Zip of Death or Zip Bomb is a simple looking zip archive which occupies several gigabytes of space when extracted. So, when extracted, it can easily hang or even crash your system. That’s why it is called Zip of Death. However, the more dangerous it is for your system, the easier it is to make a zip bomb or zip of death.
As mentioned above, it’s quite easy to create a zip of death or zip bomb. You just need to create a simple text file with NULL characters and compress it into a zip file. Use high level of compression to make the size of zip smaller. Re-compressing the zip file may reduce the size even further.
INFO: Sometimes, Zip Bomb is also called as Zip virus. However, it doesn’t contain anything like a virus, it’s just a highly compressed archive. You can read more about it here.
Create a Zip of Death or Zip Bomb using Simple Method
So, in this tutorial, we will show you a simple method to make a Zip of Death or Zip Bomb. Be warned, this zip bomb may crash your own system if you mistakenly click on it. You will need 7-zip, WinRAR or any other archiving software to create zip archive.
Step 1: Open Notepad in your PC
First of all, we need to open Notepad. For that, press Windows Key + R to launch RUN utility, then type
notepad and press Enter.
It will open a new Notepad window. We will use notepad to create a zip bomb.
Step 2: Create a Text Document with Null Characters
In notepad, enter a NULL character. Why Null character? Because we will get better compression with Null character ratio compared to random characters.
So, to enter a Null character, type Alt + 255 shortcut on keyboard. This will print one NULL character. Alternatively, you can also use SPACE. After that you can copy and paste the null characters in notepad to make the file size larger.
After the file is large enough, save it to any folder in your PC. In this tutorial, we have saved it in a folder named Zip Bomb on the Desktop. Type a name for it and click Save.
Step 3: Make Copies of Text File and Combine them using CMD
Now, make copies of this text file. You can make as much copies as you can. In this tutorial, we have created around 100+ copies of the same file. Combining more files will make our Zip Bomb or Zip of death even larger.
After that, type following command to copy content of all text files, into single text file named as
copy /b *.txt a.txt
|copy||Used to copy files or folders|
|/b||Used to copy binary content of files|
|*.txt||Copies all text files of current directory|
|a.txt||Copy all the content in a new file with name a.txt|
Once completed successfully, you can delete small files from the folder and keep only newly created
Step 4: Repeat the Process to Make the Zip Bomb Bigger
In previous step we have created a single text file of size 8 MB. Now, we will make the size of the text file even larger (approximately 1 GB). So, make another 120 copies of
a.txt file in the same folder.
Again repeat the same process. Combine these files into single file named as
b.txt using the Command Prompt just like in previous step.
copy /b *.txt b.txt
You can repeat the same process to get even bigger text file to create a zip of death or zip bomb. In this tutorial, we have created the text file of size greater than 5 GB.
WARNING: Do not open this text file on your PC as it may hang or even crash your PC.
Step 5: Compress the Text File into a Zip File
Now is the time to zip it up. Right-click on
b.txt file and select 7-Zip > Add to archive (you need to install 7-Zip to see this option).
Provide a name for your archive and select format as Zip. Then select compression level to Ultra, method to LZMA and dictionary size to 256 MB. Finally, click OK to create a zip archive.
As you click OK, your large text file will be compressed into a smaller zip file. You can check size of newly created zip file, it’s amazingly small in size.
Step 6: Re-zip the Archive to Create the Zip of Death
You can make size of this archive even more smaller by re-zipping it. Make several copies of zip file and select all of them. Then right-click and select 7-Zip > Add to archive. This will create the Zip of Death or Zip Bomb.
After that provide name, select same compression options as in previous step. You can also set a password for this zip file to avoid accidental extraction. Set the options and click OK.
Finally, your zip bomb or zip of death is ready. You can see the size of Zip bomb is just 16 KB. This file contains total of 20×5.5 = 100 GB when expanded.
Download 42.zip Bomb File
Download this file on your own risk. When extracted, it takes around 4.5 Petabytes of space. For security purpose it is password protected.
Make a Zip of Death or Zip Bomb in Windows 10
Now, your Zip Bomb is ready. You must be careful enough not to open it yourself. With this Zip of Death, you can play prank on your friends. Just change the name of text file to some lucrative name that can attract victim to click on it (pun intended). Be generous to your friends and ask them to save all their work before opening this file.
Hope, you liked this tutorial. Feel free to write your problems and suggestions in comment section below.