.CBOR File Extension

Concise Binary Object Representation

Developer Carsten Bormann
3.0  |  1 Vote

What is a CBOR file?

A CBOR file is a data file saved in the Concise Binary Object Representation format. CBOR files are similar to .JSON files, in that they contain sets of name-value pairs. However, while JSON files are plain text files (and contain human-readable data), CBOR files are binary files (and do not contain human-readable data).

More Information

Carsten Bormann created the CBOR format to provide a compact alternative to JSON. The format was further defined and formalized in the Internet Engineering Task Force's Request for Comments 8949, published in December 2020.

Just like JSON files, CBOR files are most often used to exchange information among computers, servers, and other devices (especially Internet of Things devices). Because CBOR files are saved in a more-concise, binary format, devices can process CBOR files more quickly than they can process JSON files. The tradeoff, however, is that users cannot easily open CBOR files and examine the data they contain.

How to open a CBOR file

You can use various CBOR implementations to decode a CBOR file to a plain text format. After doing so, you can view the data your CBOR file contains. A list of common CBOR implementations is maintained here.

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Programs that open or reference CBOR files

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