1. Technology

Native File Format

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Definition:

The native file format is the default file format used by a specific software application. The native file format of an application is proprietary and these types of files are not meant to be transferred to other applications.

Usually special software-specific image properties can only be retained when an image is saved in the software's native format. For example, layer styles and text in Photoshop will only remain editable when it the image is saved in the native Photoshop (PSD) format. Lens effects and PowerClips in CorelDRAW can only be edited when the document is saved in native CorelDRAW (CDR) format. Below are a few of the major graphics applications and their native file formats:

  • CDR - CorelDRAW
  • CPP - Corel Photo-Paint
  • PSD - Adobe Photoshop
  • PDD - Adobe PhotoDeluxe
  • AI - Adobe Illustrator
  • UFO - Ulead PhotoImpact
  • PSP - Paint Shop Pro
  • MIX - Microsoft PictureIt and PhotoDraw

When an image is being sent to another application it should be converted or exported to a standard image format. The exception would be if you are transferring an image between applications from the same publisher. For example, you should have no problem sending Adobe Illustrator files to Adobe Photoshop, or Corel Photo-Paint files to CorelDRAW. Also keep in mind that you usually cannot use an earlier version of a program to open files saved from a later version of the same software. In most cases, you'll loose image properties that are specific to the later version.

Graphics Glossary

Also Known As: default file format, proprietary format

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