.WARC File Extension

Web Archive

Developer International Internet Preservation Consortium
3.7  |  3 Votes

What is a WARC file?

A WARC file is a web archive, which contains website content saved for archival purposes. Various web archiving programs, such as GNU Wget, use crawlers to retrieve web content and store it in WARC files. WARC files may include HTML data, stylesheets, scripts, images, and other webpage elements.

More Information

Screenshot of a .warc file in Webrecorder Player
WARC file open in Webrecorder Player

The Web ARChive, or WARC, format is an extension of the Internet Archive .ARC format. The primary difference between WARC and ARC files is that WARC files can include metadata about when and how the data they contain was archived (e.g., what program created the archive).

WARC is the standard format in which internet archivists save archived webpages. However, you may encounter web archives saved in other formats, including the ARC and .WACZ formats.

NOTE: WARC files compressed with gzip compression use the .warc.gz extension.

How to open a WARC file

You can open a WARC file with Webrecorder Player (multiplatform) or Webrecorder ReplayWeb.page (Web). Doing so will allow you to view the archived content the WARC file contains.

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Programs that open WARC files

Category: Web Files
Updated: December 12, 2023

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