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Thread: Computer files

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003

    Computer files

    I have used computers for awhile but just recently got interested in the inside of this thing. I am aggrevated that I can not read 3/4 of the files in my computer because of the language used. It's all a bunch of mumbo-jumbo. How am i to feel secure surfing the web, if i can't read what is in the files that I've picked up along the way?

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    #1. You probably are not going to understand any of the files right off the bat.
    #2. Start learning some programming languages (search the forums for topics related to where you should start with a language).
    #3. Check out some search tools (for example, search this website for tutorials, search google for tutorials). You aren't going to understand anything by someone telling you. You need to learn for yourself, as most everyone here has done.


  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    >>I am aggrevated that I can not read 3/4 of the files in my computer because of the language used.

    Sometimes if your file associations dont recognize a file, it will open in your default text editor, in windows this is usualy notepad. Alot of these files are binary, or specialy formated files. And in these cases they will look like mumbo-jumbo. This is normal, as instructions for your operationg system and/or your cpu are usualy contained within these files.

    To read these files you need the associated viewer program that can execute them. As an example, open a jpeg or gif with notepad, you see mumbo-jumbo. If you double click a image however, it will open in the associated viewr program. And this program understands the formate of the file and can display it to you.

  4. #4
    AO übergeek phishphreek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    It is not necessarily a safe thing to do to keep opening files...

    To be on the safe side, create a copy of those files you wish to check out just in case you fux0r something.

    Also... look into hex editors...

    I hope you have GREAT backups... (and store the backups somewhere other than your hard drive!) as I've messed up many operating systems and had to do several format/reinstalls from messing about. If you can get your hands on an old/spare pc... do your experimenting there. It won't matter much if you mess something up on that...

    Like journy101 said, read up about file types/extentions and what type of program is associated with it.

    www.google.com is your best friend when learning computers.
    Quitmzilla is a firefox extension that gives you stats on how long you have quit smoking, how much money you\'ve saved, how much you haven\'t smoked and recent milestones. Very helpful for people who quit smoking and used to smoke at their computers... Helps out with the urges.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Why dont you start with some simple things like JAVA or C++ and learn what all the
    "mumbo-jumbo" means

  6. #6
    Member GandalfTheGray's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    You say you have been using computers for a while, but that doesn't let us know exactly what you know. At the risk of insulting you, let me give you some basic information.

    As you probably know, most files are named (something).(extension)

    Here are some places you can find out what the extensions mean and what programs might be necessary to read them.


    If this is too basic, I'm sorry, but it occured to me that the earlier answers might have assumed too much.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    I think if you could tell us what the files where we would be able to assist you a lot better.

    For instance I could tell you where to find tutorials if it's a programming language you need to read. If it's just hex then a hex editor as mentioned would do the trick.

    I hope this helps
    - The mind is too beautiful to waste...

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Thank you all for your responses. I know how to run programs but not how to interpret them. I feel that nothing anyone would suggest would be too basic. Thank you very much for your help. I will try what each of you suggested. : )

  9. #9
    Senior Member Maestr0's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Some quick definitions you should understand to help you properly form your questons.

    data- http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/D/data.html
    binary file - http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/b/binary_file.html
    text file- http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/T/text_file.html
    packed file- http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/P/packed_file.html
    batch file - http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/b/batch_file.html
    executable- http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/e/executable_file.html
    compiler- http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/c/compiler.html
    source code- http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/s/source_code.html

    A list of MANY file extensions and their assosciated file types to help you determine what file is opened by which program. Trying lookng up some files on your machine in this list by their extension and see what kind of a file they are.


    Hopefully these will enable you to ask more specific questions, which will definately help everyone here answer them for you!

    \"If computers are to become smart enough to design their own successors, initiating a process that will lead to God-like omniscience after a number of ever swifter passages from one generation of computers to the next, someone is going to have to write the software that gets the process going, and humans have given absolutely no evidence of being able to write such software.\" -Jaron Lanier

  10. #10
    In response to what Maestr0 said, Webopedia is a great site for terms. You may want to subscribe to their daily term email which picks a computer term and explains it in detail. I've found it is a good way to pick up on unknown terms.
    \"I have not failed. I\'ve just found 10,000 ways that won\'t work.\" - Albert Einstein

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