File Association incorrect after download?

Dennis Faas's picture

Side note: I was late getting back from a Holiday this past Tuesday (Canadian Thanksgiving) and was unable to send out Tuesday's edition of the Gazette on time. Without further adieu, please enjoy this "late" edition!

Infopackets Reader Ali V. writes:

" Good morning! Firstly I'd like to I've found your newsletter very helpful in the past and have downloaded thins that have been suggested, so thank you.

I wonder if you could help me with a problem I am having. I use Windows 98, BT Open World (my Internet Service Provider), and I am having a real problem opening attachments in email. My computer crashed recently and we had to buy a new one. Now, when I try to open attachments, I get an error message stating that the file cannot be read.

I think I may have caused the problem, because the first time that I opened an attachment, a window came up with 'Open With?' and I selected Adobe Acrobat Reader. I cannot seem to correct the problem because now I can't get the 'Open With?' window to appear again so that I can change the file association. Your help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! "

My response:

The first thing you need to do is look at the filename extension of the email file attachment (I.E.: .ZIP, .EXE, .DOC, etc) ... then, you need to remove the incorrect file association and associate it with the proper program.

To change a file association:

  1. Go to My Computer. Click C drive. This will open an Explorer Window.
  2. Click Tools -> Folder Options.
  3. Go to File Types.
  4. Search for the file extension in question.
  5. Delete it.
  6. Close your email program if it's already open. Open it again. Go to the email with the file attachment. Attempt to open the file. The 'Open With?' window will appear: this time, select the proper program association.

If you're not sure what the file should be associated with, have a look at this web site which lists common file extensions used on the Internet:

Of course, there is a much easier way to do all of this.

There is a program called AssociateThis! which manages file extensions quickly and easily -- without all the extra work. Incase you missed the review, you can read it here:

Associate This Review

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