WinRAR 6.1 improves support for Windows 11 and drops it for Windows XP

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Key notes

  • Bad news for all of the users that still haven't upgraded from the long-obsolete Windows XP.
  • The latest version of the archiver no longer supports this old,  Microsoft operating system.
  • However, WinRAR 6.1 is the first version that supports Windows 11’s new context menus.
  • Minimum requirements are Windows Vista, and Windows 7 and 8 will lose support next year.

RARLAB, which if you didn’t know is the developer of the archiving software WinRAR, just released WinRAR 6.1 this month.

This totally fresh version of WinRAR changes the system requirements, and therefore support for Windows XP has been totally and permanently dropped in 6.1.

So, if you still haven’t decided to move on from this obsolete Windows version, we strongly recommend you do, for safety reasons, and also to be able to keep using your favorite software.

Windows XP loses support for the latest version of WinRAR

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, as many developers have already ended support for Windows XP and will pretty soon end it for other versions of the OS as well.

For the time being, the minimum required operating system for WinRAR 6.1 is Windows Vista, which by the way is not supported by Microsoft anymore, and Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 are supported until January 2023.

As a matter of fact, WinRAR 6.1 is the first version of the application that supports Windows 11’s new context menus, as Microsoft changed the File Explorer right-click context menu in its Windows 11 operating system.

The tech giant added a newly designed context menu to File Explorer but kept the classic context menu as one of the options so that users can open it if required.

As a result, numerous third-party application entries are not displayed in the new context menu right now as companies need to publish updates to support it.

However, one of the limitations of the context menu is that programs are allowed a single top-level entry or menu item only, thus the new WinRAR context menu on Windows 11 lists all WinRAR commands when selected.

Keep in mind that users can change the functionality in the Cascaded context menus section of the Preferences, option which determines whether a submenu with all WinRAR commands is displayed.

Disabling the option changes the context menu items to a single extraction or archiving command, which users may select under Context Menu Items.

Also worth mentioning is the fact that the new Legacy context menus option may be used by WinRAR users if menu items are missing from the legacy context menu of Windows 11 or in the context menus of third-party file managers.

And before you get the wrong idea, we need to clarify that the setting is only available on Windows 11 devices.

WinRAR 6.1 introduces several other changes and improvements. The archiver supports the extraction of .zst and .zipx archives now.

The option to create RAR5 recovery records has a new maximum limit; it is now 1000%, which means that the recovery volumes size can be up to 10 times larger than the actual size of the RAR volumes.

A recovery file size larger than 99% of the archive is only supported by WinRAR 6.1 or newer, and the same is true if the number of recovery volumes is greater than the number of protected RAR volumes.

If you want to use this latest version of WinRAR you don’t have to go to extreme lengths to get it, just download it from the official page.

More about the topics: Windows 11 Software & Apps