SNP file format

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Snapshot File
Filename extension .snp
Developed by Microsoft
Type of format Access report output, multi-page, precise
Container for EMF (contained pages)
Contained by CAB (compression wrapper)

The SNP file format is used by Microsoft Access to store Report Snapshots in a single file which can be viewed and printed by the Microsoft Snapshot Viewer, available as a no-additional-charge download from Microsoft (runs on Windows only). This allows report output to be exported and viewed on Windows computers which do not have Microsoft Access installed.

File format[edit]

SNP files are based on the Microsoft Compound File Binary Format (CFBF),[1] which is also the basis for the Advanced Authoring Format (AAF). CFBF is a reasonably simple container format which can store multiple files, directories and so on.[2] For SNP files, Microsoft Access uses CFBF to store each page as a separate Enhanced Metafile (EMF)-like format containing all of the graphics commands required to reproduce the page.[3] Since CFBF files are not compressed, Microsoft's CAB format is used to reduce the size of the CFBF, resulting in a compact file format which may be only a few kilobytes in size for each page of text and simple graphics - lines, boxes, etc.

End of support[edit]

In Access 2010, snapshot format for reports will not be available.

As an alternative, you can export your reports to PDF/XPS and Excel formats instead. This is native functionality that doesn’t require a download.


  1. ^ "Advanced Authoring Format Low-Level Container Specification" (PDF). Microsoft Structured Storage version 3 specification (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2006-05-07. Retrieved 2006-05-22. 
  2. ^ "Microsoft Compound Document File Format" (PDF). CFBF description. Retrieved 2006-05-22. 
  3. ^ "Is Microsoft Access Snapshot considered EMF?" (HTML). MSDN Forum discussion of SNP file format. Retrieved 2008-09-27. 

External links[edit]