Recommended file formats for long term data preservation

When preparing your files for long-term storage and access, the file formats you use will affect the accessibility your files at a later date. Using these file formats outlined below are recommended for storage purposes.

Considerations for file formats
Many file formats are proprietary or can only be opened by specific applications. To ensure your data is preserved for long-term use, it is recommended to save a copy of your file using sustainable file formats for your data files.

Click here for a list of free programs that will open any file extension.

Text format File extension
Acrobat PDF/A .pdf
Comma-Separated Values .csv
Open Office Formats .odt, .ods, .odp
Plain Text (US-ASCII, UTF-8) .txt
XML .xml
Image/Graphic Formats File extension
JPEG .jpg
JPEG2000 .jp2
PNG .png
SVG 1.1 (no java binding) .svg
TIFF .tif, .tiff
Audio Formats File extension
AIFF .aif, .aiff
WAVE .wav
Video Formats File extension
AVI (uncompressed) .avi
Motion JPEG2000 .mj2, .mjp2