5 Ways to Overcome These Files Can't Be Opened in Windows

5 Ways to Overcome These Files Can't Be Opened in Windows

5 Ways to Overcome These Files Can't Be Opened in Windows

 If Windows refuses to allow opening the file and gives you a “These Files Can't Be Opened” message, try these fixes to regain access.

Have you recently tried opening a file in Windows and received an error message saying, “These Files Can't Be Opened”? This error usually occurs with .exe files, but some users also experience it with different file types. This issue is most common on Windows 7 and 8, but you can still encounter it on Windows 10 PCs.

Luckily, fixing the error won't take much time. One thing that can take a lot of time is determining the cause of the error so you can apply the appropriate fix. But whatever the cause, one of the following fixes should help you resolve the These Files Can't Be Opened error message.

1. Check If File is Blocked

Sometimes, when you download executable files from the internet or transfer files between PCs, Windows may decide to block those files to protect the system. When this happens, you will see the error message “These Files Can't Be Opened”, but you only need two steps to unblock this file.

Check If File is Blocked

To illustrate this behavior here, the admin downloads the 4K Video Downloader's setup file to the PC. Windows doesn't block access to this file for admins, but it does warn admins under the Security section of the File Properties > General tab.

The message says "This file came from another computer and might be blocked to help protect this computer." If you can't access the file, you can fix it by checking the Unblock box and pressing OK.

If you are using a different version of Windows, you may see a checkbox button, but the process is the same. Once done, try running the file and see if things are back on track.

2. Change Internet Properties

Windows checks your Internet Properties when deciding whether a file should be allowed to run on your PC. If Internet Properties marks the file as unsafe, Windows will give you the error message “These files can't be opened”.

Thus, to change Windows behavior, you have to make some changes in Internet Properties. Note that this will require you to make your security settings less strict. While you may be able to fix errors by doing this, it will also make your system vulnerable to security threats if you don't pay attention to which files you download to the system.

If you have decided to take this method, start by opening Internet Properties. To do so.

Change Internet Properties

1. Press Win + R.

2. Type inetcpl.cpl and press Enter.

3. Switch to the Security tab in the Internet Properties window and click the Custom level button.

4. Now you will see a window named Security Settings – Internet Zone. Scroll through the list under the Settings section and look for Launching applications and unsafe files.

5. Ensure that the radio button for Prompt (recommended) is selected. This option is usually selected by default, but if you've messed with internet properties before, you may have accidentally changed it to Disable.

6. When finished, click OK and see if you can run the file.

3. Try Editing the Value in the Windows Registry

If the previous fix doesn't work, you can also try allowing unsafe files by editing the Windows registry. You have to add a new registry entry using the Command Prompt. To do this follow the instructions below:

1. Press Win + R to open the Run box.

2. Type cmd, and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to open Command Prompt with admin privileges.

3. Run the command reg add “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Associations” /v “DefaultFileTypeRisk” /t REG_DWORD /d “1808” /f and reg add “HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\ Policies\Attachments” /v “SaveZoneInformation” /t REG_DWORD /d “1” /f.

4. This will add two new registry keys. Once done, restart your PC and try opening the file.

4. Reset Internet Explorer

If you are using Internet Explorer, resetting settings to default can help fix the “These files can't be opened” error. To reset Internet Explorer settings.

Reset Internet Explorer

1. Click the ellipsis icon at the top right of the browser and click Internet Options.

2. Switch to the Advanced tab and click the Reset button.

3. When prompted, confirm the reset. then reboot your PC.

If you still can't run the file you want, maybe it's time for a last resort.

5. Restore the Computer to the Previous System Restore Point

If you were able to run certain files before but started getting this error after playing around with some settings, you can perform a system restore to a previous state where everything was running smoothly. To do so follow the steps below:

Restore Computer To Previous System Restore Point

1. First of all make sure that you already have a system resort point on your PC.

2. Start by pressing Win + R, type rstrui, and press Enter. This will launch the System Restore Point window.

3. If you have a restore point, you will see it under the Recommended restore option.

4. If you don't have a restore point, you will see a message, “TNo restore points have been created on your computer's system drive” This means that the PC has no past reference points to restore, and therefore, you cannot use this method. to fix the problem.

5. If you have a restore point on your system, choose a recommended restore point or choose another based on when the problem started, and click Next.

6. Continue following the wizard instructions. Once the system is restored, your PC will reboot and you can now run the files you want.


So that's how to solve These Files Can't Be Opened on Windows. Hopefully, one of these fixes worked to fix your problem opening the file you wanted. However, if the problem still persists, you can try resetting the PC. All settings on your Windows will return to their defaults, and some files may be lost in the process, so it's best to make a backup before resetting it.

Also, read the article about 5 Ways to Overcome UEFI Firmware Settings Not Available in Windows 10. And see you in another article. Bye
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