Compress Files serves two purposes: first it allows you to create and send archive files, second it lets you share files with people who work on a PC or Linux computer. Compress Files is very easy to use, with its three main functions (compress, email and archive) accessible from the top of the interface.
To act on a file all you need to do is drag it into the interface and select one of the three tabs. At the bottom of the interface, you'll see a list of three different items to check. When exchanging an archive with a PC or Linux computer we suggest checking both "Omit Mac-specific content files" and "Omit Finder desktop files". Not only will your archive be smaller, but it'll also spare your recipient of the typical .DS_Store files you get when normally transferring items from a Mac to a PC.
As for archiving, Compress Files offers you the most commonly used formats like Zip, Tar or 7Zip and can even create Mac DMG images. Compressing is usually pretty quick, but will also depend largely on the size of the file you are using. It's also important to note that the application will not decompress files for you.
In terms of drawbacks, we felt that Compress Files lacked extra information, particularly in the preferences menu, and the progress bar did not show clearly enough the progress in compression.
All in all, Compress Files is a handy tool to share files with other non-Mac computers.