How to Change a File Type Using Windows

Are you completely confused by all the strange sounding words that are what could be called "Computerese"? Do you feel lucky just to know where to turn it on and it not to catch fire or freeze up? Here are step-by-step instructions for simple computer tasks using Microsoft Windows Operating Systems. This "How To" will show you how to change the file type if, for example, have a project that calls for a .jpg type file and the one you want to use is a .gif type and the project will not accept it.


  1. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 1
    Find the file you wish to change, and then using your mouse right click onto the file. It will highlight the file and a drop down menu will appear. Look down the list of options you see there and find " OPEN WITH" and click it.
  2. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 2
    Find MS Paint (or a comparable program). A list of programs will be offered to you as well as an option to "BROWSE". Look on the list and see if the option "PAINT" is listed there. If it is not, then click the "BROWSE" option and it will open up a popup where you can search your computer for the "PAINT" program. Once you find it, then click it to put it into the list of programs you can send your file to. Once it is in the list, click it and it will send your file to "Paint" program and open it up for you.
  3. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 3
    Look on the toolbar of the Paint program and find the option "FILE" and click it. A drop down menu appears and you will see the option "SAVE AS", click on it.
  4. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 4
    Look at the bottom of the popup. There are two lines that will be used to change the file type. The last line is the one that will be used first. At the end of it is the dark space to click to get the file type options you need. Click it and a drop down menu appears and you will see different types of file types you can choose there..
  5. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 5
    Look for the line in the options that says .JPG. It might include other letters there as well but don't let that confuse you. if .JPG is in the line with the rest of them, that is the one you need. Click it.
    • It will place that choice you made into the blank line.
  6. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 6
    Now look at the top of the popup and make sure you are saving this file in the same place it was at originally, or if you want to make a new folder to place it in .. now is the time to do that too.
  7. Image titled Change a File Type Using Windows Step 7
    Once you are sure of the destination your new file will be going to... then simply click the "SAVE" option on the line above the one you placed your preferred new file type into.


  • The reason different file types exist is that they will let our files do different things, and if we change the file type of some of them. they do not continue to look and act like they did in the other file type.]
    • The main change that is destructive is to change a .GIF file that is animated with movements or sparkles or changing colors to any other file type. It will lose the ability to do anything other than be a one dimensional image, it loses its magic qualities. If it contained flashes or sparkles.. these most of the time become a grey blog instead of colored like we want them to be. And if it had a transparent background, that will be changed to a solid color like white or black also. So be aware of that possibility and don't get upset if it doesn't turn out to be a usable image after you change it.


  • Be aware that changing file types can change the functions and appearance of a file. But be bold and try it out to see what happens.. you can always use the delete option if it doesn't work out.

Things You'll Need

  • A computer with Microsoft Windows Operating System
  • An image file you wish to change the file type of.
  • Most important tool you need is the " I Ain't Afraid of No PC" attitude

Article Info

Categories: File Manipulation | Microsoft Paint