePathToUnzip.toFile().getName();
    Path targetDir = parentDir.resolve(FilenameUtils.removeExtension(fileName));

    //Open the file
    try (ZipFile zip = new ZipFile(filePathToUnzip.toFile())) {

      FileSystem fileSystem = FileSystems.getDefault();
      Enumeration<? extends ZipEntry> entries = zip.entries();

      //We will unzip files in this folder
      if (!targetDir.toFile().isDirectory()
          && !targetDir.toFile().mkdirs()) {
        throw new IOException("failed to create directory " + targetDir);

      //Iterate over entries
      while (entries.hasMoreElements()) {
        ZipEntry entry = entries.nextElement();

        File f = new File(targetDir.resolve(Path.of(entry.getName())).toString());

        //If directory then create a new directory in uncompressed folder
        if (entry.isDirectory()) {
          if (!f.isDirectory() && !f.mkdirs()) {
            throw new IOException("failed to create directory " + f);

        //Else create the file
        else {
          File parent = f.getParentFile();
          if (!parent.isDirectory() && !parent.mkdirs()) {
            throw new IOException("failed to create directory " + parent);

          try(InputStream in = zip.getInputStream(entry)) {
            Files.copy(in, f.toPath());

    } catch (IOException e) {

2. Unzip File using Apache Commons Compress

The overall steps for unzipping the file using commons-compress library are similar to as described in first section. Only class names are different other than very few minor differences.

Begin with importing the latest version of commons-compress from maven repository.


Next, we will rewrite the logic using the compress APIs. The major changes are new classes ArchiveEntry and ArchiveStreamFactory and ArchiveInputStream.

  • Instances of ArchiveEntry provide meta data about the individual archive entries.
  • ArchiveInputStream helps in reading the various format of zip files such as .zip, .zip.gz or tar file .tar.gz. For example, to read a tar file we can create an instance of TarArchiveInputStream in following way.
try (InputStream fi = Files.newInputStream(Paths.get("my.tar.gz"));
     InputStream bi = new BufferedInputStream(fi);
     InputStream gzi = new GzipCompressorInputStream(bi);
     ArchiveInputStream o = new TarArchiveInputStream(gzi)) {

Lets create a simple program, similar to first example, that will extract a given compressed file into same directory.

import org.apache.commons.compress.archivers.ArchiveEntry;
import org.apache.commons.compress.archivers.ArchiveException;
import org.apache.commons.compress.archivers.ArchiveInputStream;
import org.apache.commons.compress.archivers.ArchiveStreamFactory;
import org.apache.commons.compress.utils.IOUtils;

import java.nio.file.Files;
import java.nio.file.Path;
import java.nio.file.Paths;

public class UnzipWithCommonCompress {

  public static void main(String[] args) throws IOException, ArchiveException {
    Path zipFile = Path.of("c:/temp/");

  private static void extractZip(Path zipFilePath) {
    Path parentDir = zipFilePath.getParent();
    String fileName = zipFilePath.toFile().getName();
    Path targetDir = parentDir.resolve(FilenameUtils.removeExtension(fileName));

    ArchiveStreamFactory archiveStreamFactory = new ArchiveStreamFactory();

    try (InputStream inputStream = Files.newInputStream(zipFilePath);
         ArchiveInputStream archiveInputStream = archiveStreamFactory
             .createArchiveInputStream(ArchiveStreamFactory.ZIP, inputStream)) {

      ArchiveEntry archiveEntry = null;
      while ((archiveEntry = archiveInputStream.getNextEntry()) != null) {
        Path path = Paths.get(targetDir.toString(), archiveEntry.getName());
        File file = path.toFile();
        if (archiveEntry.isDirectory()) {
          if (!file.isDirectory()) {
        } else {
          File parent = file.getParentFile();
          if (!parent.isDirectory()) {
          try (OutputStream outputStream = Files.newOutputStream(path)) {
            IOUtils.copy(archiveInputStream, outputStream);
    } catch (IOException e) {
      throw new RuntimeException(e);
    } catch (ArchiveException e) {
      throw new RuntimeException(e);

Happy Learning !!

Sourcecode on Github


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