Can I access an HDF5 file without using the HDF5 library?
Although it is possible to parse through an HDF5 file using just the file format documentation as a guide, it is strongly recommended that you use the HDF5 library to access HDF5 files instead. The algorithms and data structures stored in an HDF5 file can be complex and difficult to understand well enough to parse correctly. Additionally, there are certain requirements on the structure of the data structures (the B-trees, for example) that may not be obvious from a static representation of them in the file and may not be fulfilled by indiscriminate operations on them. There are also some third-party data structures stored in the file that are not documented in the HDF5 file format documentation, such as the format of compressed data using the deflate algorithm.