The Audio Interchange File Format, (ending aif, more rarely also aiff) was developed by Apple in the late 80s and represents the standard audio format on the Macintosh operating system. The equivalent on Windows systems is the resource Interchange File Format (extension riff).
In a standard AIF file, the audio data contained is stored uncompressed as PCM. Therefore, such files are quite large. In addition to the standard format, there is also the AIFC format, which also knows various types of compression. Although there is a native extension for this on the Mac (AIFC), only the AIF or AIF suffix is often used for compressed AIF files. However, most applications can still play these files without any problems.
On Windows, it should be noted that most applications can not cope with all compression methods. Here only iTunes or the Quicktimeplayer helps, because these programs can deal with all variants.
Most often resolving problems with opening AIF files is very simple. Just install an appropriate program that supports such files. All of the listed programs support AIF files, but may vary in offered function and purpose. Some programs may be capable only of viewing contents of AIF files or offer file conversion options, but may not be capable of editing such files.
It is possible that although a compatible program has been installed on user’s system, it is not used by the system to open it. This may happen because no default application was associated with this type of files. To associate AIF files with given application, select "Open with" from drop-down menu (accessed by right-clicking on the file). Then select from the list the program or application you want to be used to open this type of file. If the QuickTime Player applications is not on the list, select "Browse" option in order to manually locate the directory where QuickTime Player has been installed.
Sometimes problems with opening AIF files may not lie with the application itself, but can arise due to other causes, such as: