FileIO aims to provide a common framework for detecting file formats and dispatching to appropriate readers/writers. The two core functions in this package are called load and save, and offer high-level support for formatted files (in contrast with julia's low-level read and write). To avoid name conflicts, packages that provide support for standard file formats through functions named load and save are encouraged to register with FileIO.


Install FileIO within Julia via

julia> using Pkg

julia> Pkg.add("FileIO")


If your format has been registered, it might be as simple as

using FileIO
obj = load(filename)

to read data from a formatted file. FileIO will attempt to find an installed package capable of reading filename; if no such package is found, it will suggest an appropriate package for you to add. It doesn't even have to be a file; you can download the Julia logo with

julia> using FileIO, HTTP

julia> img = load(HTTP.URI(""));

julia> typeof(img)
Matrix{RGBA{N0f8}} (alias for Array{ColorTypes.RGBA{FixedPointNumbers.Normed{UInt8, 8}}, 2})

Likewise, saving might be as simple as

save(filename, obj)

You can also utilize a piping style to save values to files like this

obj |> save(filename)

If you just want to inspect a file to determine its format, then

file = query(filename)
s = query(io)   # io is a stream

will return a File or Stream object that also encodes the detected file format.

Sometimes you want to read or write files that are larger than your available memory, or might be an unknown or infinite length (e.g. reading an audio or video stream from a socket). In these cases it might not make sense to process the whole file at once, but instead process it a chunk at a time. For these situations FileIO provides the loadstreaming and savestreaming functions, which return an object that you can read or write, rather than the file data itself.

This would look something like:

using FileIO
audio = loadstreaming("bigfile.wav")
    while !eof(audio)
        chunk = read(audio, 4096) # read 4096 frames
        # process the chunk

or use do syntax to auto-close the stream:

using FileIO
loadstreaming("bigfile.wav") do audio
    while !eof(audio)
        chunk = read(audio, 4096) # read 4096 frames
        # process the chunk

Note that in these cases you may want to use read! with a pre-allocated buffer for maximum efficiency.

Supported formats

The existing supported formats are summarized in the Registry table.

Supporting new formats

If you want to extend FileIO's support for new formats, there are two separate steps:

These steps can be done in either order.