[OSM-dev] Filename extensions for OSM files

Jochen Topf jochen at remote.org
Tue May 10 18:07:33 BST 2011

As we are starting to use the full history dumps more and defining a PBF
version for them, the question of the filename extenstions (suffixes) used for
the different kinds of OSM files came up.

Currently the following extensions are used for OSM files in XML format:

.osm  -- for normal OSM files
.osc  -- for "diff" OSM files

The full history dumps on planet.openstreetmap.org also use the .osm extension.
That is a bit confusing. Because there are always special programs needed to
interpret the data, we should have a different extension.

I propose to use the extension ".osh" for this. This follows the precedent set
by .osc.


Now for the PBF format extensions. Currently .pbf or .osm.pbf are used. The
latter is a bit strange, because it seems to imply that .pbf is some sort of
compression or conversion of a .osm file (like .osm.bz2 is a compressed
version of .osm).

I would be relatively straightforward to use .osc.pbf and .osh.pbf for the
(still to be specified) PBF versions of those files.

Or we could remove that strangeness and use some other scheme:
.bosm, .bosc, .bosh (b for binary) ?
.pbf, .pbfc, .pbfh ?

Opinions? Ideas?

Jochen Topf  jochen at remote.org  http://www.remote.org/jochen/  +49-721-388298

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