How to Open .Dat Files

There are times when we come across a file which is in .dat extension and since it is not associated with any file type, we are clueless of its real file type.

Then what should we do to open and read it? Here are few steps that you should do to open the .dat file and see what it contains.


  • There is no way that can tell us what type of file it is and what should it conatin. It can contain any file like Image (.jpg or .gif) file or movie (.avi, .wmv) or may be .xls
  • If you try to open it using Notepad, there are chances that it may display something that you know along with some garbled text.
  • So to find out what file is it you just have to try renaming it into different file extensions and open using the associated applications.
  • To do that make sure that your extensions are not hidden (Folder Options -> View -> Uncheck “Hide extensions for known file types”).
  • Now try renaming the .dat to something like .xls, .avi, .html, .mp3 or .jpg, there are chances that you will be able to open it in one or two tries.

It will definitely get opened in any of the extensions.

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