.TEX File Extension

2 file types use the .tex file extension.
File Type 1

LaTeX Source Document

Developer Donald Knuth
3.7  |  122 Votes
Category Text Files
Format Text

What is a TEX file?

A TEX file is a source document prepared by LaTeX, a high-quality typesetting system. It may include text, symbols, mathematical expressions, and graphics. Academic and professional users in computer science, electrical engineering, statistics, economics, and physics often utilize TEX files when typesetting articles, books, and other publications.

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Screenshot of a .tex file in TeXworks 0.6.6
TEX file open in TeXworks 0.6.6

LaTeX documents, such as TEX files, contain plain text with tags and other LaTeX syntax that define the document's structure, such as a letter, book, or article. This formatting differs from the inline text formatting utilized in word processor documents like .DOCX and .ODT files.

Common word processors, such as Microsoft Word, OpenOffice Writer, and Corel WordPerfect, are often referred to as WYSIWYG programs. These word processors enable you to see how your text appears as you create it.

LaTeX applications, such as TeXworks and Texmaker, may be referred to as "WYSIWYM," which stands for "what you see is what you mean." Instead of seeing the text formatted in the document, a LaTeX processing system handles the visual formatting based on the tags and other LaTeX syntax defining the document's structure. Therefore, a LaTeX document may look different depending on the LaTeX application used to display the file.

NOTE: TEX files may also be saved with the .ltx (.LTX file) or .latex (.LATEX file) extension.

How to open a TEX file

You can open TEX files with various LaTeX applications, such as TeXworks (multiplatform), MiKTeX (multiplatform), and Texmaker (multiplatform).

Since TEX files store documents in plain text, you can also open and edit the files with a text editor, such as Microsoft Notepad (bundled with Windows) or Apple TextEdit (bundled with macOS). However, these text editors do not provide helpful LaTeX syntax highlighting features available with LaTeX applications.

How to convert a TEX file

Several applications, including TeXworks, LyX/Mac, and LaTeX Editor, can convert TEX files to other formats.

For example, select File → Save As... in TeXworks to convert TEX files to one of the following formats:

  • .LTX - LaTeX Document
  • .BIB - BibTeX Bibliography Database
  • .STY - LaTeX Style
  • .CLS - LaTeX Document Class File
  • .BLG - BibTeX Log File
  • .BBL - BibTeX Generated Bibliography File
  • .TXT - Plain Text
  • .PDF - Portable Document Format
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Programs that open TEX files

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Updated June 23, 2022
File Type 2

Texture File

Developer N/A
3.3  |  29 Votes
Category Raster Image Files
Format Binary

What is a TEX file?

Bitmap image used for storing textures; can create the appearance of different surfaces and can be applied to both 2D and 3D objects; often used in video games (such as first person shooters) that support 3D texture-mapping.

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Example video games that use TEX files include Avalon Heroes (which actually uses the .DDS format for its TEX files), Serious Sam, and Dead Rising 2. To open the TEX files used by Dead Rising 2, first rename them to have the ".big" extension, and then open them with Gibbed's DeadRising2 Tools.

TEX files can be opened by some programs that reference textures or use texture-mapping. They may possibly be opened with a generic image editor.

Programs that open TEX files

Updated August 6, 2012

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