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EMF File Format

Enhanced Windows Metafile

EMF is a file extension for Enhanced MetaFile, a spool file format used in printing by the Windows operating system.

When a print job is sent to the printer, if it is already printing another file, the computer reads the new file and stores it, usually on the hard disk or in memory, for printing at a later time. EMF files may be created and reside in memory or disk space when windows caches them while waiting on another printing job. Spooling allows multiple print jobs to be given to the printer at one time.

EMF is a 32 bit replacement for the original windows metafile (WMF) format, addressing its deficiencies in printing in comparison to more sophisticated graphics programs. Due its smaller size, EMF is a good alternative to the RAW format, which is raw postscript, when printing across a network.

The EMF format is device-independent, so the dimensions of a graphic are maintained on the printed copy regardless of the resolution in dots per inch of the printer.

MIME type: application/emf, application/x-emf, image/x-emf, image/x-mgx-emf, image/x-xbitmap


Learn more about EMF files:

Learn more about EMF files on the MSDN webpage.

Ask EMF related questions in the IT Knowledge Exchange community.

This was last updated in July 2010
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