Windows cannot complete the extraction error

Moreover, WinZip does not confine you to performing your tasks strictly on the PC, you can also run it securely via the network and cloud and also pair with popular apps such as OneDrive, Dropbox, or Google Drive.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Best-in-class file compression technology
  • Supports all major file formats for zipping/unzipping
  • Military-grade encryption to protect your confidential files
  • Zip files to reduce email attachment size
  • Versatile shareware features by social media, email, and cloud
  • Integrated watermarking option


Windows cannot complete the extraction? The world’s best compression software is there to take care of your ZIP files.

3. Make the path less than 260 characters

The filename(s) would be too long for the destination – this one happens when the zip folder contains a file that has a long name or it contains a long string of folders inside one another.

Windows Explorer only accepts paths that are less than 260 characters (including the file name); it will refuse to handle longer ones by throwing an error.

There is an easy way to fix this: restructure the folders in such a way that no path is longer than 260 characters.

4. Change the location of the zip file

Sometimes, changing the location of the zip file works too.

The problem is most likely caused when your file is located in a place with a similar pathway:

Moving it to a location with a shorter path will save you some characters and might solve your problem.

5. Configure Windows to support longer paths

  1. Open the Registry. The easiest way to do that is by pressing Windows+ R and typing regedit.type regedit in run Windows cannot complete the extraction
  2. Use the left navigation to go to this address HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetControlFileSystem.
  3. Double click on LongPathsEnabled.
  4. Make sure the Value Data is set to one.Value Data
  5. Restart your computer.

You can also increase the maximum path length allowed in Windows Explorer by configuring the Registry. There is a catch, although.

This method introduces some compatibility issues with old 32bit applications, so if you are using or planning to use those applications, the first method might be safer for you.

Can’t access Registry Editor in Windows 10? Check this guide to solve the issue quickly!

6. Redownload the archive file

The compressed (zipped) folder is invalid – this error can occur when trying to extract or open a zipped folder. It is the most ambiguous of the errors and the hardest to fix.

Perhaps the easiest thing to do is redownloading the archive. Your download manager could’ve faced an internal error or your internet connection messed up during the downloading process.

This could’ve led to you downloading a corrupt file. Redownloading the file, if the size is small, would be really easy to do and wouldn’t require any substantial effort.

No method other than redownloading can help you with a thoroughly corrupt file.

7. Find another source to get the file

archive on your computer

No matter the error you’re getting, if you’ve obtained the archive from the internet, you should try to find an alternative source to download the archive.

Sometimes there is no way around it, the archive was uploaded to their system significantly corrupted, and no tool can help with that.

Thankfully, it is very rare that you can find a file only on one server, and in most cases, if you look hard enough, you should be able to get the file from another source.

We went over the most common errors you’ll face when handling a zip archive on Windows including the commonplace Windows cannot complete the extraction and its variations.

We hope you’ve found this article useful and informative. Please tell us in the comment section if we’ve missed any specific error, or if there is a better and easier way to handle one of these errors.

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