Browse Definitions:
Definition

binary file

Contributor(s): Ryan Speirs

A binary file is a file whose content must be interpreted by a program or a hardware processor that understands in advance exactly how it is formatted. That is, the file is not in any externally identifiable format so that any program that wanted to could look for certain data at a certain place within the file. A progam (or hardware processor) has to know exactly how the data inside the file is laid out to make use of the file.

In general, executable (ready-to-run) programs are often identified as binary files and given a file name extension of ".bin". Programmers often talk about an executable program as a "binary" and will ask another programmer to "send me the binaries." (A synonym for this usage is object code .) A binary file could also contain data ready to be used by a program.

In terms of transmitting files from one place to another, a file can be transmitted as a "binary," meaning that the programs handling it don't attempt to look within it or change it, but just pass it along as a "chunk of 0s and 1s," the meaning of which is unknown to any network device.

This was last updated in April 2005

Join the conversation

2 comments

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

The BIN file extension is employed by a number of programs that range from image disk programs to data storage. The most typical definition of the file extension BIN is associated to Nero Burning ROM, a disk imaging software application. For technically detailed information please refer to http://www.file-extension.com/files/BIN/
Cancel
Cash On My Top Secret Profit Formula and Quickly Secure Weekly Profits Of $50000. Watch the video here: http://tinyurl.com/qeurad9 . Hurry up!
Cancel

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

SearchSecurity

  • password

    A password is an unspaced sequence of characters used to determine that a computer user requesting access to a computer system is...

  • adware

    Adware is any software application in which advertising banners are displayed while a program is running.

  • botnet

    A botnet is a collection of internet-connected devices, which may include PCs, servers, mobile devices and internet of things ...

SearchHealthIT

SearchDisasterRecovery

  • call tree

    A call tree -- sometimes referred to as a phone tree -- is a telecommunications chain for notifying specific individuals of an ...

  • mass notification system (MNS)

    A mass notification system is a platform that sends one-way messages to inform employees and the public of an emergency.

  • disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS)

    One approach to a strong disaster recovery plan is DRaaS, where companies offload data replication and restoration ...

SearchStorage

  • data migration

    Data migration is the process of transferring data between data storage systems, data formats or computer systems.

  • compact disc (CD)

    A compact disc is a portable storage medium that can be used for recording, storing and playing back audio, video and other data ...

  • secondary storage

    Secondary storage is used to protect inactive data written from a primary storage array to a nonvolatile tier of disk, flash or ...

SearchSolidStateStorage

  • SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID)

    SSD RAID (solid-state drive RAID) is a methodology commonly used to protect data by distributing redundant data blocks across ...

  • Tier 0

    Tier 0 (tier zero) is a level of data storage that is faster, and perhaps more expensive, than any other level in the storage ...

  • PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive)

    A PCIe SSD (PCIe solid-state drive) is a high-speed expansion card that attaches a computer to its peripherals.

SearchCloudStorage

  • RESTful API

    A RESTful application program interface breaks down a transaction to create a series of small modules, each of which addresses an...

  • cloud storage infrastructure

    Cloud storage infrastructure is the hardware and software framework that supports the computing requirements of a private or ...

  • Zadara VPSA and ZIOS

    Zadara Storage provides block, file or object storage with varying levels of compute and capacity through its ZIOS and VPSA ...

Close