Open SWF File

Information, tips and instructions


Open SWF File

SWF file extension is used to store Adobe Flash multimedia file format. SWF (pronounced “swiff”, short for “Shockwave Flash”) file format was developed by FutureWave Software Inc in 1995 and released as a storage format for FutureSplash Animator software on Windows and Mac OS. FutureWave Software Inc was acquired by Macromedia in 1996 and FutureSplash Animator was renamed to Macromedia Flash. Macromedia developed Flash and SWF until December 2005 when it was acquired by Adobe. Macromedia Flash was renamed to Adobe Flash and Adobe took control of the SWF file format.

SWF file format is currently released as a format with an open specification from Adobe available at SWF and AMF Technology center (https://www.adobe.com/devnet/swf.html). Anyone can use the specification to create software which uses SWF format. Adobe removed license limitations to SWF format as part of Open Screen Project in 2008.

SWF file format provides following features:

  • On-screen display
  • Extensibility
  • Network delivery
  • Simplicity
  • File independence
  • Scalability
  • Speed
  • Scriptability

SWF is a binary file format with a structure defined by SWF specification. SWF files are also compressed to reduce load when transferred over the internet.

You can open SWF file from your machine in Firefox or Internet Explorer. Chrome and Safari browsers can also play SWF files but due to recent changes it may be more complex. If you cannot open SWF file in your browser you can try downloading the Flash Player Projector from Adobe Flash Player Support Center (https://www.adobe.com/support/flashplayer/debug_downloads.html).

Do not open SWF files from untrusted source. It is possible for SWF file to contain malicious script code which can harm your computer. Attacks are frequently performed using remote buffer overruns in Flash player software to give hacker access to user computer.

Files similar to SWF:

  • FLV – Flash Video
  • MXML – ActionScript files for Apache Flex

Get more information about how to open SWF file.

Also check how to open NOMEDIA file and open ASPX file on Open File Database.

If you are not able to open file with certain file extension make sure to check if extension for the file is correct. It is possible that information in the file doesn't match file extension.

File Extension Info

SWF Quick Info
  Adobe Flash File
MIME Type
  application/vnd.adobe.flash-movie    application/x-shockwave-flash   application/futuresplash
Opens with
  Adobe Flash Player
  Adobe Flash Player Projector