What is a .BIL File And How To Open It – ESRI (Easy Guide)

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Have you downloaded a file with .bil extension, but you are not sure what it is? It is possible that you know what the file does, but you are unsure on how to open it. Fear not, in this article we will show you how to easily open the .bil file in few simple steps on various systems.

What is a .BIL file?

The file extension .BIL comes from ESRI BIL File. This file extension belongs to the developer ESRI. The file is a GIS software file.

What to know

There are currently 2 software that can open the .bil file on 1 platform.

How to open a .BIL file?

Below we have written a comprehensive guide on how to open the .BIL file on various operating systems.

How to open a .BIL file on Windows (7, 8, 10)

The .bil file can be opened in 4 steps on Windows.

1. In the first step you need to download the GDAL software. You will be using this software in order to open the file. You can also use Blue Marble Geographics Global Mapper and GDAL software.

Step 2

Step 2: Locating your .BIL file

2. In the second step you need to locate the downloaded file. If you don’t remember where you have downloaded your file to, you should check your /download/ folder as it usually gets automatically saved there.

Step 3

Step 3: Choose “Open with”

3. In the third step right click on your file and choose “Open with”.

Step 4

Step 4: Choose the software and click ok

4. After choosing the “Open with” option, you will have an option to choose the GDAL software you have downloaded. Choose your software and click on “OK”. Congratulations! You have opened your file on Windows.

Still cannot open the .BIL file?

If you are still unable to open the .BIL file, it might be because you are trying to open the wrong one. The .BIL file extension is similar to other file extensions such as: .bim – Bytessence, .bimx – GRAPHISOFT, .bin – Generic Binary File, .bin – Research in Motion, .bin – PCSX. You might be trying to open the wrong file, please recheck if you are trying to open the right file extension again.


In this article you have learned how to open the .BIL file with the GDAL, Blue Marble Geographics Global Mapper programs on Windows.