Opening NTF files

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

What is the .NTF file type?

The primary association of the .ntf extension is with the National Imagery Transmission Format Standard (NITFS) and the related NTF file type. NITFS was developed and adopted by the US Department of Defense (DoD) as the default format for interchange of image data between systems, with NTF files as containers.

NITFS is a container format, and an .ntf file is a layered package that can hold one or more raster images along with vector, text or other data as layers (overlay). NTF container files also include metadata. Support of NTF images can be added via specialized NTF-enabling plugins, available both freely and commercially.

Differently, the .ntf extension is also associated with the MediaFACE II Document file type (NTF). MediaFace II is an earlier commercial label design software product by NEATO.

MediaFACE document .ntf files are project-type files, using a proprietary binary format to store all project-related data (incl. images) in a single file. Such NTF files can be opened by MediaFace II and imported into newer MediaFace versions (4/5).

The .ntf extension is also bound up with the former National Transfer Format (NTF) later adopted as BS 7567 "Electronic transfer of geographic information," a UK national standard. The NTF format is used to store and exchange geospatial data with five complexity levels (Level 1-5).

One .ntf file normally represents a certain tile of a larger map, and can be opened with most GIS (Geographical Information System) applications and standalone viewers like OSview. NTF support is added via plugins or add-ons. Digimap, a large-scale UK-based GIS resource, offers export of their Ordnance Survey data into NTF.

Alternatively, the .ntf extension is linked to the IBM Lotus Database Template format and the respective file type (NTF). A database template .ntf file contains basic skeletal structures for a new IBM Lotus database. By default, NTF files are saved in the 'older' template format also known as "R4 ODS 20" to minimize the template file size.

Software to open or convert NTF files

You can open NTF files with the following programs: 

Popular formats