Read files in zip file without unzipping

205 views (last 30 days)
Etienne  Coetzee
Etienne Coetzee on 5 Jul 2011
Commented: Lars Janssen on 1 Mar 2021
Hi there
I have a zip file with about 100 binary files in. I have a routine to read the files into matlab variables. Is there a way that I can read the files directly without unpacking the zip file?
Thanks in advance.
  1 Comment
Jan on 6 Jul 2011
What do you want to do with a zipped variable? Do you want to unzip one of the files only?

Sign in to comment.

Answers (4)

Bob Hamans
Bob Hamans on 6 Jul 2011
Hi Etienne. I don't know if I understand your question but you just want to list the zip file contents without unzipping? The following code does just that:
function filelist = listzipcontents(zipFilename)
% Create a Java file of the ZIP filename.
zipJavaFile =;
% Create a Java ZipFile and validate it.
zipFile =;
% Extract the entries from the ZipFile.
entries = zipFile.getEntries;
% Initialize the file list.
% Loop through the entries and add to the file list.
while entries.hasMoreElements
filelist = cat(1,filelist,char(entries.nextElement));
Lars Janssen
Lars Janssen on 1 Mar 2021
For those using the code snippet above, please add:
This will "unlock" the java file again. After having some trouble deleting the zip file I found this missing piece of code here:Extracting specific file from zip in matlab - Stack Overflow.

Sign in to comment.

Etienne  Coetzee
Etienne Coetzee on 6 Jul 2011
Ok, thanks Robert. I will log it as an enhancement.

Robert Cumming
Robert Cumming on 6 Jul 2011
have you seen this thread - you could try what it suggests in your own copy of unzip.m - or send an enhancement request to Mathworks.
Its actually quite easy to update the m file(s):
1. Change the number of accepted input arguments to 3.
2. Handle the third input agument (say a cell array of requested files) or set to default (empty cell array)
3. Pass the 3rd argument into the private function extractArchive
4. In the private function do a strcmp on the entryName and your cell array of requested file(s) - if match found extract, if not skip to next (use continue in the while loop)

Brunno Machado de Campos
Brunno Machado de Campos on 11 Jan 2018
Hi, If anyone is until interested, for zip, on Windows (where I tested):
a = fopen('','r');
c2 = fread(a,'uint8=>uint8');
zipname = char(c2(31:31+c2(27)-1));
zipname = strcat(zipname')

Sign in to comment.


Community Treasure Hunt

Find the treasures in MATLAB Central and discover how the community can help you!

Start Hunting!