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Can't open .EXE files in Windows Vista


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#1 korniceman3000

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 01:27 PM

Hi,

 

I just opened this computer I bought quite a few years ago. It is an Acer Aspire that came with pre-installed Windows Vista Home Premium 64 bit. After downloading a few essential programs like winrar, chrome, firefox, itunes, ccleaner, vlc player, panda antivirus, etc. I realized I couldn't run or open any of these programs. I went to microsoft online and found a page "Can't open .EXE files in Windows 7 or Windows Vista" and tried to follow the instructions to fix it.

 

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2688326

 

I was able to follow the procedures up until #6: Browse to and then click on the following registry key: 

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile

 

My registry editor does not show an exefile key.

 

I do not know what to do and cannot run or install anything with a .EXE

 

Please advise on how I can resolve this issue.

Thank you for your help. It is much appreciated!!



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#2 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 01:59 PM

Download this utility. Please read the instructions first.

 

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/fixexec/



#3 korniceman3000

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 03:18 PM

Hi John and thank you for the reply. I ran fixexec as you suggested and was given the following log:

 

FixExec by Lawrence Abrams (Grinler)
Copyright 2008-2016 BleepingComputer.com
More Information about FixExec can be found at this link:
 
Program started at: 05/11/2016 04:15:54 PM in x64 mode.
Windows Version: Windows Vista
 
Checking for processes to terminate before fixing executable associations.
 * No processes found to kill.
 
Resetting .EXE, .COM, & .BAT associations in the Windows Registry.
 
 
Program finished at: 05/11/2016 04:15:57 PM
Execution time: 0 hours(s), 0 minute(s), and 3 seconds(s)
 
 
Unfortunately, I am still unable to run anything with .EXE.
 
Please advise.


#4 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 03:24 PM

I am not sure what the issue is. I would first right click the Fixexe exe file and select Run As Administrator. If that still does not work then download Windows All in One Repair and select Reset File Permissions and Reset Registry Permissions. 

 

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/download/windows-repair-all-in-one/


Edited by JohnC_21, 11 May 2016 - 03:25 PM.


#5 korniceman3000

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 03:59 PM

Thank you for the reply. Unfortunately, I cannot get it to run because it is an exe.



#6 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 04:03 PM

Sorry, I forgot about that. 

 

Go here and download the zip file for the exe file association fix. Unzip and right click the reg file and select Merge. 

 

http://www.winhelponline.com/blog/file-association-fixes-for-windows-vista/



#7 korniceman3000

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 04:35 PM

Hi John and thank you for the reply. Unfortunately I still cannot run .exe  files. My antivirus came up clean as well. Any other suggestions or ideas on how I can resolve this would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thank you for the assistance!



#8 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 May 2016 - 04:48 PM

The only thing I could recommend is for you to post in the Crash Forum and see if they can detect anything from your logs. Explain you cannot run exe files and have already tried a couple of fixes that did not work. You can reference this thread.

 

Note: If you create another user account, do you have the same problem?



#9 adda11

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 11:21 AM

Hi; I saw your other post and you said you had some problems with (blocked) downloaded files. I am wondering if the .exe files you are having trouble with are just those you downloaded? I was having trouble with a file I downloaded and could neither unblock it or install/run it.

 

After looking at permissions (while logged in as adminstator and supposedly sufficient permissions) and re-opening explorer with administrative privileges (and no success) I finally solved the problem this morning by dragging the file to another drive (partition); I was able to unblock it and run it without any problems. 

 

You can create a new drive to store things on using administrative tools/disk management and run programs from there as well (I do that with with portable versions of programs or those programs that don't need to be installed). I think all of the programs you mentioned above you can get as portables . However, if you can't unblock the files (no matter what they are) you can't run them or install. That's where putting them into another drive might help and then you can spend time doing other things as you figure out the permissions issue. I hope this helps!



#10 RolandJS

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 12:15 PM

I'm wondering if it's possible, on another computer, to create a WinPE [of some sort] usb or dvd boot containing portable Windows Repair.


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#11 korniceman3000

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 02:04 PM

Hi everyone and thank you for the replies.

 

I followed what John suggested and created 2 new accounts, one administrator and the other a standard user. For some reason, i am able to install all .EXE applications as the standard user but cannot install anything as an admin....

 

I logged off both and re-logged into the original admin account and then followed Adda's suggestion and copied all the .EXE programs to a USB flash drive and that too allowed me to install directly as well!

 

It appears that I apparently do not have permission to install any programs in an admin account unless they are being run from another drive or on a standard user account?

 

Any ideas on how I can resolve this permissions issue would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you all for your assistance!



#12 RolandJS

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 02:08 PM

I'm wondering if it's possible, on another computer, to create a WinPE [of some sort] usb or dvd boot containing portable Windows Repair.

What happened when you tried the above?


"Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee."  -- Ben Franklin revisited.

http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forums/45/Computer-Technologies/

Backup, backup, backup! -- Lady Fitzgerald (w7forums)

Clone or Image often! Backup... -- RockE (WSL)


#13 korniceman3000

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 02:53 PM

Hi Roland and thank you for the reply.

 

I am still trying to figure out how to do that as many of the tutorial pages I visited were either too complicated for me to understand or had instructions that required the Vista installation disc or Vista system recovery disc, both of which did not come with the laptop since Windows can pre-installed.



#14 JohnC_21

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Posted 12 May 2016 - 05:21 PM

There are some serious permissions issues going on. In your new administrator account have you tried resetting file permissions and registry permissions using Windows All in One Repair.

 

What is really strange is a standard user user is not supposed to be able to install programs, only an admins. 



#15 korniceman3000

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Posted 13 May 2016 - 01:35 PM

I will certainly try this tool next. Currently trying to perform instructions in the Crash Bug forum.

 

It really is very strange. It is like something in Windows flipped in reverse and gave standard users admin capacity, yet, standard users cannot access admin folder...






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