Software & Apps File Types How to Open, Edit, & Convert XCF Files Share Pin Email Print File Types Design Cryptocurrency MS Office Windows Linux Google Drive Apps File Types Backup & Utilities View More By Tim Fisher General Manager, VP, Lifewire.com Tim Fisher has 30+ years' professional technology support experience. He writes troubleshooting content and is the General Manager of Lifewire. our editorial process Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Tim Fisher Updated October 21, 2019 25 25 people found this article helpful A file with the XCF file extension is a GIMP Image file. The abbreviation stands for eXperimental Computing Facility. Much like PSD files used in Adobe Photoshop, GIMP uses XCF files to store layers, transparency settings, paths, and other information associated with one or more photos that are a part of the same project. When the XCF file is opened in a compatible image editor, all those settings are accessible again so that you can edit the layers, images, etc. How to Open an XCF File XCF files, if it's not obvious already, are best opened by GIMP, the very popular (and free) image editing tool. XCF files created from any version of GIMP can be opened with the latest version. IrfanView, XnView, Inkscape, Paint.NET, CinePaint, digiKam, Krita, and several other image editors/viewers also work with XCF files. Are none of these programs opening your file? You may be confusing a CVX, XCU (OpenOffice.org Configuration), CXF, CFXR (Cocoa Sfxr), or XFDF file with an XCF file. Even though some of those files share a couple of the same letters in the file extension, none of them open with GIMP like XCF files do. If you find that an application on your PC does try to open the XCF file but it's the wrong application or if you would rather have another installed program open XCF files, see our How to Change the Default Program for a Specific File Extension guide for making that change in Windows. How to Convert an XCF File GIMP saves files to the XCF format by default, but you can use the Files > Export menu to save it to another format like JPG or PNG. You can also use a free image file converter like Zamzar to convert XCF to PDF, GIF, AI, TGA, WEBP, TIFF, and other similar file formats. ConvertImage.net is a similar website that supports the conversion of XCF to PSD.