LNK File Extension

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

What is the .LNK file type?

The .lnk extension associates with the Shell Link binary format in Microsoft Windows. A link file is a small (~2 Kb) file used as a pointer or shortcut to another file or directory in the filesystem.

A Windows .lnk file stores certain metadata about the pointed-to file, e.g. creation and last modification date and time, date and time of last access etc. LNK files are used to reference only filesystem resources (other files and directories), while .url shortcuts are used to point to Internet resources.

A .lnk file cannot be viewed in a text editor and when activated is processed directly by the Windows shell. A double-click on a .lnk file would mean the same as if the double-click were made on the target file or directory. A .lnk file itself does not contain any user data, it is just a shortcut.

Windows conceals extensions of registered file types by defaults, which can pose a serious security risk especially with .lnk files (consider double-extension files like 'filename.txt.lnk' shown as 'filename.txt').

Software to open or convert LNK files

You can open LNK files with the following programs: 

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