Tuesday, December 06, 2005

MacOnMacs: File Types and the Applications That Love Them (Part 1)

I'm still having problems with jeffmacarthur.com not forwarding here. Is there anyone else out there who has had that problem? If so then please leave me a comment to let me know (as the hosting company thinks I'm on crack and that there's never a problem with forwarding). In any case, on to the post...

It's frustrating not knowing what to do with files that bear extensions that you haven't seen before, so I thought I'd give everyone some handy tips on which applications will open some strange file types (keep in mind that there are usually more options to open a file than the ones I present here). I figure there will be many occasions to expand on this list, so I've decided to tag this post as "Part 1" ;-) .
  • .rar open with UnRarX - RAR is a file format (most common on Windows) that takes multiple files and packs them into one file (like .zip files). There are also multi-part RAR files which may have extensions such as .r00, .r01, .r02, etc. OR .001, .002, .003, etc. To expand unpack these, just open the first file with UnRarX and it will reassemble all the components into the original file.

  • .chm open with Chamonix - CHM stands for Compiled HTML. It's commonly used as a Help file type with Windows.

  • .cbr and .cbz open with FFView - CBR and CBZ files are typically archives used for comic books. CBR is the same as a .rar file and CBZ is the same as a .zip file. These file types can be opened with the programs that open .rar (above) and .zip (built into Mac OS X) files, but FFView gives you a nice viewer/interface to read them.

  • .wpd and .wp open with AbiWord - These are both WordPerfect document formats (a very popular word processor before Microsoft Office dropped all support for its files).


Since I only had a few file types up this time and since this is the first in the series, I figured I'd add some value by letting you know how to get certain file types to open with specific applications by default...
  1. Find the file you'd like to open and Get Info on it (choose the file and hit command-I OR right/control-click->Get Info OR File->Get Info);
  2. Go to the "Open with:" section of the pop-up and expand it (by making sure the arrow points downwards);
  3. In the pulldown menu select the application that you'd like to use to open this file by default (the currently assigned application will have "(default)" written beside it in the pulldown);
  4. Hit the Change All button to make the selected application open all files of this type (as opposed to just the individual file you've selected).

BTW, if you want to open an individual file once with a non-default application then just right/control-click->Open With OR File->Open With, and then select the application you'd like to open the file for this time only.
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12/06/2005 09:31:00 PM  


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December 07, 2005 5:39 AM  
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December 07, 2005 3:16 PM  
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December 15, 2005 1:32 PM  

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