How to install Unrar Debian 11 Bullseye or 10 Buster Linux

Just like with ZIP, RAR is another format to compress and create archive files on a PC or laptop. This process compresses the data and reduces storage space. RAR (.rar) is one of the common formats of compressing files, hence if you are on Debian 11 or 10 and want to use unrar to extract some RAR format archive file downloaded from the web then here are the steps to follow.

Unrar is the tool available in the Debian Base repository for the extraction of compressed archive (.rar) files. Well, we need to install it manually because Unrar is not pre-installed on the Linux systems.

Here we learn not only the method to install Unrar on Debian 11  or 10 but also how to use its command line to extract or uncompress a RAR archive file.


Install and use Unrar on Debian 11 or 10 Linux to extract RAR files

Step 1: Apt update

Run the system update command to refresh the system APT cache and also to install if there are any updates available for your system.

sudo apt update


Step 2: Command to install Unrar in Debian 11 or 10

As I said in the introduction, Unrar is available via the default base repository of Debian Linux, hence just use the APT package manager to fetch its packages and install them using the given command:

sudo apt install unrar-free

Install Unrar Debian 10 or 11 Bullseye


Step 3: Unrar options to use

Once the installation is completed we can see what are the options available to use with this command-line tool. For that use the help parameter.

unrar --help

Here is the output:


Extract files from rar archives.

-x, --extract                Extract files from archive (default)
-t, --list                   List files in archive
-f, --force                  Overwrite files when extracting
    --extract-newer          Only extract newer files from the archive
    --extract-no-paths       Don't create directories while extracting
-p, --password               Decrypt archive using a password
-?, --help                   Give this help list
    --usage                  Give a short usage message
-V, --version                Print program version



Step 4: Extract a RAR File using Unrar on Debian Linux

Next, we learn if we already have some .rar file then how to use Unrar to extract or uncompress the same using command line:

unrar -x filename.rar

Replace the filename.rar with the actual RAR file that you want to extract.

For example:

I have a file called sample.rar in the Downloads folder, then first I will switch to the Downloads folder.

cd Downloads

And then to list the files available there, we can use:


Now, to extract, simply use Unrar with either x or e option along with the filename.

unrar -x sample.rar


unrar -e sample.rar

COmmand to extract RAR file using Unrar tool on Linux


Step 5: To List the RAR file content

Before extracting the content of some RAR compressed files using Unrar on Linux, we can list all the available folders and files inside it directly on our command terminal. For that use -t option.

unrar -t filename.rar


unrar -t sample.rar

List Rar file content on Debian Linux


Step 6: To extract the RAR file in another folder

If you don’t want to extract the RAR file content in the same directory where it exists then we can mention some other directory for it.

For example, let’s create a directory called: Test

mkdir test

Now, extract rar content in the Test folder.

unrar -x filename.rar /path-of-foler


unrar -x sample.rar ~/Downloads/test/

Unrar file in some other directory


Step 7: Unrar or uncompress some password protected RAR file

Well, there are many times when we get a password-protected RAR file from the web or over email. Use -p option.


unrar -x -p filename.rar


unrar -x -p pass-sample.rar

Enter the password.

Extract password protected RAR file on Debian Linux


Other Articles:

How to Upgrade Debian 10 Buster to 11 Bullseye Linux
Linux Zip Commands to Archive or Unarchive files
Install WPS Office on Debian 11 Bullseye



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