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What is an FAX File?

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Question: What is an FAX File?

Did you find an FAX file on your computer and wonder what program should open it? Maybe someone emailed you an FAX file but you're not sure how to use it. Perhaps you tried to open the FAX file but Windows told you that it could not open it.

Before you can open an FAX file (assuming it's even a file format that's intended to be viewed or edited), you'll need to determine what kind of file the .FAX file extension refers to.

Answer: A file with the FAX file extension is a Fax file.

FAX files are usually encoded in the TIFF format. In other words, FAX files are usually just image files. See How To Open an FAX File below for more information.

Other types of files may also use the FAX file extension. If you know of any additional file formats that use the .FAX extension, please let me know so I can update this information.

How To Open an FAX File:

The easiest way to open an FAX file is to double-click on it and let your PC decide which default application should open the file. If no program opens the FAX file then you probably don't have an application installed that can view and/or edit FAX files.

Warning: Take great care when opening executable file formats received via email or downloaded from websites you're not familiar with. See my List of Executable File Extensions for a listing of file extensions to avoid and why.

Most image management programs should be able to open FAX files, like Windows' default photo viewer, the bulit-in Windows Paint program, Adobe Photoshop, and many more.

If you have trouble getting a FAX file to open, try changing the extension to TIFF or TIF and then try to open the file. This isn't a trick you can usually do with most files, but since FAX files are usually just TIFF files by a different extension, this is likely to work.

If you know anything else useful about FAX files, please let me know so I can update this page.

Tip: Use Notepad or another text editor to open the FAX file. Many files are text-only files meaning no matter the file extension, a text editor may be able to properly display the file's contents. This may or may not be the case with FAX files but it's worth a try.

If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the FAX file but it's the wrong application or if you would rather have another installed program open FAX files, see my How To Change the Default Program for a Specific File Extension guide for making that change in Windows.

How To Convert an FAX File:

There are two main ways to attempt to convert an FAX file to another file type:

The first option involving opening the FAX file in its native program is preferable because it's both easier and will probably result in a more accurate file conversion. Of course if you don't have a program that opens FAX files, a third-party file conversion tool (the second option) could be very useful.

Still Having Problems Opening or Using an FAX File?

See Get More Help for information about contacting me on social networks or via email, posting on tech support forums, and more. Let me know what kinds of problems you're having with opening or using the FAX file and I'll see what I can do to help.

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