.rar, .zip files MIME Type

The Solution to .rar, .zip files MIME Type is

The answers from freedompeace, Kiyarash and Sam Vloeberghs:

.rar    application/x-rar-compressed, application/octet-stream
.zip    application/zip, application/octet-stream, application/x-zip-compressed, multipart/x-zip

I would do a check on the file name too. Here is how you could check if the file is a RAR or ZIP file. I tested it by creating a quick command line application.


if (isRarOrZip($argv[1])) {
    echo 'It is probably a RAR or ZIP file.';
} else {
    echo 'It is probably not a RAR or ZIP file.';

function isRarOrZip($file) {
    // get the first 7 bytes
    $bytes = file_get_contents($file, FALSE, NULL, 0, 7);
    $ext = strtolower(substr($file, - 4));

    // RAR magic number: Rar!\x1A\x07\x00
    // http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAR
    if ($ext == '.rar' and bin2hex($bytes) == '526172211a0700') {
        return TRUE;

    // ZIP magic number: none, though PK\003\004, PK\005\006 (empty archive), 
    // or PK\007\008 (spanned archive) are common.
    // http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZIP_(file_format)
    if ($ext == '.zip' and substr($bytes, 0, 2) == 'PK') {
        return TRUE;

    return FALSE;

Notice that it still won't be 100% certain, but it is probably good enough.

$ rar.exe l somefile.zip
somefile.zip is not RAR archive

But even WinRAR detects non RAR files as SFX archives:

$ rar.exe l somefile.srr
SFX Volume somefile.srr

~ Answered on 2011-08-11 14:22:43

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