Knowledge Base

How to Open TIFF Files

TIFF is a very early file format for images which was initially developed in 1987 and is still popular in applications such as Adobe Creative Suite and Photoshop. TIFF stands for Tagged Image File Format and is a popular format due to its flexibility to support multiple image processing applications. TIFF is also commonly referred to as TIF and is typically used for bitmap data.

Although you can easily open images with .TIFF file extensions with an image processing application, such as Adobe Photoshop. If you do not own these applications it may be necessary to reconfigure your PC in order to open and view a TIFF file. You can also choose to use a free software application that is designed to open a TIFF file. First, let’s cover the first option of reconfiguring your PC.

No Application is Associated with This File Type

When you attempt to open an image with .TIFF extension, sometimes you will receive a message “No application is associated with this file type.” This can be a frustrating experience when you have no knowledge of TIFF formats and how they work.

If you are experiencing an error message when attempting to open a TIFF file, here is an easy fix that you can try to enable TIFF viewing with the Windows operating system. Keep in mind that the steps may vary slightly according to the version of Windows you have installed on your PC, but here is a general fix:

  • Open My Computer: Click on Start and then choose My Computer from the pop-up menu. You may also be able to access My Computer right from your Desktop. When the My Computer window opens, choose Tools and then click on Folder Options.
  • Access Files: Choose the Files tab and allow it load the list of file extensions. Scroll down the list until you see TIFF and then click on it once and choose Change. Choose the program you want to use to open the TIFF file and then click on OK.

If you are using Windows 7, it will be necessary to open the Control Panel. To do this, click on Start and then choose Control Panel from the pop-up menu.

  • Choose Default Programs: When the Control Panel window opens, click on Default Programs and then choose “Associate a file type or protocol with a specific program.”
  • Find the TIFF File Extension: Once the extension list loads scroll down the list and locate TIFF. Click on TIFF once and then choose Change Program to open a list of recommended programs.
  • Choose a Program: Choose a program from the list for opening the file and then click on OK.

It is also important to mention that you must accomplish the above steps by choosing both .TIF and .TIFF from the list. Also, if one program you choose for opening a TIFF file does not work, then try an alternative program from the list.

Converting TIFF Files

If you still are unable to open a TIFF file, you may want to consider converting it to another extension such as .jpg, .png, or other. In this case you can opt to use Photoshop if you happen to own the program or you can search online for graphics converter software. There is a host of reliable freeware online that will help you convert image formats.

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