What Is a DAR File?

Your DAR file could be an archive of a physical disk

What to Know

  • Some DAR files are archives of a disk or other files. Open one with DAR (Disk ARchive).
  • DVD Architect uses DAR files, too, but for project files.

This article explains what a DAR file is and how to open or convert one on your computer.

What Is a DAR File?

A file with the DAR file extension is a disk archive. Developed to replace TAR, this file serves as a full copy of a group of files and can, therefore, be used to create file backups. It uses Disk ARchive compression.

DVD Architect uses DAR files, too, for storing everything related to a DVD authoring project, like the location of the media files, chapters that should be included in the DVD, and more.

several DAR files in Windows 10 that open with SONY DVD Architect

DAR also stands for some other technology terms that are unrelated to a file format, such as direct access restore, double address rate, data acquisition request, and dual analog route.

How to Open a DAR File

If it's an archive, open it with DAR (Disk ARchive). Another program that should work is KDar.

If your file is related to a DVD project, use Sony's DVD Architect.

How to Convert a DAR File

There probably aren't many file converters, if any, that can convert a DAR archive. Even if you do have such a tool, much like ZIP, RAR, and similar formats, you can't convert one to anything but another archive format.

For example, even if inside the DAR file is a video like an MP4 that you want to convert to AVI, you can't do so directly. You need to first extract the contents out of the archive and then convert one of those files to a compatible format (like MP4 to AVI, MP3 to WAV, etc.).

DAR files used with DVD Architect are used by the program to reference other data and describe how the authoring process should work. There aren't any actual files stored inside, so it'd be useless to convert one to any format other than a text-based format like TXT.

If you need to "convert" the DAR file to a DVD to actually make the DVD use the information stored in the file, first open the DAR file in DVD Architect and then go to File > Make DVD to walk through the process of preparing the DVD files and burning them to the disc.

Still Can't Open the File?

The first thing you should check for if you can't open the file is that the file extension really does read ".DAR" and not something that just looks similar. Because so many file extensions use many of the same letter combinations, it can be easy to confuse them with one another and think that one is a DAR file.

For example, the DAT and DAA file extensions are very similar to this file extension, but if you follow those links you'll see that these formats are not at all related and can't be used with the same programs.

Similarly, the DART file extension is just one letter off of DAR, but it's used for Dart source code files, a format that's entirely foreign to the Disk Archive and DVD Architect file formats.

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