How to Open and View NFO Files in XP and Vista

Many users who download program files on the internet find it difficult to open or view NFO files. These are just text files and using them is very easy.


NFO files are really “info” files. These text files frequently contain information regarding the installation or use of downloaded packages. Here is how to open and use these files.

If you click on an NFO file without following these directions, you will probably get this error:

---------------------------
System Information
---------------------------
System Information cannot open this NFO file. It might be corrupted or an unrecognized version.

You can download many programs to view these text files; however, why not just use Notepad to view them?

1. Browse to the NFO file on your computer.

2. Right-click on the file, and click Open With.

(If you are given several options in the menu here, select Choose Program…)

3. Select Notepad under Other Programs.

(In Vista, you might need to actually click the Other Programs drop down arrow on the right of the Open With window.)

4. Make sure that Always use the selected program to open this kind of file is checked.

5. Click OK.

The Conversation

Follow the reactions below and share your own thoughts.

84 Responses to “How to Open and View NFO Files in XP and Vista”

  1. October 09, 2008 at 5:30 pm, Krishna Kumar said:

    Nice info(nfo)…lolz

    Reply

    • June 11, 2010 at 7:29 pm, Popopop said:

      loser!

      Reply

      • August 01, 2010 at 5:51 pm, www said:

        your a loser cause you say to folks that need help then GAL (Get A Life)

        Reply

    • January 21, 2011 at 2:13 pm, Decryptor said:

      I’m going to reply to this one to get it at the top. when all you see is garbled stuff, then maximize your notepad. People use these .nfo files to hide giant pictures made of junk letters.don’t look at it as pictures, maximize the notepad and disable wordwrap.

      Reply

  2. October 19, 2008 at 8:20 pm, Celeste said:

    Very helpful – been confused for months.

    Thanks!

    Reply

  3. October 20, 2008 at 9:23 am, Kirk said:

    I can open the note pad but what do I do from here? There is no information only symbols etc??

    Reply

    • May 30, 2010 at 3:25 pm, Bridgitte said:

      those symbols are just what people put in the nfos actually, to start it off. If you read further there will be info. They try to be interesting or creative that way but thats most of them. SOME of them keep the info clear.

      Reply

  4. October 31, 2008 at 8:22 pm, Rod said:

    In Vista, I don’t have any problem opening NFO files that accompany downloads however, all they ever contain is my own PC system information.

    Reply

    • November 05, 2008 at 7:34 pm, Andrew said:

      Thats not what is in the nfo tho, thats what comes up when it doesn’t open peroperly. open it with notepad like it describes above and you’ll find that something totally different opens! ;)

      Reply

      • August 23, 2010 at 9:12 pm, wheelie said:

        notepad doesn’t know how to display that type of information, that is why you get the funky symbols.

        Reply

      • September 06, 2010 at 9:03 am, Raa714 said:

        So how do you do it, because like you ,I have no files that are just .nfo at present in computer and quite a few titled info but when right click give me all kinds of files and adobe different files which I thought maybe read or something but what am I really to do. and which file to click on. thanks

        Reply

  5. November 23, 2008 at 4:46 pm, popaye said:

    Many many thanx …i just came to know it from u …..
    previously i thought it might be really a corrupt file ….
    it really open with notepad or wordpad…
    one more question … why windows by default dont open that nfo file by notepad …
    didn’t he recognise that …

    Reply

  6. December 03, 2008 at 10:50 am, Rohan said:

    thnx Im already using this!!

    Reply

  7. December 03, 2008 at 6:01 pm, Rudy said:

    Ths didn’t work .How else?

    Reply

  8. December 09, 2008 at 9:57 pm, Graham L Farrell said:

    Bollox… It just pops up “Access Denied.

    Reply

  9. December 12, 2008 at 12:59 pm, Gogu Ologu said:

    if you have total commander installed then click on .nfo file to select it then press F3 or click the button F3 View. The file will open in a window. In that window press the key S to switch from ansi to ascii. Click the key A to switch back to ansi.

    Reply

  10. December 12, 2008 at 5:25 pm, >>>?<<<< said:

    Lol i donwloaded a movie but it has totaly no sound … my pc gives that error thing
    but could it countain sound ???

    Reply

  11. December 13, 2008 at 7:46 am, ashelectron said:

    Thank you for the advise, works as you said.

    Reply

  12. December 15, 2008 at 9:49 pm, kieren said:

    wow, its that simple :S
    thanks alot

    Reply

  13. December 19, 2008 at 9:27 pm, yeri said:

    you are a lifesaver! thank you

    Reply

  14. December 27, 2008 at 4:17 pm, LowRider said:

    for my NFO file WordPad worked instead of NotePad, by the way thank a lot for usefull post

    Reply

  15. January 05, 2009 at 6:35 pm, nice guy said:

    thx mate

    Reply

  16. January 07, 2009 at 4:12 am, Sally Ann said:

    thx

    Reply

  17. January 16, 2009 at 10:35 am, ray said:

    thanx
    helps much

    Reply

  18. January 23, 2009 at 1:20 pm, Netherlands said:

    sorry.. but this WONT work on ANY Computer.
    just download and instal :

    DAMN NFO VIEWER

    Good Luck!

    MMFWCL

    Reply

  19. January 26, 2009 at 12:32 pm, chuk said:

    thanks man ….
    this lil piece of info …..was very helpful

    Reply

  20. February 12, 2009 at 12:34 am, prosper said:

    thnk man u r a life saver

    Reply

  21. March 09, 2009 at 10:36 pm, ibcaleb said:

    nice lol i didnt know that

    Reply

  22. March 29, 2009 at 3:25 pm, zai said:

    geee thanks a lot! you helped me so much =)

    Reply

  23. April 03, 2009 at 2:28 pm, Toni said:

    I’ve always copy/paste the file and rename the new one to *.txt and then it opens

    Reply

  24. April 05, 2009 at 7:55 pm, chetan said:

    Nice

    Reply

  25. April 15, 2009 at 11:22 am, Someone from the Lithuania said:

    very thank you!!

    Reply

  26. April 21, 2009 at 8:25 pm, dc said:

    I don’t understand why people don’t just export it as a .txt file if that is all you can get when opening in notepad? It’s much more coherent when you do so.

    Why can’t you open it in the System Info Dialogue? What’s the purpose of having the “open” option?

    Reply

  27. May 06, 2009 at 1:33 am, ghee said:

    thanx, works just fine

    Reply

  28. May 06, 2009 at 1:35 am, ghee said:

    thanx,,,works good

    Reply

  29. May 21, 2009 at 9:57 am, Godfather said:

    Thanks a lot!

    Reply

  30. May 27, 2009 at 5:25 pm, UFV Student said:

    thanks. the idea worked but I had to first go to notepad and then open the .nfo file from the “open” browser because notepad wasn’t on the list of other programs

    Reply

  31. June 02, 2009 at 5:10 am, Bunghole said:

    If you use Windows 7, you have to go through the Control Panel, and find Default Programs, and then click “Associate a file type or protocol with a program” .

    Then go down the HUGE list of file types, ’till you find: .nfo (& follow the above instructions)

    =D

    Reply

  32. June 04, 2009 at 4:33 pm, lisa said:

    Thanks a lot! Works perfectly!

    Reply

  33. June 19, 2009 at 4:38 pm, Pakmail said:

    Gracias por la información, fue muy productiva

    Reply

  34. June 27, 2009 at 6:49 pm, Thiago Bomfim said:

    It was helpful, friend. Sometimes internet needs of this basic info, in a simpke language, just like in this post. I know hot to do a lot of things in computer, but don’t had used NFO files before.

    See you!

    Reply

  35. July 12, 2009 at 6:18 pm, Bishno said:

    Thank you very much, great explanation and it’s so easy.

    Reply

  36. July 15, 2009 at 11:17 am, Anonymous said:

    Well its nice but there is another way to open a nfo file.
    Simply… rename the file as “.txt” instead of “.nfo” by right clicking on d file & now open it… here u go…its that easy…..

    Reply

  37. July 18, 2009 at 12:23 am, Anonymous said:

    thank you soooo much this has helped me A LOT

    Reply

  38. July 21, 2009 at 8:20 pm, JimiJamz said:

    Thanx, this helped alot.

    Reply

  39. August 16, 2009 at 8:03 pm, bobjob said:

    thanks alot i can open my file at last

    Reply

  40. September 05, 2009 at 1:14 pm, You don't need to know said:

    Thanks, I’ve been wondering how you open those things

    Reply

  41. October 19, 2009 at 12:55 pm, Anonymous said:

    Thank You!

    Reply

  42. October 20, 2009 at 5:42 pm, Anonymous said:

    THIS WORKED PEFECTLY…THANK YOU LOTS :)

    Reply

  43. November 22, 2009 at 4:03 pm, Anonymous said:

    thanx man this was amzing info really thanx

    Reply

  44. December 03, 2009 at 2:42 am, rR0xxx said:

    it works…thnks

    Reply

  45. December 13, 2009 at 10:27 pm, sad Panda said:

    I followed your instructions…this is what notepad presented ܲܰ Ü Ü
    ÜÛß ß²Ü ÞÛÛÜÜ ÛÛÜÜ
    ßÛÛܲ²ß ²ÛÛÛ²ÛÜ ßÛÛ²²ÜÜ
    ÛÜ° ²ÜÛÛÛܲ þÜ ±ÛÛÛÛÝ ²ÛÛÛÛ °
    ÛÛ²²ÜÜ °²ÛÛÛÛ ÞÛÜ °ÛÛÛÛ ²ÛÛÛÛÛÛÛÛ²±±° °²
    ÛÛÛÛ²° Üþ ²ÛßÛÛ Ü²²ÛÝÛÛ²Û² ÛÛÛÛÛ
    and then some :(

    Reply

  46. January 20, 2010 at 4:28 am, night01 said:

    thanks. Now i know. :)

    Reply

  47. January 25, 2010 at 8:23 pm, Lori said:

    What if it says the file is too large and I need to use another text editor? Any you’d suggest?

    Reply

    • February 11, 2010 at 6:06 pm, Anonymous said:

      didnt work. got a bunch of letters

      Reply

  48. March 08, 2010 at 5:51 am, Merovingian said:

    A handy use for the now seldom used .nfo file extension is to save your user|pass lists for sites etc… as a BlackBook.nfo to a SDcard that you don’t leave on your laptop. Just pop the SDcard in and use your handy dandy text editor to open ‘er up and access your passes once you’re done pop the SDcard back out and store it away from your laptop until needed again. For heavier security, encrypt your SDcard with Trucrypt volume(s).
    Since .nfo’s appear “invisible” on most sytems its a nifty way to hide your .txt files and affords a small measure of privacy you can always use your text editor to view it as Open/All files (*.*)

    Reply

  49. March 30, 2010 at 4:07 pm, chatchitto said:

    Great advice thank you don’t have to install .nfo viewers like damn nfo viewer

    Reply

  50. April 10, 2010 at 10:08 pm, Anonymous said:

    i does not work in vista, jus a bunch of letters

    Reply

  51. May 09, 2010 at 12:33 pm, Anonymous said:

    perfect answer. Thanks.

    Reply

  52. June 09, 2010 at 4:41 am, jAY said:

    thanks

    Reply

  53. June 13, 2010 at 1:59 pm, Jdmrexx said:

    yah i open it with notepad and all it says is cd keys and “enjoy” at the bottom. can someone help?

    Reply

  54. July 11, 2010 at 11:56 am, Rony1xyz said:

    Thank you very much for the information. I will try to do that now. Rony

    Reply

  55. July 29, 2010 at 5:56 pm, Salim said:

    great thanks for help thank u muuuuuuuhhh

    Reply

  56. August 08, 2010 at 7:09 am, Khankamru said:

    superb just superb thnxxxx

    Reply

  57. August 11, 2010 at 10:15 am, Gaygirlie said:

    Thank you lol!

    Reply

  58. September 04, 2010 at 4:20 am, U2avishek said:

    Hi,
    It really helped me. Thank you and keep going……..

    Reply

  59. September 06, 2010 at 4:51 am, Evans said:

    I want to make sweet love with you. (jks) thx so much.

    Reply

  60. September 10, 2010 at 11:25 am, Kakashka said:

    Yes, but somtimes the format of the .nfo wont go with notepad. Is there any good software to open it the way it should be showed?

    Reply

  61. October 03, 2010 at 8:51 pm, Abced said:

    thanks. helped me alot!

    Reply

  62. October 11, 2010 at 4:02 pm, Manishlink88 said:

    Thanks nice information.
    Nice team work

    Reply

  63. October 19, 2010 at 11:08 am, Munkee_balls said:

    Thanks alot for the information. I too thought it was a corrupt file i had d/l’ed.

    Reply

  64. October 21, 2010 at 6:32 am, thewatcher said:

    great piece of info!

    Reply

  65. October 30, 2010 at 1:08 am, paul said:

    Cheers for that. Any idea why i’d need this info if file already extracted? I have had some with info explaining contents of files and i’ve had some that are just line after line of nmbrs ltrs and symbl, i keep wondering what am i missing, other than a brain

    Reply

  66. October 30, 2010 at 1:16 am, paul said:

    Penny dropped lol i scrolled down and found full descript. Cheers

    Reply

  67. November 02, 2010 at 1:14 pm, Grateful said:

    Thanks, helped a bunch.

    Reply

  68. November 22, 2010 at 3:14 am, Caca said:

    yup thx

    Reply

  69. December 05, 2010 at 3:17 am, Anwari Naim Azran said:

    Thanks.Its very useful.

    Reply

  70. December 12, 2010 at 11:00 am, Narry90 said:

    good thxxxxxx

    Reply

  71. December 26, 2010 at 7:59 am, Akhil said:

    that was a good nfo thankz

    Reply

  72. January 14, 2011 at 9:29 pm, Mr.L. said:

    im clueless

    Reply

  73. January 26, 2011 at 10:53 am, Midgetgadget said:

    Very useful… actually i had a lot of problems with this format!! Thanks :D

    Reply

  74. April 14, 2011 at 5:38 am, sushil said:

    hooks_rapper011@yahoo.com:-
    The file directory C:windowssystemL.G is currupt and unreadable computer says please run the chkdsk utility what to do for my computer on appering this information with black screen.

    Reply

  75. June 14, 2012 at 10:53 am, cassandra said:

    this is really helpful thank you so much.

    Reply

  76. November 11, 2012 at 11:29 pm, emily said:

    When I click ‘Open With’ it says “Windows cannot access the specified device etc etc” What do I do?

    Reply

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