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Media Software GNU is Not Unix IT

Unarchiver Provides LGPL RARv3 Extraction Tool 183

An anonymous reader writes "Free software to support the RARv3 archive format has been listed on the FSF's High Priority Projects list for some time now. We've always had ways to create and extract free archive formats, using tools like GNU tar and Info-ZIP. The RARv3 format is proprietary, so we don't want it to replace these tools, but it's not uncommon to see it used for distributing multimedia files over the Internet. That means the lack of free software to extract RARv3 files has been sorely felt. We're happy to share the news that there's now a free software project to fill this gap, and we can mark this item as done. The Unarchiver is a small collection of software written by Dag Ågren."
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Unarchiver Provides LGPL RARv3 Extraction Tool

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  • Re:Yay piracy! (Score:5, Informative)

    by dougmc ( 70836 ) <dougmc+slashdot@frenzied.us> on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:22AM (#36090358) Homepage

    Compressing my HD rip to save 5MB on a 50GB download!

    In the case of movies, it's not so much that it saves space, it's more that it breaks the large file up into more manageable chunks and it also gives you checksums to know if something got corrupted.

    This isn't particularly important for distribution methods like bittorrent which provides it's own checksums and doesn't have problems with files over 2 or 4 GB, but for some other distribution methods it does make a big difference, especially when you throw par2 files into the mix for correcting problems.

  • by 1u3hr ( 530656 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @12:41AM (#36090430)
    I assume theyr'e using "free" in the not-as-beer sense, since there are plenty of free apps that can unrar , 7-Zip for example. True, these all seem to use code available from RAR that isn't "free" . E.g., from the 7-Zip licence:

    unRAR restriction
    The decompression engine for RAR archives was developed using source
    code of unRAR program.
    All copyrights to original unRAR code are owned by Alexander Roshal.

    RAR is pretty much the default foprmat on Usenet binary groups, for instance.

  • by peppepz ( 1311345 ) on Wednesday May 11, 2011 @03:49AM (#36091102)
    You could already download the UnRAR source code from the RAR web site itself; if all you want to do is to extract RAR files, its license doesn’t look too evil (I'm quoting the most "problematic" part):

    The UnRAR sources may be used in any software to handle RAR archives without limitations free of charge, but cannot be used to re-create the RAR compression algorithm, which is proprietary. Distribution of modified UnRAR sources in separate form or as a part of other software is permitted, provided that it is clearly stated in the documentation and source comments that the code may not be used to develop a RAR (WinRAR) compatible archiver.

    OK, it's no GPL, but still I'd say that it puts "open source" RAR support in a better position than other high priority GNU projects such as Flash support, where your only chance to have a good experience is to use binary-only code.

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