How to Fix Windows Failure to Open .exe Files?

by Lucia Danes - -


Issue: How to Fix Windows Failure to Open .exe Files?

Solved Answer

Failure to open .exe files on Windows indicates that the link relating the program and the shortcut might have been corrupted. If only one program does not launch, you may try reinstalling it.

Though usually, this issue refers to the broken link, failure to launch the .exe file[1] of a security tool might also indicate another issue – malware corruption. More about this issue you may find in the article about the issues launching Malwarebytes program. If that is the case, renaming the .exe file might prove to be useful.

If the issue persists on all .exe files on Windows 10, make sure you have installed Cumulative Update for Windows 10 August 5[2]. You may also reinstall the update.[3]Repair broken .exe links

You will find below the instructions how to change certain settings in Registry Editor. Make sure no malware is present on the system. If you have doubts, scan the system with Reimage or another security tool.

Option 1. Reinstall Cumulative Update for Windows 10

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Try installing the update. You can do so by entering Update settings.

  1. Click on Start button, type Update.
  2. Opt for Check for Updates.
  3. Choose Update history.
  4. There, you will find the list of all successfully (or failed) installed updates.
  5. Find Cumulative Update for August 5, 2015, and check its status. If it was installed correctly, check the following methods.

Option 2. Run System File Checker

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

Scan with System File Checker

If the issue lies in the operating system, this integrated tool should be able to fix it or at least identify the cause.

  1. Type Windows+R button and type cmd.
  2. Once the program opens, type sfc /scannow.
  3. Wait for the program to finish the scanning process.

Option 3. Change registry file values

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

Change .exe registry key value

Inability to run .exe files is quite a common issue, Microsoft has come up with the solution:

  1. Click the Start button and type regedit.
  2. Press Enter to launch the program.
  3. Browse to the following registry key: HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\\.exe
  4. With .exe selected, right-click Default and click Modify.
  5. Change the Value data: to exefile.
  6. Scroll down until you find HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\\exefile.
  7. Click on the folder, right-click on the Default file and choose Modify function.
  8. Change the Value data: to %1%.
  9. Scroll down again and find the following entry HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\\exefile\\shell\\open.
  10. Click on the open folder, right-click on Default and choose Modify function.
  11. Change the Value data to %1%.
  12.  Close the Registry Editor and restart the device.

If you are running Windows, you may find Microsoft Troubleshooter useful. Download it from the official site.There are also available .exe association files online. Note that there is a possibility to download a corrupted one with malware within.

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Prevent websites, ISP, and other parties from tracking you

Private Internet Access is a VPN that can prevent your Internet Service Provider, the government, and third-parties from tracking your online and allow you to stay completely anonymous. The software provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, ensuring optimal performance and not slowing you down. You can also bypass geo-restrictions and view such services as Netflix, BBC, Disney+, and other popular streaming services without limitations, regardless of where you are.

A VPN is also crucial when it comes to user privacy. Online trackers such as cookies can not only be used by social media platforms and other websites but also your Internet Service Provider and the government. Even if you apply the most secure settings via your web browser, you can still be tracked via apps that you are connected to the internet. Besides, privacy-focused browsers like Tor is are not an optimal choice due to diminished connection speed.

Therefore, to stay completely anonymous and prevent the ISP and the government from spying on you, you should employ Private Internet Access VPN. It will allow you to connect to the internet while being completely anonymous, prevent trackers, ads, as well as malicious content. Most importantly, you will prevent the illegal surveillance activities that NSA and other governmental institutions are performing behind your back.


Recover your lost files quickly

Unforeseen circumstances can happen at any time while using the computer: it can turn off due to a power cut, a Blue Screen of Death (BSoD) can occur, or random Windows updates can decide to reboot the machine when you went away for a few minutes. As a result, your schoolwork, important documents, and other data might be lost.

Additionally, you might also be attacked by malware that can corrupt your Windows or encrypt files with a robust encryption algorithm, and ask for a ransom in Bitcoin for the decryption tool. Cybercriminals might not deliver what they promised, however, so it is better to attempt alternative file recovery methods that could help you to retrieve at least some portion of the lost data.

Data recovery software is one of the options that could help you recover your files. Once you delete a file, it does not vanish into thin air – it remains on your system as long as no new data is written on top of it. Data Recovery Pro is recovery software that searchers for working copies of deleted files within your hard drive. By using the tool, you can prevent loss of valuable documents, school work, personal pictures, and other crucial files.

About the author
Lucia Danes
Lucia Danes - Security researcher

Lucia Danes is the news editor at UGetFix. She is always on the move because the eager for knowledge makes her travel around the globe and attend InfoSec events and conferences.

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