Open PWL files

  • Full name
    Microsoft Windows Password Format
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Have you encountered a problem with a PWL file? Don’t you know which program opens a file with this extension? You will find all the information you need about working with a PWL file here. In the further part of this page we have added a list of programs that should open your PWL file. It is enough you choose a proper application for your operating system, download and install it.

What is PWL file?

The file extension PWL is used for Windows 9x password lists. These files contain the Windows login data as well as the network and dial-up connections. A PWL file can store up to 255 passwords, is encrypted and is created in the Windows directory.

More info

A PWL file is automatically created by Windows, if you select the Remember password option when logging in.

Programs which can open a PWL file

How to open file with PWL extension?

In order to open a file with PWL extension one of the following programs must be installed on user’s system. If a problem with opening PWL file occurred, it is highly possible that none of the listed programs is present on user’s system. Even if one or more said programs are installed, there may be issues related with given programs. In order to solve a problem with PWL files, follow the instructions below.
Install Proactive System Password Recovery or other program from the list

Most often resolving problems with opening PWL files is very simple. Just install an appropriate program that supports such files. All of the listed programs support PWL files, but may vary in offered function and purpose. Some programs may be capable only of viewing contents of PWL files or offer file conversion options, but may not be capable of editing such files.

Set Proactive System Password Recovery as the default program for opening PWL 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 PWL 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 Proactive System Password Recovery applications is not on the list, select "Browse" option in order to manually locate the directory where Proactive System Password Recovery has been installed.


Check the section that lists most common problems with PWL files

Sometimes problems with opening PWL files may not lie with the application itself, but can arise due to other causes, such as:

  • File data is corrupted
  • PWL files has been not been completely download from the internet (only a part of the data has been downloaded)
  • Currently used user account hasn’t been granted necessary privileges to open PWL files (should that be the case, please contact your system administrator or IT specialist)
  • PWL file was being copied from a corrupted storage device and is incomplete or data is corrupted. (Copying files from unknown or untrusted sources should be conducted with great care as such files may contain malicious software, which can damage your system)

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