Opening BIF files

Have a problem opening a .BIF file? We collect information about file formats and can explain what BIF files are. Additionally we recommend software suitable for opening or converting such files.

What is the .BIF file type?

The primary association of the .bif filename extension belongs to the MagicISO Boot Image File (.bif) file format and type. MagicISO is a paid CD/DVD authoring and imaging tool from MagicISO Inc., with BIF a proprietary format for MagicISO boot images.

The .bif file is a MagicISO boot image. Often containing just bootsector copies, such boot images (.bif) allow to add boot capability to CD/DVD disks authored with MagicISO, or several other tools that support the BIF format (e.g., PowerISO). As boot images are not included in a MagicISO installation, the user has to make or provide appropriate .bif files. BIF boot images cannot be directly used with bootloaders such as isolinux, syslinux, and grub. Standard boot images use a different format and usually bear the extension .img.

The .bif extension also frequently occurs as it denotes the TomTom Information File (.bif) file type/format, with reference to the TomTom GPS navigation devices like TomTom GO 930 or XL/One. Text-based BIF files hold different sets of control information such as map activation status ("ttgo.bif"), user credentials for the TomTom portal ("tthome.bif"), or device and map settings ("ttnavigator.bif"). BIF files are a critical part of the TomTom software.

Another occurrence of the .bif extension relates to the Aurora/Infinity Engine Resource Archive (.bif) file format/type. BIF is a private binary archive format developed by BioWare Corp. for their Aurora and Infinity game engines for storing all kinds of game resource data, including character and object models, area maps, etc. BIF files are used in such games as Neverwinter Nights, The Baldur's Gate, Planescape: Torment, and others. The contents of every .bif file must be indexed in the master index file ("chitin.key" or other). Numerous unofficial tools exist for extracting/packaging data from/to .bif files, maintained by game communities for modding purposes.

Adding to the confusion, the .bif extension is also used for labeling Boot Information Files (.bif) employed by some bootloaders in certain GNU/Linux variants (e.g., Zynq in Parallela Linux). In that case, the .bif file is simply a short text file defining the layout of a boot image. Such .bif files serve as input for the "bootgen" boot image generation tool.

Another association of the .bif extension goes with the Base Index Frames (BIF) file format. A .bif file like this is an archive of indexed bitmap images arranged in correspondence to key frames of a video track. Such BIF files are used by streaming multimedia players such as Roku, Adobe Flash Player, and others, to provide convenient instant preview images during fast-forwarding or rewinding with the timeline slider.

In digitally-assisted anatomic pathology, the .bif extension denotes VENTANA microscope slides (.bif) obtained with a VENTANA microscope and viewed with a slide scanner (e.g., iScan Coreo). A proprietary format of Ventana Medical Systems, BIF uses the BigTIFF container for a stack of tiled images, XMP metadata, and stitching markers. Such .bif image files can be processed in the VENTANA Virtuoso software or imported in other imaging tools that may support the BIF format.

Quite specifically, the .bif extension also has an association with the Batch Input File (.bif) file type/format used by the Windows-based Gmoor32 ocean/sea vessel mooring system analysis software. The .bif file contains various input data that can be entered into Gmoor32 as a batch.

In the area of Windows CE software development, the .bif extension occurs with reference to build information files (.bif) that hold environment-specific parameters for a Windows CE programming project. Windows CE is Microsoft's legacy OS for mobile devices. Such BIF files are checked and, if necessary, created by the "Wince.bat" script. XML-based build information files (.bif) are also used in other, non-Windows CE development environments.

The .bif extension was also chosen to represent the Bayesian Interchange Format (BIF), proposed around 1996 as a standard way of describing Bayesian, or belief networks. Later, BIF was abandoned in favor of the new, XML-based XMLBIF format (.xmlbif).

Software to open or convert BIF files

You can open BIF files with the following programs:
PowerISO by Power Software Ltd
PowerISO by PowerISO Computing, Inc.
WinArchiver by Power Software Ltd
Banner Maker Pro
Banner Maker Pro by GatorData, Inc.

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