How to Use Download Files ( ending in .zip )

Most files available for download from the Craven County GIS office are compressed into smaller "zip" files (ending in ".zip")** to enable faster downloading. You will have to "decompress" the file back to its original format before you can view or use it. Remember that a decompressed file(s) will be much larger in size.

** ".zip" files are created specifically for Windows 95, 98, and NT operating systems.

Note: Craven County GIS does not provide consulting or training on how to the use the information downloaded.

Four Steps to Successfully Use Download Files (*.zip)

1. Getting Ready to Download Files

Organizing your download files will help. You may wish to create a new folder (directory) called C:\Download for your use.

Using Windows Explorer: highlight your C: drive, and then select: "File", "New", and "Folder". Rename this new folder "Download".

2. Download a File

Microsoft Internet Explorer (MSIE), Netscape Communicator, Opera, and other browsers work in similar ways. After you click the filename you want to download, a small window will open and ask you, "What would you like to do with this file?" or something similar. Select "Save it to disk" or the "Save" choice, and then click OK.

When the familiar "Save As" window appears, use it to navigate to your newly created C:\download folder and select "Save."

Watch and wait until the file has finished downloading.

3. Decompress or unzip the .zip file

The compressed, .zip, files that you download are ready to be run however, they can act in one of several different ways. Here are a few examples of what may happen when you double-click on an .zip file that you have downloaded.

An installation routine may begin immediately. In this case, all you need do is follow the instructions that are presented to you.

A small window may appear that explains that the file will extract to a particular folder. You may wish to change the folder, or at least make a note of where the files are being placed. At the conclusion of the file extraction process, an installation process may begin. If it does not, use Windows Explorer to navigate to the folder where the files have been placed. Once there, you can look for the file, double-click on it and it will install.

Caution: When the compressed file is unzipped, it will produce a file(s) you can open or view in an appropriate software program, such as these FREE viewers:

"shape" is ESRI Shape File. For more information visit ESRI's website.  Get ESRI's free ArcExplorer© shape file viewer.

"dxf" is AutoCAD® drawing file. To modify these files you must have AutoCAD®   loaded on your computer. AutoCAD® is a product of AutoDesk, Inc®.  Get a free AutoCAD® Drawing viewer, Volo Viewer Express (16.9Mb download).

4. Open the file in the software you want to use to review the data.

At this point, your program should allow you to open, save, analyze and view the data.


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Who can I contact for additional assistance?

For technical questions or problems associated with downloading GIS files, please contact the GIS Administrator, Lou Valenti by using the following e-mail address: lvalenti(at symbol) or Phone:(252)636-6650. Please include your phone number when e-mailing.

* Any reference to ESRI, ArcExplorer, AutoCAD, Volo, or AutoDesk does not constitute a recommendation or endorsement by Craven County.