KMZ File Extension

KMZ file icon
Google Earth Placemark Format
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What is KMZ file?

Files with the KMZ extension are used by a popular program – Google Earth, and they contain locations of maps shared within this software.

KMZ files are archives comprised of the main KML files (usually doc.kml) and potentially additional files, such as: custom skins, images, icons, or 3D models. All this content is packed using the ZIP method, which utilises a simple compression algorithm – DEFLATE – which provides higher compatibility with a large number of applications. According to convention, the doc.kml files are located in the main folder, and the additional files in sub-folders.

What elso do KMZ files contain?

KMZ files may include such data as:

  • markers for places with untypical names,
  • geographical coordinates – longitude and parallel,
  • 3D model data, with some restrictions.

Due to KMZ files, Google Earth enables bird’s-eye view display in many locations. Data contained in KMZ files can be displayed in any geo-spatial software supporting KML encoding.


KMZ files are also supported by Google Maps Online. It requires to upload a KMZ file on an FTP server and to paste the link into the Google Maps search box. Alternatively, user may do it manually, by placing a link directly into the following address:

Placing such link in a browser will enable to display content of a KMZ file.

Programs which support KMZ file extension

Below you will find an index of software programs that can be used to open KMZ files divided into 4 categories according to system platform supported. Files with KMZ extension, just like any other file formats, can be found on any operating system. The files in question may be transferred to other devices, be it mobile or stationary, yet not all systems may be capable of properly handling such files.

Programs that support KMZ file

Updated: 09/26/2019

How to open file with KMZ extension?

There can be multiple causes why you have problems with opening KMZ files on given system. Fortunately, most common problems with KMZ files can be solved without in-depth IT knowledge, and most importantly, in a matter of minutes. The following is a list of guidelines that will help you identify and solve file-related problems.

Step 1. Get the Google Earth

The most common reason for such problems is the lack of proper applications that supports KMZ files installed on the system. This one is an easy one. Select Google Earth or one of the recommended programs (for example, Adobe Photoshop, Global Mapper, Blender) and download it from appropriate source and install on your system. Above you will find a complete listing of programs that support KMZ files, classified according to system platforms for which they are available. The safest method of downloading Google Earth installed is by going to developer’s website (Google Inc.) and downloading the software using provided links.

Step 2. Verify the you have the latest version of Google Earth

You still cannot access KMZ files although Google Earth is installed on your system? Make sure that the software is up to date. Sometimes software developers introduce new formats in place of that already supports along with newer versions of their applications. If you have an older version of Google Earth installed, it may not support KMZ format. The latest version of Google Earth should support all file formats that where compatible with older versions of the software.

Step 3. Assign Google Earth to KMZ files

After installing Google Earth (the most recent version) make sure that it is set as the default application to open KMZ files. The method is quite simple and varies little across operating systems.

The procedure to change the default program in Windows

  • Right-click the KMZ file and choose Open with option
  • Next, select the Choose another app option and then using More apps open the list of available applications
  • Finally select Look for another app on this PC, point to the folder where Google Earth is installed, check the Always use this app to open KMZ files box and conform your selection by clicking OK button

The procedure to change the default program in Mac OS

  • Right-click the KMZ file and select Information
  • Open the Open with section by clicking its name
  • Select Google Earth and click Change for all...
  • If you followed the previous steps a message should appear: This change will be applied to all files with KMZ extension. Next, click the Continue button to finalize the process.

Step 4. Ensure that the KMZ file is complete and free of errors

Should the problem still occur after following steps 1-3, check if the KMZ file is valid. It is probable that the file is corrupted and thus cannot be accessed.

1. The KMZ may be infected with malware – make sure to scan it with an antivirus tool.

Should it happed that the KMZ is infected with a virus, this may be that cause that prevents you from accessing it. It is advised to scan the system for viruses and malware as soon as possible or use an online antivirus scanner. KMZ file is infected with malware? Follow the steps suggested by your antivirus software.

2. Verify that the KMZ file’s structure is intact

If the KMZ file was sent to you by someone else, ask this person to resend the file to you. During the copy process of the file errors may occurred rendering the file incomplete or corrupted. This could be the source of encountered problems with the file. If the KMZ file has been downloaded from the internet only partially, try to redownload it.

3. Ensure that you have appropriate access rights

Sometimes in order to access files user need to have administrative privileges. Log in using an administrative account and see If this solves the problem.

4. Verify that your device fulfills the requirements to be able to open Google Earth

The operating systems may note enough free resources to run the application that support KMZ files. Close all running programs and try opening the KMZ file.

5. Verify that your operating system and drivers are up to date

Up-to-date system and drivers not only makes your computer more secure, but also may solve problems with Google Earth Placemark Format file. Outdated drivers or software may have caused the inability to use a peripheral device needed to handle KMZ files.

Conversion of a KMZ file

File Conversions from KMZ extension to a different format
File conversions from other format to KMZ file
Do you want to help?

If you have additional information about the KMZ file, we will be grateful if you share it with our users. To do this, use the form here and send us your information on KMZ file.

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