Universal Viewer is an easy-to-use file viewer that supports a wide range of file formats.

The program will open and display all the most common graphics files, for instance (and most of the uncommon ones, too). It can handle text, binary, hex, unicode, RTF and UTF-8 files, with no limits on size. And Universal Viewer can work with other programs to display all the formats supported by Windows Media Player, Internet Explorer, and Microsoft Office (if it's installed).

Need more? Universal Viewer can be extended with plugins, for even more functionality. These will let you additionally view icon files, Flash clips (SWF and FLV), CAD-type vector graphics (DXF, DWG, HPGL, SVG, CGM), fonts, and various database formats (DBF, DB, MDB, MDF, XLS, CSV), amongst many others.

And Explorer integration makes it very easy to access the program. If you've discovered some huge text document and don't want to wait for it to appear in Microsoft Word, for instance, just right-click the file and select Universal Viewer for a much quicker look at its contents.

While the viewer itself is free, it does come with a shareware component, the Navigation Panel. This is an Explorer-like window that you can use to browse your system, and any files you select are immediately displayed in the viewer. A licence will cost you from $23.

Build 5.7 adds these features:

-NavPanel add-on is now freeware; PDF/XPS/DjVu plugin preinstalled; added Space/BkSp cycling through images only.

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Fast, free, and very extensible with a wide range of useful plugins available