The computer should use these extensions to properly assign files to the correct applications, so that these files can be opened in the right format. If you have every used a computer, you will be aware that there are lots of different file types in use, and it is not possible to open every single file type that you ever receive.
The problem normally lies with the fact that you computer may not have an adequate application which supports that sort of file. In most cases, you computer will read the file extensions on the file, and then automatically choose a program with which to open it.
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