Home BASH A Bash Function To Extract File Archives Of Various Types

A Bash Function To Extract File Archives Of Various Types

By sk
Published: Last Updated on 4662 Views

There are so many applications available to extract various types of archive files. Remembering all options and parameters of each archive tool would be difficult for you. No worries! Today, I came across a simple Bash function to extract file archives of various types in Linux.

This Bash function can able to extract most commonly used archive formats, such as .tar.bz2, .tar.bz, .bz2, .rar, .zip, and .7z etc. You don't need to use the actual archiving application to extract an archive file! Just add this function to your ~/bashrc file and call it to extract the archive files. It will automatically find and use the appropriate archiving tool to extract the files. No need to memorize the flags and options!

Bash Function To Extract File Archives Of Various Types

Open your ~/.bashrc file:

$ nano ~/.bashrc

Add the following snippet at the end:

# Bash Function To Extract File Archives Of Various Types
extract () {
     if [ -f $1 ] ; then
         case $1 in
             *.tar.bz2)   tar xjf $1     ;;
             *.tar.gz)    tar xzf $1     ;;
             *.bz2)       bunzip2 $1     ;;
             *.rar)       rar x $1       ;;
             *.gz)        gunzip $1      ;;
             *.tar)       tar xf $1      ;;
             *.tbz2)      tar xjf $1     ;;
             *.tgz)       tar xzf $1     ;;
             *.zip)       unzip $1       ;;
             *.Z)         uncompress $1  ;;
             *.7z)        7z x $1    ;;
             *)           echo "'$1' cannot be extracted via extract()" ;;
         echo "'$1' is not a valid file"

Press Ctrl+o and press ENTER to save the file and then press Ctrl+x to exit the file. Run the following command to take effect the changes:

$ source ~/.bashrc

From now on, you can simply call this function to extract various types of archive files.

For example, I am going to extract a .7z archive file type using command:

$ extract archive.7z 

Sample output:

7-Zip [64] 16.02 : Copyright (c) 1999-2016 Igor Pavlov : 2016-05-21
p7zip Version 16.02 (locale=en_IN,Utf16=on,HugeFiles=on,64 bits,4 CPUs Intel(R) Core(TM) i3-2350M CPU @ 2.30GHz (206A7),ASM)

Scanning the drive for archives:
1 file, 16013693 bytes (16 MiB)

Extracting archive: archive.7z
Path = archive.7z
Type = 7z
Physical Size = 16013693
Headers Size = 1204
Method = LZMA:23
Solid = +
Blocks = 1

Everything is Ok                                                               

Folders: 21
Files: 37
Size:       16625007
Compressed: 16013693

Similarly, to extract .zip type files, the command would be:

$ extract archive.zip 

Please note that you must have installed the appropriate archive manager before using this function. If there are no supported archive tools installed on your system, you will receive an error message like below:

$ extract archive.zip 
bash: /usr/bin/unzip: No such file or directory

The original author of this script is unknown. This script is mentioned in multiple places on the Internet. If anyone know who wrote this, please let me know in the comment section below. I will add the author's details.

Are you using any other cool Bash functions? Please share them via the comment section. It could be useful for me and as well as all readers.

Related read:

You May Also Like


Jamil sn November 3, 2020 - 4:46 pm

As that is a Bash function, you should use test [[ instead of [ .
Also, you may lose the original compressed file. So make a copy before extracting it.
Also you may add case clauses:
*.deb) ar x “$1”;;
*.tar.*) tar xvf “$1” ;;

jtpm November 7, 2020 - 7:13 pm

How do you put that in a file in /opt/extract.sh
so you can call it in .bash_aliases
alias extract=’. /opt/extract.sh’

sk November 7, 2020 - 7:27 pm

Yes, it should work. You need to add the following code in your ~./bashrc file:
if [ -f ~/.bash_aliases ]; then
. ~/.bash_aliases

jtpm November 7, 2020 - 8:56 pm

I already have that in ~/.bashrc

The script works fine if the code it’s in ~/.bashrc

(After changing the name to extract2 in ~/.bashrc)
I use the same code in: /opt/extract.sh

$ ls -l /opt/extract.sh
-rwxr-xr-x 1 userx userx 730 Nov 7 12:05 /opt/extract.sh

If I tried to use as an alias I got the error
$ extract fileName.zip && echo ok
bash: /opt/extract.sh: line 3: syntax error near unexpected token `(‘
bash: /opt/extract.sh: line 3: `extract () {‘

It does not do nothing If I execute
$ /opt/extract.sh fileName.zip && echo ok
$ sh /opt/extract.sh fileName.zip && echo ok
$ bash /opt/extract.sh fileName.zip && echo ok
$ . /opt/extract.sh fileName.zip && echo ok
bash: /opt/extract.sh: line 3: syntax error near unexpected token `(‘
bash: /opt/extract.sh: line 3: `extract () {‘



Leave a Comment

* By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More