Changing the Default WinRAR Installation

Categories: Advanced, RAR Command Line, WinRAR, WinRAR Help | Posted on Feb 18, 2015

I recently received the following support question:
“How can I integrate ISO with WinRAR for all the computers in a silent installation?
I’ve performed silent install with /S. But, with the default installation ISO is not associated with WinRAR.”

After searching my memory and doing a bit of research, I found the answer. There is a way to change the default installation by using a modified WinRAR.ini file that does all the tricky bits for us.

Like most answers, the information we need is the WinRAR Help topics, Configuration settings, WinRAR.ini file. In a rather convoluted way it explains that by default WinRAR stores all its settings (including the .ISO setting) in the Registry, but of course we cannot easily copy them to another computer, but it describes how it is possible to transfer WinRAR Registry settings to a WinRAR.ini text file so that they will automatically be installed into another computer at installation time.

When WinRAR starts up, it searches for WinRAR.ini, first in its own \WinRAR folder and then in %APPDATA%\WinRAR. So by using the registry settings data from an installation that already has .ISO etc. checked during its setup, then using the “Create WinRAR.ini file” command in the “Import/Export” submenu it creates a new WinRAR.ini file that includes the existing WinRAR settings from its Windows Registry ready for use in a silent install.

We don’t even need to copy that WinRAR.ini file either to a newly created WinRAR folder, or to %APPDATA%\WinRAR, to make it work as its much easier than that. A note at the bottom of the WinRAR Help, Configuration settings, WinRAR.ini file, section reads; “If a winrar.ini file is present in the same folder as the WinRAR.exe installer, WinRAR.ini will be copied to the WinRAR program folder after completing the installation”.

I have not had a chance to try that for myself, but by copying the newly created WinRAR.ini file into the same folder as WinRAR.exe it will set .ISO (and whatever registry changes you have made) on every install, including silent installs.

Go to the WRHT Forum to comment on this post