8 Tips to Fix Cannot Open Attachments in Outlook 2016/2013/2010

8 Tips to Fix Cannot Open Attachments in Outlook 2016/2013/2010

Learn how to fix “Cannot open attachments in outlook 2016/2013/2010” by paying close attention to the solutions provided here. You have no cause to fear that your files are permanently inaccessible

Jul 20, 2020 • Filed to: Recover & Repair Emails • Proven solutions


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Sharing files as attachments on emails has become a norm in the tech world. However, sometimes users may not be able to open the attachments sent to them. The need has therefore arisen for users to learn how to fix the issue of attachments not opening in outlook. With the wealth of information on how to fix this problem in this article, you will not be stranded.

Reasons and Fixes for Cannot Open Attachments in Outlook

This section will combine both causes and solutions. It simply means that the causes of the issue of attachments not opening in Outlook will be discussed with their practical solutions explained:

1. Unrecognized File Format:

The first major reason why you may not be able to open an attachment in outlook is that the file is in a format that your computer cannot recognize. More so, it could be that your system does not have the software necessary for opening the file format. For instance, if you have not installed an app such as Adobe Photoshop or the like and you receive a mail in the image format .psd, you cannot open it.

What to do:

2. Bad File Association or Problem with Program

Sometimes you may have the right program for opening a particular file format but still face this error. It implies that the file is not associated with the right program. You can change the program to a program that works for you.

What to do:

3. Antivirus Programs Preventing

Some antivirus programs you have installed on your system may be the reason you cannot open your attachments in Outlook. How does this work? Antivirus programs work to secure your system from all incoming data to your PC. Attachments are part of such incoming data and so in the course of doing their work, the antivirus programs may stop you from having access to your attachments. Simply disable your antivirus in this instance to check for sure if they are the reason why you can’t open the attachments or not.

What to do:

4. Compressed File

Files are usually compressed into formats that make it easier for transfers, especially if the files are very bulky or large in numbers.

What to do:

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5. Sender has an Apple Computer and You have a PC:

This is self-explanatory as the attachments created in a different OS from yours will cause a problem. Thus, if the person sending the attachment to you uses an Apple device and you use Windows, you may encounter difficulty opening such attachment. The solution to this is simple:

6. Corrupted File

If you receive an already corrupted mail as an attachment, you cannot open it because of the damage. Files become inaccessible if they have been infected with one virus or another and have thus become corrupted. Therefore, you have to do some checks so you can end up with an uncorrupted file.

What to do:

7. Outlook Add-ins

Outlook add-ins form much junk and end up preventing outlook from performing properly. You may discover that the add-ins that form part of your outlook are the reason you cannot open attachments.

What to do:

More Solutions to Fix Cannot Open Attachments in Outlook 2016/2013/2010

If you still cannot open your attachments even after the solutions above, you have to resort to the ultimate solution, which is the use of a third-party repair software for corrupt .pst file. Stellar Repair for Outlook is the tool you need for the job. This software is capable of fixing virtually all issues associated with Outlook, so you have to give it a try.

Now that you have decided to download the app, launch it and use the steps below to repair your corrupted outlook files:

Step 1. Add Corrupt File

The first window you will see on the Stellar Outlook Repair interface is the “Select PST File for Repair” window. Under it, click “Find” or “Browse” to add the corrupt file from Outlook.

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Step 2. Repair File

Start repairing the .pst files you have added by choosing the “Repair” button at the bottom of the window shown above. Wait for the files to be scanned and the errors to be fixed.

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Step 3. Preview and Save File

The next step is to view all the files that have been scanned and repaired. This tool’s interface is quite easy to navigate and understand. You will see your files displayed on left pane, the contents in the middle pane while the right pane will display the details of each .pst file

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Once you have viewed that all your files are intact, just follow this short path: “Home” > “Save Repaired File”

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The Bottom Line

Because of the importance of Outlook in the sending and receiving of emails, you cannot stop using it altogether. This is why you need the solutions provided above to fix the issue of “cannot open attachments in Outlook”. For the ultimate PST repair tool, choose Stellar Outlook Repair

Amy Dennis

staff Editor

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