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Back to Web Providers... DATA TYPES

The web operates in a simple client-server fashion: a web browser client requests an object, usually a file, from a web server. When the object is returned to the client information identifying how it should be handled is included. This is how the client knows, for example, that a stream of data should be interpreted as text or image or sound. The data type is indicated using a type and subtype. The type indicates the category, like text or image, and the subtype gives details of the format used, like GIF or JPEG.

The server identifies the data type contained in a file on the server system by the last part of the name. For example, a file containing a GIF image should be given a name ending with .gif. There are a number of common data types built-in to the server, like GIF, JPEG, and HTML, and we have added additional type definitions to support particular applications.

If you need a type that isn't supported you can add it yourself by creating a file called .htaccess in the directory with the file or files in question. Place a line in .htaccess like this:

   AddType  type/subtype  filesuffix


Type/Subtype Filename
application/mac-binhex40 hqx
application/mac-compactpro cpt
application/mbedlet mbd
application/msword doc
application/octet-stream bin dms lha lzh exe class
application/octet-stream sd2
application/oda oda
application/pdf pdf
application/postscript ai eps ps
application/powerpoint ppt
application/rtf rtf
application/x-authorware-bin aab
application/x-authorware-map aam
application/x-authorware-seg aas
application/x-bcpio bcpio
application/x-cdlink vcd
application/x-compress Z
application/x-cpio cpio
application/x-csh csh
application/x-director dcr dir dxr
application/x-dvi dvi
application/x-excel xls
application/x-gtar gtar
application/x-gzip gz
application/x-hdf hdf
application/x-httpd-cgi cgi
application/x-koan skp skd skt skm
application/x-latex latex
application/x-mif mif
application/msword doc dot
application/x-netcdf nc cdf
application/x-quattro-pro wq1 wb1 wb2 wb3
application/x-sh sh
application/x-shar shar
application/x-stuffit sit
application/x-sv4cpio sv4cpio
application/x-sv4crc sv4crc
application/x-tar tar
application/x-tcl tcl
application/x-tex tex
application/x-texinfo texinfo texi
application/x-troff t tr roff
application/x-troff-man man
application/x-troff-me me
application/x-troff-ms ms
application/x-ustar ustar
application/x-wais-source src
application/zip zip
audio/basic au snd
audio/midi mid midi
audio/mpeg mpga mp2
audio/x-aiff aif aiff aifc
audio/x-pn-realaudio ram
audio/x-pn-realaudio-plugin rpm
audio/x-realaudio ra
audio/x-wav wav
chemical/x-pdb pdb xyz
image/gif gif
image/ief ief
image/jpeg jpeg jpg jpe
image/png png
image/tiff tiff tif
image/x-cmu-raster ras
image/x-freehand fhc
image/x-freehand fh4
image/x-freehand fh5
image/x-portable-anymap pnm
image/x-portable-bitmap pbm
image/x-portable-graymap pgm
image/x-portable-pixmap ppm
image/x-rgb rgb
image/x-xbitmap xbm
image/x-xpixmap xpm
image/x-xwindowdump xwd
text/html html htm
text/plain txt
text/richtext rtx
text/tab-separated-values tsv
text/x-setext etx
text/x-sgml sgml sgm
video/mpeg mpeg mpg mpe
video/quicktime qt mov
video/x-msvideo avi
video/x-sgi-movie movie
x-conference/x-cooltalk ice
x-world/x-vrml wrl vrml

This page was last updated on 2003-05-13. Please direct questions and comments regarding this page to


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