Why do I get an error saying this file does not have a program associated with it?

by on November 22, 2010

Q: I have Windows 7 on a new Toshiba netbook. Just the other day I turned it on and tried to click on any of the icons on the desktop and start menu, and got the error: “This file does not have a program associated with it for performing this action. please install a …create an association in the Default Programs control panel.” Can you help me fix this?


4 Responses to “Why do I get an error saying this file does not have a program associated with it?”
  1.  

    What kind of file are you trying to open? If this is a Word or Excel document, do you have those programs installed?

     
  2.  

    it is pretty much any program. Firefox, word, outlook, etc. none of them will open and i had just been using it the day before with no problem…

     
  3.  

    That is really strange, did you make any changes to the computer? Install any new software etc?

     
  4.  
    Picked as best answer

    Sounds like your files have lost their association.
    1. Click the start menu.
    2. Type Default Programs.
    3. Select Associate a file type or protocol with a program
    4. In this screen you will have 3 sections: Name, Description, and Current Default.
    5. The items in Current default list with either show none or unknown application.

    If it shows as either of these then you have lost your files associations.

    To fix this you will want to open the registry.
    (WARNING: YOU WILL MODIFY SYSTEM SETTINGS, IF YOU DO NOT FEEL COMFORTABLE OR ARE NOT FAMILIAR WITH THE REGISTRY YOU SHOULD EITHER SEEK A PROFESSIONAL OR I CAN PROVIDE FURTHER REMOTE ASSISTANCE)

    1. Press the Windows key and type regedit
    2. With HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT highlight select file and export to save a copy of the registry settings, i usually save the file as todays date and the key being modifies.(You always want to save before modifying the registry.)
    3. Now navigate to the following key:
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT > exefile > shell > open > command.
    4. Double-click the (Default) value in the right hand pane and delete the current value data,
    5. Then type: “%1” %* exactly as shown including the quotes and asterisk.
    6. Now navigate to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT > .exe in the right-hand pane.
    7. Double click (default) and set (default) to “exefile” without the quotations.
    8. Exit the Registry Editor, you may need to reboot for changes to completely apply.