file command Ver 0.0001

UNIX Command

$file vmlinuz-3.1.0-1-amd64
vmlinuz-3.1.0-1-amd64: Linux kernel x86 boot executable bzImage, version 3.1.0-1-amd64 (unknown@Debian) #1 SMP Tue Nov 29 13:47:12 UTC 2, RO-rootFS, swap_dev 0x2, Normal VGA

UNIX Explanation

file tests each  argument in an attempt to  classify it.  There are
three  sets of tests,  performed in  this order:  filesystem tests,
magic  tests, and  language tests.   The first  test  that succeeds
causes the file type to be printed.

Theory Drop . magic number

A constant numerical  or text value used to  identify a file format
or protocol.

source :

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