What Is a DSK File?

Some DSK files are disk images, but others are completely unrelated

What to Know

  • A DSK file is either a disk image, project file, or database file.
  • Open one with PowerISO, Delphi, or Simple IDs, respectively.
  • Those same programs might be able to convert the file.

This article explains the various file formats that use the DSK file extension, including how to open and convert each kind.

What Is a DSK File?

A file with the DSK file extension could be a disk image file created by various programs for storing images of disks for backup purposes.

Some files that end in .DSK could instead be Borland project desktop files that store project-related files and references used by the Delphi IDE or other programming software.

If your DSK file isn't in either of those formats, it's most likely a Simple IDs database file that stores ID cards.

DSK files in Windows 10 that open with PowerISO

The letters "dsk" are often used as an abbreviation for "disk," meaning hard disk drive, so it's also used in some computer commands like chkdsk (check disk). That command and others like it, however, having nothing to do with the DSK files mentioned on this page.

How to Open a DSK File

Disk image files may be able to be opened with Partition Doctor, WinImage, PowerISO, or R-Studio. Macs provide built-in support for DSK files with the Disk Utility tool.

It's unlikely that all DSK files can be opened with each of these programs. It's best to use the same program that created your file to open it again.

Some DSK files might just be ZIP archives that use the .DSK file extension. If that's the case, you can open one with an archive decompressor like 7-Zip or PeaZip.

Borland project desktop files can be opened using Embarcadero's Delphi software (previously known as Borland Delphi before Embarcadero purchased the company in 2008).

Simple IDs database files store ID cards used by DSKE's ID card creator program called Simple IDs. We don't have a download link for it, but that is the program you need to open this kind of DSK file.

If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the file but it's the wrong application, or you'd rather have another installed program open it, see our guide on how to change the program that opens a specific file extension to learn how to make that change in Windows.

How to Convert a DSK File

MagicISO or one of the other openers from above might be able to convert a DSK image file to a different image file format like ISO or IMG. 

If your file is in a regular archive format like ZIP, and you want to convert one of the files inside the archive, first extract all the contents so that you have access to the actual data that's stored inside. Then, you can run one of those files through a file converter.

DSK files that are used by the Delphi program might be able to be converted to another format if you look for the option in the menu. Usually, a program like Delphi should support conversions via the File > Save As menu or some sort of Export or Convert button.

Simple IDs databases can only open with Simple IDs, so if you happen to have access to that program, look in a similar menu to find the conversion option, if one exists.

Still Can't Open the File?

If your file doesn't open at this point, double-check the file extension. You might be confusing another file extension for this one, meaning that you could be confusing another format for this one, which is why the file won't open in the programs mentioned above.

For example, DockX skin files use the DSKIN file extension, which looks pretty similar to DSK, but you actually need a completely different program to open those files, specifically DockX. A similar one is SKD, which is reserved for skin data files used by the Max Payne game.

Other examples could be given here, too, like settings files that use the DKS extension. Regardless of the file's suffix, you'll need to do some research to see what program you need to open or convert it.

Was this page helpful?