How to determine MAC file types


Joined
Apr 5, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Hi All,

Firstly I am not a Mac user of any description. I had my first look at MAC OS X only a few weeks ago. I have a fairly decent grasp of Windows but have only ever logged into a Mac twice!

A friend of mine's iMac died a painful death a few weeks back where the HDD became completely unreadable and started making a screeching sound everytime the machine was powerd on. The HDD could not be accessed or read at all and she subsequently lost all of her Data.

Now she did have a backup of some files but these were on 120 MB SuperDiscs and were almost all (as I eventually figured out) in Appleworks format.

After sourcing a used SuperDisc drive and converting most of the files to word/excel readable format on a newer eMac (which I can, occassionally, beg for access to from the guys I work with) I was left with only one file unreadable.

The eMac did not recognise the file and could not associate a program to open it.

So my question is how do Macs determine file type? The files all had no extension and it was sheer luck that the eMac had Appleworks V6 on which recognised the file type as an older version and automatically assigned that program to open them.

I believe that the files were created on a Mac running os 8.1 but I have no access to a machine with this operating system to see if there is a program which recognises the files automatically.

Is there a way I can look at the data (metadata??) to confirm the file type and be able to either open it or convert it to a windows readable format?

The conversion part would be a nice to have but knowing which program I need to open it on a Mac would be a fantastic start.

I also only have limited access to the Mac I mentioned so if the answer included a way to do this from a PC that would be perfect (but not necessarily completely required)

As I stated I am a complete beginner when it comes to macs so don't assume I know anything, chances are, I don't! And anyone kind enough to take the time and respond I am extremely grateful to and will be forever indebted to you!

Thanks in advance
Bazza
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Apr 5, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Didn't expect this to be as difficult. Looks Like I May have to post it to another couple of forums and see how I get on....... :eek:/
 
Joined
Jul 21, 2007
Messages
1,252
Reaction score
15
Hello, go to Finder's Preferences, click the "Advanced" icon, and check the box that's adjacent to "Show all filename extensions." You can also find information about a file by clicking on it one time and pressing Command-I on your keyboard.
 
Joined
Apr 5, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Thanks for taking the time, I'll try those when I can get into the eMac again. Probably tomorrow.

Thanks Again
Bazza
 
Joined
Apr 5, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Didn't get access to that Mac until today. The file doesn't appear to have any extension when I select to show all extensions. And under Command-I it reports that it is a "Unix Executable File" but it was definitely created on a Mac. Any ideas what could have created it?

Thanks Again
Bazza
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jul 21, 2007
Messages
1,252
Reaction score
15
Perhaps, the same application/s that produced the other files. The resource fork info was possibly stripped as the result of being backed up to a disc that doesn't retain this info or doesn't retain it well enough.
You might want to manually add an extension to this file. Use an extension that worked on the other files. You could also try opening the application/s that were able to open the other files and give them a shot at opening it, as opposed to double clicking on the file.
Quite frankly, if your friend has no idea what that file is and she doesn't consider it a loss, I'd recommend not wasting the time on it. However, if you're set on restoring this file, the fastest and easiest way besides what I've already mentioned, would be to download an app called File Juicer and give it a shot. If File Juicer can't extract anything from that file, I don't know what can.
 
Joined
Apr 5, 2010
Messages
7
Reaction score
0
Sorry for the prolonged response but I haven't been able to get near the mac in work for weeks so had to go back to the friend short of this file.

She seems happy with everything I eventually managed to recover so I think I will leave it at that.

Thanks for your help Walrus666. Under normal circumstances I would hate leaving things like this and am very interested in what type of file the solitary unknown is, but sometimes you have to give up the ghost I suppose.

If only I had my own mac I could investigate the issue on...........

Maybe that's taking this particlar issue to far.

Thanks again.

Bazza
 
Ad

Advertisements

Joined
Jul 21, 2007
Messages
1,252
Reaction score
15
If you're interested in getting a Mac, the last time I checked, eBay had some great deals on eMacs. I wouldn't recommend buying anything older than the G4 1.25 GHz model. As far as the file is concerned, feel free to upload it so we can take a look at it.
 

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments. After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.

Ask a Question

Top