How to Change an Extension for Media Files and Documents

In general, in order to change extension of audio, video files and documents, you just need to display the file extension and manually rename it. However, problems with such an approach can arise. Novice PC users often believe that if, for example, rename the docx file to the doc, or mkv to avi the files will be opened. However, that happens rarely.

It has to be mentioned that if you want to know more about the file extensions WikiExt.com is the specialized resource which contains all the necessary information on the subject.

Why It Is Not Enough to Rename The File?

The file is defined not by its extension, but its contents; in fact, extension isn’t important at all, it only helps us to define what the type of file it is. If content of the file is not supported by the software installed on your computer or other device, then changing its extension won’t be really helpful.

If you have faced such a file you need to download a converter or program that is capable to open such files. You can find the necessary converter in the web, just enter the query “extension x to extension y converter”, where “x” is the extension of the file you cannot open and the “y” is the extension of the file you can open on your computer with the software you already have. Here are some examples of the files that cannot be just renamed to be opened.

.docx And .doc

The thing is both of the formats were used for Microsoft Office, but the first one .docx was invented for Microsoft Office 2007 and is not supported by the older versions of this program. A couple of years ago, when MO 2007 has just been released, there have been many issues with opening .docx files the Microsoft support had to respond, as most of the users still have used MO 2003 which couldn’t open the .docx files. So there were only two solutions – to download the docx-doc converter or to purchase the MO 2007.

However, when it comes to other file types – .odt, .txt, .rtf etc. you can easily change the file format if you rename the extension into .doc or .docx.

.avi And .mkv Example

.avi is one of the most popular extensions for video files – it is usually used for downloadable media and is supported almost by all video players. On the contrary, .mkv is less popular due to offering less opportunities for size optimization (however, it is often used or release of high-quality video).

Almost all players that support .mkv support .avi files as well, but not vice versa. So sometimes you may need to rename .mkv file to .avi file and there is no result, and sometimes it can be helpful. It all depends on the type of formatting used for the video file, so if renaming wasn’t helpful you just need to download the file converter or player supporting .mkv format.


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