Open KEY File

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KEY Files For Software Registration

A KEY file is a generic file extension used by various programs when registering legal copies of the software. It can be saved in a plain text format, but generally contains an encrypted key string that authenticates the purchase and registers the software.

It is important to know that since KEY files are used by various software products, no program will be able to open them in the first place. Instead, you will need to know which program a KEY file belongs to in order to use it as a registry for the software.

A KEY file is typically created when the program is being registered and is usually stored in the program's application folder or in the system preferences folder.

Below are some examples of applications that use KEY files as license records and the like.


Software log file used by LightWave, a professional 3D rendering application; stores the 16-digit license key and allows users to have a legal copy of the software.

SSL protocol

Those applications that use the SSL protocol also use KEY files to store and export their digital keys. Such files have various functions but are mostly used to store code strings or encoded keys. These do not have a standardized structure as such, so that no specific program as such is defined to open it, each application simply executes commands creating its own format of what it interprets from the file.

Avira Antivirus Personal Edition

The KEY file extension is also used by the Avira Personal Edition software. Avira Free Antivirus is a freeware. Like almost all antiviruses, this one scans hard drivers and removable drives for viruses and runs as a background process, checking every open and closed file. Avira uses KEY files to save your license key, both free and premium.