Type:Encoded File

Acronym: MacBinffddczcascdcxvvdcary Encoded File

Compressed file that is encoded as binary or MacBinary; stores a finder header, data fork, and resource fork; ensures the Macintosh Hierarchical File System (HFS) resource fork and data fork are both kept in one file; commonly used to transfer Macintosh files over the Internet.

There are multiple MacBinary formats: MacBinary, MacBinary II, and MacBinary III. MacBinary files have largely been replaced by .DMG files.


Type: Disk Image Files

Acronym: Binary Disc Image

Opens With: Roxio Creator 2012, Roxio Toast 11

Disc image created from an optical disc; stores the binary data copied from a CD or DVD; can be mounted by the computer and recognized as a physical disc; similar to the standard .ISO disc image format.

BIN files are often saved with other metadata files that describe the disc contents. For example, they are often saved with a .CUE file that describes the ordering of data in the binary image.

If a BIN file will not open, it may be opened by some disk utilities by changing the extension from ".bin" to ".iso."


Type: Video Files

Acronym: Binary Video File

Opens With: VideoLAN VLC media player

Video file saved as raw binary data from a DVD or other media; may be saved along with a .CUE file that describes what data is saved in the BIN file.

Since BIN video files may contain long streams of video, they may be several gigabytes in size.


Type: Data Files

Acronym: Generic Binary File

File that stores data in a binary format; different than a text-based file, which can be edited in a text editor; may be created by a variety of different programs; typically cannot be manually edited.

Disk images are typically binary files, though they often use other file extensions. BIN files may also be used for firmware updaters.


Type: Game Files

Acronym: Sega Genesis Game ROM

Game ROM of a Sega Genesis video game; stores the data from a Sega Genesis cartridge in a single data file; can be played on a PC using a Genesis emulation program.

Sega Genesis ROMs also use the .SMD file extension.


Type: Executable Files

Acronym: Unix Executable File

Program, or compiled binary file, that can be run on a Unix operating system, such as Linux or FreeBSD; may be run from the command line by typing "[filename].bin," where [filename] is the name of the executable file.


Type: Game Files

Acronym: Nintendo DS Binary File

Opens With: DeSmuME, Ensata DS Emulator, DSOrganize, NO$GBA

Binary file used by the Nintendo DS series portable gaming systems; contains executable data for a Nintendo DS game; can be used to patch, or modify, emulated Nintendo games for DS emulators.

BIN files are commonly found within .NDS files.


Type: Executable Files

Acronym: Generic Binary Executable File

Executable file used for running various programs; may contain both executable code and data required to start a program; may be created for Mac, Windows, or Unix platforms.

An example binary executable file is soffice.bin, the quick starter program for


Type: Game Files

Acronym: Atari 2600 Game ROM

Opens With: Stella, z26

Atari 2600 ROM used by Atari emulators such as Stella and PCAEWin; contains an exact copy of the original game cartridge; used for playing Atari games on computers; commonly downloaded as a .ZIP file, which can be extracted to the BIN file.


Type: Game Files

Acronym: PCSX PlayStation BIOS Image

Opens With: PCSX, ePSXe

BIOS file used by PCSX and other variants of PlayStation emulation software; saves an image of the PlayStation BIOS, which enables the emulator to replicate the game console's functionality; allows games to be run exactly as they are run on the console.

A valid BIN file is required for PCSX to emulate the PlayStation.