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How to open CFM files on a Mac: Come in out of the Cold (Fusion)

The .CFM file extension stands for Cold Fusion Markup (language). You don't see it very often, but when you do, you may have a problem opening or printing the file.

A PDF is a PDF by Any Other Name?

If you open a .CFM file using a Text Editor, you'll see mostly unprintable characters. But there's a clue to how to open the file amid the jibberish.


Close the file. Change the extension to .PDF. When you do this you'll get a warning:

Choose "Use .pdf".  (I don't recommend that you ignore warnings regarding extenions as a rule but in this case, please do.)  

Look at the file properties (Select the file then click the right button mouse or type control-click). 

Now open the file with Preview, Safari...

Changing the file extension also works if you want to open CFM files on Windows PCs. 



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I received a excel spreadsheet within a cfm format from a trusted source. After initially trying your suggestion, Adobe Reader wouldn't open it as pdf file, so I tried opening it from within Excel and was successful.

Thank you very much... I did download Adobe Reader and move the file into Adobe reader icon and It opened without a problem... Thanks so much..!!!

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