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Thread: Mac file on PC

  1. #1
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    Mac file on PC

    Unlike Windows, the MacOS appears to hid things from the user. A friend sent me an old file from his Mac with hopes that I could read the data. He doesn't remember what program was used to create it many years ago.

    Does anyone know how I can determine the type of this file, hopefully a drawing of a curve. In looking at the binary data in hex and ascii I recognize numerous elements but nothing to tell me what type of file it is. I have tried adding numerous Win extensions but with no success.

    Is there perhaps an analysis program, perhaps online, that could help?

    We want to machine some wood to match an existing stainless steel curve

    JKJ

  2. #2
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    CorelDraw, Adobe Illustrator, or DXF would be the usual suspects.
    You might want to post this up over in the laser/engraver and CNC forums.
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  3. #3
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    Turn on "show all file extensions" in Finder and see what it shows for those file(s)
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    Thanks. I've tried those extensions. I'll ask - I think my friend has already tried showing extensions on his Mac and other things suggested on the Wonderfully Wide InterWeb but no joy so far.

    Many years ago he had a stainless steel countertop made for his kitchen and now wants to construct a 3" wide/2" thick maple band around the perimeter. The top has curves and angles. If we can't read what he things is a vector file I think we can make a big tracing and digitize it for the CNC or make a router template.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by John K Jordan View Post
    Unlike Windows, the MacOS appears to hid things from the user. A friend sent me an old file from his Mac with hopes that I could read the data. He doesn't remember what program was used to create it many years ago.

    Does anyone know how I can determine the type of this file, hopefully a drawing of a curve. In looking at the binary data in hex and ascii I recognize numerous elements but nothing to tell me what type of file it is. I have tried adding numerous Win extensions but with no success.

    Is there perhaps an analysis program, perhaps online, that could help?

    We want to machine some wood to match an existing stainless steel curve

    JKJ

    Historically on Unix-based OSes, the first "N" bytes of a file are used to determine what kind of file you are dealing with (with "N" not being a consistent value from file type to file type). And there's a handy-dandy program called "file" that can be used to help determine that exact info. If possible, see if your friend can run the "file" command on the file in question. If not, go back and open the file again in a hex editor and look at the first 10 bytes or so; you might be able to use those to narrow your search online.
    And there was trouble, taking place...

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    Unlike Windows, the MacOS appears to hid things from the user. A friend sent me an old file from his Mac with hopes that I could read the data. He doesn't remember what program was used to create it many years ago.
    Any way of knowing how many years ago? If it was pre-OS X it may not translate to today's applications. Many of my files from back then are not currently readable.

    jtk
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  7. #7
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    Jim makes a good point...if it's old-old Mac, those applications were history long ago.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Wurster View Post
    Historically on Unix-based OSes, the first "N" bytes of a file are used to determine what kind of file you are dealing with (with "N" not being a consistent value from file type to file type). And there's a handy-dandy program called "file" that can be used to help determine that exact info. If possible, see if your friend can run the "file" command on the file in question. If not, go back and open the file again in a hex editor and look at the first 10 bytes or so; you might be able to use those to narrow your search online.
    The first 10 (and more) bytes don't give me a clue, at least in ASCII: 00 AB CD E0 00 00 00 03 00 00

    ASCII characters in the file include the location on his disk drive, info on dimensions, line widths, layers, views (L, R, T, etc), grid spacing, alignments, tolerances, chamfer info, more. I've tried the most common file types in an online Autodesk reader. I'll ask my friend if he can remember any more information and ask him to investigate further. Thanks.

    JKJ

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    Quote Originally Posted by John K Jordan View Post
    The first 10 (and more) bytes don't give me a clue, at least in ASCII: 00 AB CD E0 00 00 00 03 00 00

    ASCII characters in the file include the location on his disk drive, info on dimensions, line widths, layers, views (L, R, T, etc), grid spacing, alignments, tolerances, chamfer info, more. I've tried the most common file types in an online Autodesk reader. I'll ask my friend if he can remember any more information and ask him to investigate further. Thanks.

    JKJ
    It's a VLM file: https://filext.com/file-extension/VLM
    And there was trouble, taking place...

  10. #10
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    Very limited list of applications that can open those files and most are from the Velum folks. They do at least have a viewer according to that link.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Wurster View Post
    Thanks! Iíve passed this on to my friend.

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