CRX - Chrome Extension

What is a CRX file

Google Chrome web browser themes can be extended using features. The files containing all necessary information and data about these features are saved with a CRX extension. Ad blockers, e-book readers, games and other applications can be stored, installed and executed using these files. The file itself can be used to manually install a feature by dragging it into the Google Chrome Extensions window. To open said window, type the following command into Chrome's command line: chrome://chrome/extensions/

Technically speaking, CRX files are plugin files used on Google Chrome. The files inside the CRX are compressed and can comprise of JavaScript or JSON files as well as other executable programs or images. For compression, CRX file use the same formatting as ZIP files. Standard ZIP decompression programs can not open CRX files though because the files contain a special, custom header section. Chrome plugins can either be installed via the "Add to Chrome" button on the extensions's page or by manually dragging a downloaded CRX file into the Extensions window. In the former method, the user does not get in touch with the CRX file since the web browser handles the downloading, unpacking and installation itself.

Here's a small, but not exhaustive list of programs that can open CRX documents:

  • 7-Zip (Windows)
  • Google Chrome (Windows, Mac & Linux)
Extension CRX
MIME type application/x-chrome-extension
Useful links