If you’re looking at the Documents on your computer and you can’t see the period and three-letter suffixes of the filenames (such as .doc or .docx or .xls or xlsx and .jpg etc.,) that are visible in the below screen shot, don’t panic! You need to tell Windows to show them.
The fact is that nearly all files have names like Letter to Mom.doc, Financial Projections.xls, or ILOVEYOU.vbs. But Windows, with rare exception, shows you only the first part of the filename. It cuts off the filename extension.
So you see Letter to Mom, without the .doc (which brands the file as a Word document), Financial Projections without the .xls (a dead giveaway for an Excel spreadsheet), and ILOVEYOU without the .vbs (which is the filename extension for Visual Basic programs).
To make Windows show you filename extensions the easy way, follow these steps:
1. Open Windows Explorer by choosing Start ➪ Documents.
2. Press Alt to show the menu; then choose Tools➪Folder Options and click the View tab. You see the Folder View’s Advanced Settings box, shown in screen shot below.
Screen shot to Make Windows show you filename extensions.
3. Deselect the Hide Extensions for Known File Types check box.
While you’re here, you may want to change two other settings if you can avoid the temptation to delete or rename files that you don’t understand.
Select the Show Hidden Files, Folders and Drives option button if you want Windows to show you all files on your computer. Also consider deselecting the Hide Protected Operating System Files (Recommended) check box — showing Protected files tends to clutter the screen, so use your own discretion. Sometimes you need to see all your files, even if Windows wants to hide them from you.
4. Click the OK button.
Take a look at your unveiled filename extensions.