Opening URL files

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

What is the .URL file type?

Derived from the standard Uniform Resource Locator abbreviation (URL), the .url filename extension stands for the Internet Shortcut (.url) file type. The Internet Shortcut feature is part of all Microsoft Windows operating systems, allowing to create quick Internet links on the desktop or in any folder.

The .url file is a Microsoft Windows Internet shortcut. Unlike filesystem shortcuts (.lnk), it is a text-based file that can point to any Internet or other resource by providing its full URL link. The link address can be changed at any time through the right-click Properties dialog. When activated, the .url file causes the appropriate protocol handler (for regular URL's, the default web browser) to follow the link provided in the file. Besides HTTP ('http://'), other protocols can be used. For instance, via the 'file:///' prefix a shortcut can point to a local or remote file.

In other OS'es, .url files are not recognized as Internet shortcuts and either fail to open or get displayed as text files. By opening the .url file in a text editor, one can easily extract the URL it points to.

Software to open or convert URL files

You can open URL files with the following programs: 

Popular formats