FIX: EXE or LNK files will not open or not working in Windows 7

You might encounter situation where you may not able to open any .exe files or shortcut link files i.e. EXE or LKN files. You might instead get a “Open with” dialog box or it may open the file in another program. This happens if the file association of these file extensions may have got corrupted.

To rectify the situation, I suggest you download and apply the following registry fixes.

- For fixing the .exe file extension download this EXE Fix.

- For fixing the .lnk file extension download this LNK Fix.

Right on the File and Click on Merge.

You will get the following warning:

Warning 400x115 FIX: EXE or LNK files will not open or not working in Windows 7

Click Yes and reboot the system.

If the icons didn’t show up correctly then you might need to rebuild the Icon cache.

A corrupted Registry, caused either by a bad software or malware or any other reason, can lead to your Windows being unable to open a particular file type.

You can also use our freeware File Association Fixer to fix file type associations easily, with a click! Microsoft has also released a Fix It to fix EXE file association problems.

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Shyam aka “Captain Jack” is a Microsoft MVP alumni and a Windows Enthusiast with an interest in Advanced Windows troubleshooting. Suggestions made and opinions expressed by him here are his personal one's and not of his current employers. He blogs at captaindbg.com.
  • Nitin Chauhan

    It can be done easily using a simple utility “unassoc.exe”
    Download link: http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/OS-Enhancements/Unassoc.shtml

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com/about-twc-contributor-shyam-sasindran ShyamS@TWC

    Thanks for the suggestion Nitin about that tool has EXE extension, so it will not open until we run the reg file.

  • http://techibee.com techibee

    I never seen a case where exe/lnk files are failed to open. The only possible case for the failures is either exe is corrupted or lnk has wrong path. You can not do “open with” operation on exe files. Am I missing anything here?

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com/about-twc-contributor-shyam-sasindran ShyamS@TWC

    Thanks for the comment Techibee. Lot of cases somehow people open EXE with some other application like Notepad and we can’t revert it back. Such cases we could use this Method. I personally help lot of people with the same issue so though of making it as an article. Just Google it you’ll find of the threads about it.

    Hope this answers.

  • http://techibee.com techibee

    After posting the comment, I have seen few forum threads talking about this. I am curious, how the OS related exe are able to execute when the default program for exe is files is changed. All the installed programs also should fail as the exe assoc is set to notepad that means system should go complete useless.

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com/about-twc-contributor-shyam-sasindran ShyamS@TWC

    I haven’t tested it myself mate … But I understand your point that’s why broken EXE extension could be a pain.

  • Aminlove 87
  • Trishul Shukla

    whenever i open the file or application is windows 7 ultimate the error comes adobe reader cannot read this file dnt knw wat to do but this errors comes in all the application and all the icon on the desktop comesas adobe reader pls help me

  • Trishul Shukla

    whenever i open the file or application is windows 7 ultimate the error comes adobe reader cannot read this file dnt knw wat to do but this errors comes in all the application and all the icon on the desktop comesas adobe reader pls help me

  • William

    how can i run it?its just a word pad

  • Tirroccia

    how do i use the exe fix

  • elielCT

    yea, ur missing ALOT!!

    this is common with certain malware.. little trick to prevent the user from running AV instal, notepad scipts, command line, registry!

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/IWOZEZTMZUGD6CEMJDXUZ357NQ ashish

    when i click yes to continue merging it shows “cannot import c:userelcotdesktopLNK fix_twc.reg.not all data was successfully written to registry. some keys are open by the system or other processes. pls tell me suggestion asap

  • Osho_taylor

    i cant merge it because i cant open an .EXE file

  • amila

    awesome !!

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