.5 File Extension

Unix Section 5 Manual Page

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What is a 5 file?

A 5 file contains a Unix system-level manual page (man page) that likely documents a file format or convention. It is named for the format or convention it documents. You can access 5 files using the man utility.

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Screenshot of a .5 file in Microsoft Visual Studio Code
5 file open in Microsoft Visual Studio Code

Unix-like OSes include a system manual that is divided into eight numbered sections. This manual's fifth section usually describes the file formats the system supports. Each supported format is documented in a separate 5 file.

For example, the file deb.5 describes the .DEB file format. It also provides a list of additional related entries.

In some Unix systems, such as System V, 5 files instead contain documentation of miscellaneous system information. These 5 files can still be accessed using the man utility.

NOTE: Other sections' Unix man pages use the .1, .2, .3, .4, .6, .7, and .8 extensions. Man pages are also commonly compressed into .GZ files (which may use the .gz.# extension).

How to open a 5 file

In Unix-like OSes, you can open a 5 file by calling the man utility using the name of the file. For example, to open deb.5, enter man deb(5).

Since 5 files are plain text files, you can also open them in any text editor, such as Vim (Linux, Mac), Microsoft Notepad (Windows), and Apple TextEdit (Mac).

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Programs that open 5 files

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Updated February 24, 2022

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