How to Open a .dat File
1. Try opening the .dat file with Microsoft Excel.
2. Try opening a .dat file using gmail
3. Try opening a .dat file using Microsoft Word?
If none of those programs work, please read the following to learn more about other steps you can take.
What is a .dat File?
A .dat file could be anything…If you don’t know what software created it then your best bet is to open it in a hex editor and see if there’s any information that would indicate what kind of file it is.
.DAT File Extensions Explanation:
INDEX.DAT is a secret index of the Web sites you have visited and the E-mail address you mail too. They don’t get deleted when you use Windows to clean out temporary Internet files and so is generally available for investigative work even if you think you have cleaned out your browsing history.
INDEX.DAT are generally hidden by Windows so you might only accidentally stumble across it. The file itself is generally not hidden under Windows XP but the directories they are in are often marked both hidden and belong to the system and generally don’t show up in an Explorer window even if you have “Show hidden files and folders” checked and “Hide protected operating system files” unchecked in your system preferences. A search for that file name can find the files in Windows XP but you have to tell the search to specifically look in hidden and system folders. So, you may or may not come across these INDEX.DAT files in your exploration of the hard disk.
“There can many different types of .dat files, the best option yet, is to download and install a recommended file extension utility that will replace, remove or restore the type of .dal file your having issues with!”