Windows Metafile

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File Format
Name Windows Metafile
Ontology
Extension(s) .wmf, .wmz, .apm
MIME Type(s) image/wmf
PRONOM x-fmt/119
Kaitai Struct Spec wmf.ksy
Released 1990
For EMF, see Enhanced Metafile.

Windows Metafile (WMF) is a vector graphics format native to Microsoft Windows 3.x. It stores a list of commands which, when executed, generate an image.

The term Windows Metafile usually refers specifically to WMF format, though it can also be an umbrella term that includes the successor format, Enhanced Metafile (EMF).

The .wmz extension reportedly indicates a ZIP-compressed WMF file, but the only .wmz files we've seen are actually gzip-compressed.

Most WMF files begin with a 22-byte "Aldus Placeable Metafile" header, which supplies suggested placement and scaling information. Some (mainly older) WMF files lack this header.

Contents

Identification

WMF data (usually?) begins with the byte sequence 01 00 09 00 or 02 00 09 00. This sequence may appear at the beginning of a WMF file, but it is usually at offset 22, and the file begins with the Aldus Placeable Metafile signature of D7 CD C6 9A.

Specifications

Software

Sample files

See also

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