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What is the .WMF File Extension?

.WMF File Extension Description:

The WMF or Windows Metafile Format is the native graphics file format of Microsoft Windows that uses both vector and bitmap-based picture information. This 16-bit file format was introduced in Windows 3.0 and uses the WMF file extension.

The Windows Metafile is further improved with additional commands to a newer 32-bit Enhanced Metafile (EMF) format. It also has compressed versions such as the WMZ (Compressed Windows Metafile) format and the EMZ (Compressed Enhanced Metafile) format.

Essentially, a file with the .wmf file extension stores a list of function calls issued to the Windows Graphics Device Interface (GDI) layer in order to restore the image. It includes executable code, which can be used by some GDI functions that accept pointers to callback functions for error handling.

The WMF file extension is a proprietary file format of Microsoft. It has an interface that can store pictures in portable form, which can be delivered by processing and parsing the file with the .wmf file extension.

Files with the .wmf file extension contain a series of variable length records containing graphics drawing commands, properties and object definitions. The file starts with an actual header record including the type, version, size, number of objects defined, and the size of the largest single record in the metafile. WMF records have a generic format in which every record contains its record size, record function, and its parameters, if any. The WMF end-of-file record terminates all files with the .wmf file extension.

The WMF file extension specifies structures for defining a graphical image. Because it contains commands, property definitions and graphics objects that digitally records an image, the recording can be played back to reproduce that image. Furthermore, files with the .wmf file extension can be shared among applications and can be used for storing images.

Author: Microsoft Corporation
Author URL:
Related Applications: EMF, WMZ, EMZ
Common Path: N/A


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Do you have errors with .WMF files?

The Frequent Cause of .WMF files Errors:

A typical and frequent cause for .WMF files errors is failure in the Windows registry - cleaning is needed to protect against additional harm in other software and/or devices. Risks include system device failure, blue screen errors and fatal software crashes.

.WMF files Errors - Common Symptoms:

Typical symptoms with .WMF files errors include poor system performance, extended program start up speed, problems saving files, long suspensions in application functions, software closes without giving an error, input halts and programs crash.

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Repair .WMF File Errors    |    What is the .WMF File Extension?    |    Scan for .WMF File Extension Errors