.SP3 File Extension

File Type 1

NGS SP3 File

Developer NOAA NGS
4.2  |  14 Votes
Category GIS Files
Format Text

What is an SP3 file?

File created in the National Geodetic Survey (NGS) Standard Product #3 (SP3) format; saved in a plain text ASCII format and contains satellite orbit information; used for tracking GPS satellite orbits, but also supports non-GPS orbits as well.

More Information

The original SP3 format, called SP3-a, was extended to include additional information in the SP3-b and SP3-c formats.

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Programs that open SP3 files

Updated April 30, 2012
File Type 2

Windows XP Service Pack 3 Update File

Developer Microsoft
3.9  |  20 Votes
Category Data Files
Format Binary

What is an SP3 file?

An SP3 file is a data file included in Windows XP Service Pack 3 (SP3). It contains fixes and enhancements that can be applied to a user's copy of Windows XP. SP3 files use the filenames WIN51IP.SP3 and WIN51IC.SP3, and they are similar to .SP and .SP2 files.

More Information

Before PCs and operating systems were regularly updated over the Internet, they were updated using physical CD-ROMs. Windows XP updates were stored on Windows XP Service Pack CDs. These CDs contained a number of files and folders, including a data file used to apply fixes and enhancements to a user's copy of Windows XP. On the Windows XP Service Pack 3 disc, that file was named WIN51IP.SP3 (Windows XP SP3 Professional Edition) or WIN51IC.SP3 (Windows XP SP3 Home Edition).

Microsoft released Windows XP Service Pack 3 on April 21, 2008. This final Windows XP Service Pack included features that had first been made available in Windows Vista, additional security improvements, and 1,174 bug fixes.

Common SP3 Filenames

WIN51IP.SP3 - Update file included in Windows XP Professional Edition Service Pack 3.

WIN51IC.SP3 - Update file included in Windows XP Home Edition Service Pack 3.

How to open an SP3 file

SP3 files are not meant to be opened. If you still possess a copy of Windows XP Service Pack 3, you can use the disc to apply the fixes and enhancements its SP3 file contains to Windows XP. To do so, insert the disc into your CD-ROM drive, browse to the disc in File Explorer, and double-click SETUP.EXE.

Programs that open or reference SP3 files

Updated February 23, 2021

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