Someone asked me how to open .ecw files earlier today. After a little research I was able to find out that the files were associated to EclipseCrossword which is crossword puzzle software. Below are instructions on how to install Eclipse Crossword Puzzle, open the .ecw file, and export the file to something that MS Paint or Microsoft Word can open.
Open .ECW File And Export To .WMF To Open With Microsoft Paint:
- Visit EclipseCrossword: First visit the EclipseCrossword download page by clicking here. This will open the EclipseSoftware download page as shown in the below example image.
- Download EclipseCrossword: Click the Download EclipseCrossword button to begin the EclipseCrossword download. The file you download will be named EclipseCrossword.exe and should be saved somewhere that is easy to access like your desktop.
- Begin EclipseCrossword Installation: Double click the EclipseCrossword.exe file to begin the software installation process. This will open a window similar to the below as the EclipseCrossword prepares to install.
The EclipseCrossword.msi file will be downloaded and run automatically and eventually launch the below window which is the starting point of the installation.
- EclipseCrossword License Agreement: From the EclipseCrossword Setup Wizard start screen displayed in the example image above click the next button to display the EclipseCrossword License Agreement as shown in the below image.
Click the radio button next to “I Agree” followed by clicking the Next button on the License Agreement window to continue.
- EclipseCrossword Installation Folder: After agreeing to the EclipseCrossword License Agreement by clicking I Agree followed by the Next button will take you to the Installation Folder screen as shown below. The default should be fine so click the Next button to continue.
- Confirm EclipseCrossword Installation: After continuing past the installation folder screen above a summary of the installation will display on the Confirm Installation screen shown in the below example image. Click the Next button to begin the EclipseCrossword installation.
- EclipseCrossword Installed: Depending on the speed of your computer EclipseCrossword should install fairly quickly and once it is installed the below window will display.
Click Next ont he EclipseCrossword Information screen displayed above to display the installation completed screen below. After clicking the Close button below the installation is finished.
- Launch EclipseCrossword: Now locate EclipseCrossword in your start menu on Windows and click it to launch EclipseCrossword. The first time you launch EclipseCrossword the below welcome window will display.
To skip the tutorial click the No button which will also launch EclipseCrossword as shown in the below example image.
- Open .ECW File: Click the radio button next to “I would like to open a crossword that I have previously saved” and browse to the .ECW file. It will look similar to the below once the crossword puzzle is opened.
Click the Next button to continue to where we will export the .ECW file to a more universal file type.
- Export .ECW File to .WMF: After clicking the Next button above you will come to the next screen in EclipseCrossword as shown below.
Now click on the Publish Crossword tab to reveal the options for exporting the crossword puzzle to a different format as shown in the below window.
Your ECW file is now converted to WMF which should be able to be opened on any form of Windows computer using Microsoft Paint which is typically installed by default on Windows.
Your ECW file has now been opened and exported to a format which is fairly universal to all Windows computers. We ill write another article on how Mac users can have a friend with a Windows computer convert the file to a format that they can easily open.