How to open STL files

Did your computer fail to open a STL file? We explain what STL files are and recommend software that we know can open or convert your files.

What is a STL file?

The .stl (STereoLithography) file extension was developed by Albert-Battaglin Consulting Group for the Standard Tessellation Language, a common CAD stereolithography format for 3D modeling and prototyping. STL files are also used in generating complex models that are popular in 3D printers and generators.

STL file extension is commonly found or used in 3D systems. This file extension that represents the data for making simple CAD models that appear in 3D set up. It changes the surface of the object by integrating tessellation. Tessellation is a tiling of a plane by using one or more geometric shapes, making sure that these shapes don’t overlap and produce no gaps between them. It transforms curves and planes that compose the curve into simple lines.

The CAD models appear in black and white 3D image. STL files usually use triangles in tessellating the object. By tessellating the model, .stl files are able to detect tiny areas in a model that has an imperfect spot before it is used.

Software that will open, convert or fix STL files

These apps are known to open certain types of STL files. Since many different programs may use STL files for different purposes, you may need to try a few of the apps to open your specific STL file.

FireworksFireworksUser submitted
MeshmixerMeshmixerUser submitted
Jubler Subtitle EditorJubler Subtitle EditorUser submitted
netfabb Studio Basicnetfabb Studio BasicUser submitted
Subtitle WorkshopSubtitle WorkshopUser submitted
netfabb Basicnetfabb BasicUser submitted
3D-Tool3D-ToolUser submitted
eDrawings RapidFire Lite ApplicationeDrawings RapidFire Lite ApplicationUser submitted
Cadence Design System StmedCadence Design System StmedUser submitted
PSpice Stimulus EditorPSpice Stimulus EditorUser submitted
We have not verified any programs that we know for certain can work with STL-files on Mac. If you know one, please use the Suggest link below and tell us about it!
We have not verified any online services that we know for certain can work with STL-files. If you know one, please use the Suggest link below and tell us about it!