While Windows 8 has built-in native support for compressing and extracting zip files, it requires you to access the desktop app, open File Explorer, and select the archives to enable the Extract tab.
Some time ago, Waqas covered an excellent Modern UI app called 8 Zip that lets you view, extract and create ZIP archives on your Windows 8 and Windows RT device without having to switch to desktop mode but recently, the app went from being free to paid with a price tag of $7.99.
If you don’t want to shell out that sort of cash just for extracting archives on your Windows 8 or RT device, have a look at Unpacker.
It is a Windows 8 app that allows you to unpack compressed archives and supports multiple formats including ZIP, RAR, 7z and several others. It provides simple controls for extracting the complete contents of the archives or the selected elements only, to a location of your choice. More on Unpacker after the jump.
The app is designed with focus on productivity and simplicity. As soon as you launch the app, you can navigate to the required archive and start extracting its contents Hover your mouse over an archive to view its details including name, format, type, date of creation, size and complete path. To get started with extraction, simply select an archive and press OK.
When loaded, you can specify the options for extracting the files from the archive including Path Handling and Unpack location. When everything is configured, click the yellow Unpack button to start the process.
Just like any decent file extraction utility, you can either unpack the complete archive, or select specific files and folders from it to be extracted. Just right-click the folders and files that you want to extract and click Unpack to extract only those items from the archive.
When you install the app, it automatically takes over as the default app for handling compressed files. Just open an archive from File Explorer, and the app will be automatically launched with the selected file preloaded.
Unpacker works on Windows RT as well as both 32-bit and 64-bit version of Windows 8.