How can I view a DAT file
Play, edit and burn
The DAT file type is usually entered in the system as a "VCD Video File". It is possible that these files were created with different codecs, which is why converting or playing these video files does not always work. Usually this error can be fixed by installing a codec pack as well.
- Play DATs on PC or Mac
* .dat stands for "datafile". It is mostly not a stand-alone media, rather the data contained in dat files supplement other software with content. Components can be graphics, audio or text.
The easiest way to open dat files is always with the software that created them. Which application is responsible can often be seen in the folder structure: Firefox, for example, stores content in dat files. The affiliation to the browser results from the fact that they can be found in a subfolder of the Firefox directory on the hard drive.
Open in the text editor
Basically, the files can be opened in text and programming editors. In addition to the Windows own editor, the free and more extensive Notepad ++ is recommended. If your dat file contains text-based content, the chances are good that you can find out what's behind the file in the editor. Depending on the case, however, only programmers will be able to work with the output of the text editor.
Try multimedia software
Depending on the nature of the dat content, different multimedia applications can be used for opening in addition to text editors. If a dat file (partially) consists of sound or image data, these can be played back by multimedia software under certain circumstances. At this point we list which (multimedia) applications are compatible with dat files. Experimentation may be required here.
If you know the content of a dat file and want to convert it, you will find the right software here.
Protect against viruses
Anyone who has downloaded dat files from the Internet should check them for viruses like any other file type before starting or converting them. We list the right software for all operating systems at this point.
Can't access DAT files under Windows?
If you get the Windows error message "Cannot open DAT files" or "The following file cannot be opened" when trying to play back a video file, this means that you do not have a program for playing videos.
You can play DAT files with the following programs ...
... under Windows
... under macOS
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