What Is an ARJ File?

How to Open, Edit and Convert ARJ Files

Screenshot of several ARJ files in Windows 10 that open with PeaZip
ARJ Files.

A file with the ARJ file extension is an ARJ Compressed file. Like most archive file types, they're used to store and compress multiple files and folders into one easily manageable file.

ARJ files are useful if you're backing up lots of files or sharing several items with someone. Instead of losing track of all the files and folders or having to share each file specifically, you can package all of them into one ARJ file to treat the entire collection as if it were a single file.

How to Open an ARJ File

ARJ files can be opened with any popular compression/decompression program. I like 7-Zip and PeaZip, but there are several free zip/unzip tools to choose from, including the official ARJ program.

If you're on a Mac, try The Unarchiver or Incredible Bee's Archiver.

Regardless of the one you choose, any of these types of programs will decompress (extract) the contents of an ARJ file and some may also have the ability to create ARJ compressed files.

The RAR app from RARLAB is an option for opening ARJ files on an Android device.

Tip: Use Notepad or another text editor to open the ARJ file. Many files are text-only files meaning no matter the file extension, a text editor may be able to properly display the file's contents. This is not true for ARJ Compressed files but your ARJ file might actually be in a totally different, obscure format that is really just a text document.

If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the ARJ file but it's the wrong application or if you would rather have another installed program open ARJ files, see our How to Change the Default Program for a Specific File Extension guide for making that change in Windows.

How to Convert an ARJ File

If you're wanting to convert an ARJ file to another archive format, the best way to do that would be to go ahead and extract all of the contents held in the ARJ file and then compress them to a new format using a file compressor from the list mentioned above.

In other words, instead of looking for an ARJ to ZIP or RAR converter (or whatever format you want to convert the ARJ file to), it'd be easier and probably quicker to open the archive to detach all of its data from the ARJ file. Then, just re-make an archive but choose the format you want, like ZIP, RAR, 7Z, etc.

There are, however, online ARJ file converters, but since they make you upload the archive online first, they're not very useful if your archive is really large. If you have a small one, you can try FileZigZag. Upload the ARJ file to that website and you'll be given the option to convert it to a number of other archive formats like 7Z, BZ2, GZ/TGZ, TAR, ZIP, etc.

You might try the online ARJ converter at Convertio if FileZigZag doesn't do what you want.

Still Can't Open Your File?

Files that don't open with the ARJ openers above are most likely not ARJ files. The reason you're mistaking your file for an ARJ archive might be if the file extension looks like ".ARJ" but is really just a letter or two off.

For example, ARF and ARY files share the same first two file extension letters, and so do ARJ files, but these three formats are not related and therefore will not open with the same programs. Follow those links to learn more about those file types if double-checking your file's suffix shows that it's really an ARF or ARY file.

If, however, you are positive that your file ends with .ARJ but it's still not working like we describe above, see Get More Help for information about contacting me on social networks or via email, posting on tech support forums, and more. Let me know what kinds of problems you're having with opening or using the ARJ file and I'll see what I can do to help.