SWF files are created by Macromedia and are used with Shockwave Flash for viewing videos on the Internet. SWF stands for Small Web Format, which is a vector graphics file that is used with Macromedia Flash software to play videos using your web browser.
SWF files contain video, audio, vector files, and animation or applets for user interactivity. Files are small in size, so they can be easily published on a website and delivered as a Shockwave Flash Movie. SWF files are also the primary format for displaying animated vector graphics on the Internet with a result that exceeds the open standard SVG.
How to Open SWF Files
SWF files can be opened using a variety of applications, some of which work across multiple operating systems. Since SWF files are created with Macromedia which was purchased by Adobe Systems, Adobe Flash Player is the primary application used to open and play SWF files in your web browser. Flash Player is cross platform and works with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. The application is available as a free download from the Adobe website.
If you use Windows, you can open SWF files using Adobe CS6 Flash Professional and Dreamweaver, any web browser with the Flash plugin, Eltima SWF and FLV Toolbox, Media Player Classic, and GlobFX Swiff Player. You can also choose to convert SWF files to another format using Xilisoft Video Converter Ultimate or RER Video Converter.
For a Mac-based PC you can open SWF files using any web browser with the Flash plugin, Adobe CS6 Flash Professional and Dreamweaver, Echo One iSwiff and Eltima Elmedia Player. If you want to convert SWF files to another format, you can use the Eltima Flash Decompiler Trillix or any compatible conversion software for Mac.
In addition to Adobe Flash Player, the Linux operating system can open SWF files using DCOMSOFT SWF Protector which is capable of reading and encrypting SWF files. You can also use any web browser that is equipped with the Flash plugin.
If you want to open and edit SWF files, you can use Adobe Flash Professional for Mac OS X and Windows. Flash Professional allows you to import SWF files, decompress them, and then edit in the program. Adobe also recommends that you save the file in standard Flash FLA format so you can easily open and edit the file at a later time. If you use Linux, you can edit SWF files using GNU which contains a collection of software applications and developer tools for opening and editing a variety of different file formats.