Everything You Need to Know About Webloc Files

At its core, a Webloc file is straightforward – it’s a small file that stores the URL of a website.

You can think of it as a direct link to a web page that you can double-click to open in your default web browser. The concept might seem simple, yet it’s this simplicity that encapsulates the beauty of Webloc files.

Webloc Mac file

They enable users to keep a tidy and organized desktop or folder system where important or frequently visited websites are just a click away, without the need to open a browser and navigate through bookmarks.

Origins and Purpose of Webloc Format

The Webloc format has its origins in the Mac OS, now known as macOS.

It was introduced as a convenient way for users to save links to websites directly from their browsers to their computer. This was particularly useful for users who needed quick access to specific web pages without the need to launch a web browser and sift through bookmarks.

Technical Overview

At its essence, a Webloc file is an XML plist (property list) file that macOS utilizes to store properties and configuration settings for various applications.

However, for Webloc files, the primary focus is on storing a single URL. When you create a Webloc file, macOS wraps the URL into this plist format, which then allows the operating system to recognize and act upon the file, essentially treating it as a direct link to the internet.

Creating a Webloc File on macOS

The process is intuitively simple:

  1. Navigate to the website you wish to bookmark outside your browser.
  2. Drag the website’s URL from the address bar of your browser to your desktop or any folder within Finder.
  3. macOS automatically creates a Webloc file, using the webpage’s title as the file name.


What is a Webloc file and why is it useful?

A Webloc file is a macOS-specific file format used to save web URLs as files on your computer. It allows you to access your favorite web pages directly from your desktop or any folder, bypassing the need to open a browser and navigate through bookmarks.

Can Webloc files be opened on Windows?

Natively, Windows does not recognize Webloc files. However, several third-party tools and online services can open or convert Webloc files to Windows-compatible formats, such as URL files. This ensures that the convenience of Webloc files can be enjoyed across different operating systems.

Are Webloc files safe to use?

Webloc files are generally safe to use, provided they link to trusted websites. However, like any file that directs to online content, they can be manipulated to lead to malicious sites. Always ensure the Webloc files you open come from reputable sources, and consider scanning them with security software if you’re unsure.

Can I edit a Webloc file to change its URL?

Yes, Webloc files can be manually edited to change the URL they point to. This requires opening the file with a text editor capable of handling XML, such as TextEdit on macOS. Be cautious when editing to ensure the file format remains intact.