Cannot Open A File? Smart File Advisor Tells You How!

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 20, 2011
Software, Windows, Windows software

Did you ever come upon a file that you could not open in Windows because there was no program associated to the file type that could open it? Maybe you tried to open the file in a text editor, or in a program that you thought would be able to open it. Most users however have probably opened their favorite Internet browser to find a suitable program for the file.

Windows itself offers to search for a suitable file but history has shown that the feature is not as reliable as it should be as no suitable program is offered most of the time.

The free software Smart File Advisor is an alternative to Window's native association search. The application displays its screen whenever a file is loaded that no program is associated with.

It offers to search the file Facts database for an appropriate program to open the file type. It is optionally possible to submit the first 20 bytes of the file which is usually part of the file header to improve identification.

smart file advisor

Users who do not want to search the online database can instead skip the procedure and use Windows to manage the file type. The second option displays the standard Windows dialog to pick a program to open the file.

The program launches the file facts website if the option is selected by the user.

file type identification

The software simplifies the process of searching for a suitable program. Users who do not want to install it can simply bookmark the developer website instead to search for the appropriate program there. Smart File Advisor is compatible with 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows, a download is offered at the File Facts website. (via)


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  1. gtx said on February 7, 2011 at 9:11 pm

    I did suggested them open office :)

  2. Dotan Cohen said on January 21, 2011 at 7:30 pm

    Or, in Linux, one could use the command “file” on a file and it will tell you what type of file it is. Furthermore, this webservice is a joke. Of course I agree that Excel should be the first choice for opening an xls file, but the only choice? Excel doesn’t even run on my computer, I use Open Office for xls files.

  3. bluecrabs said on January 20, 2011 at 11:06 pm

    not being a troll, just FYI for other readers
    If this happens in Linux, you can remove the extension and the file manager (explorer) will automatically look at the header and will open the file with the appropriate program.

    This feature helped me a lot when i had lot of chkdisk *.chk files in my dads pendrive. :D

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