WinRAR received a big update today to version 5.0. Currently in beta stage of development, the new revision introduces a new archiving format and plenty of improvements touching on the compression and encryption algorithm.
There’s a new archiving format available, RAR5, whose algorithm supports up to 1GB of compression dictionary size on the 64-bit version of the application and a limit of 256 on the 32-bit one.
Both editions can unpack archives with any of the two dictionary sizes, though.
The file time in the RAR5 archives store the file time according to Coordinated Universal Time standard and not the local time, which comes in extremely handy when exchanging them to different time zones.
Furthermore, there is multi-core support for the decompression job.
Improvements brought to the table by the new archive format also touch on resistance to damages and errors that might occur, due to the Reed-Solomon error correction codes RAR5 packages rely on.
One thing you should keep in mind when working with RAR5 archives is that they are not compatible older WinRAR versions.
The new release also cuts down on some features such as authenticity verification (due to lack of reliability), support for file comments in RAR 4.x and RAR 5.0 archives.
Also removed is the switch “-en” for the new format because they always have the end of archive block, which prevents external information from being added to the package.