How can I change or fix .lnk file associations on Windows 7?

Henry February 19, 2010
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I’ve been using a computer for several years now, so I have absolutely no excuse for this mistake. The phone rang and I hit a ok before I checked and I’ve killed Windows 7.

I was trying to get a program to open and I used Open with; I changed the *.lnk to open with the application and forgot to uncheck the Always Open With option. Now I can’t use any of my shortcuts. I know I should have doen a backup as soon as I got my system, but it doesn’t seem to like any of the CD’s I’ve tried to use to backup. I can work on that later, for now I would just like to know if there is any fix for screwing up my *.lnk files?

  1. Florence
    April 27, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    THANK YOU!!!!!

  2. Kevin Michael
    April 26, 2012 at 5:34 am

    it works but the icons are not changed

  3. Tina
    April 25, 2012 at 6:17 am

    !!!ANSWER to this QUESTION!!!

    Unfortunately, the original comment was lost when we switched comment systems. However, the solution is still here!

    Option 2:
    Download registry fix for the LNK file association here and follow instructions on the page.

    Briefly, unpack ZIP file, right-click REG file and select merge. Administrator rights required!

    • varinder
      April 26, 2012 at 9:32 am

      thnx alot

  4. Abubakkar Raheel
    April 24, 2012 at 3:37 pm

    where the hell is the answer to this question???
    i screwed up my win 7 just like Henry did..
    Now what should i do :((

    • Tina
      April 25, 2012 at 6:15 am

      Option 2: Download the registry fix for the LNK file association here, unpack ZIP file, right-click REG file and select merge, let it do it's thing and you should be good. Administrator rights required!

  5. Austin
    April 24, 2012 at 10:14 am

    What is The procedure I cant see it It just says question resolved where is the instructions To Fix?

    • Tina
      April 24, 2012 at 4:37 pm

      Sorry! We recently switched our comment system and it looks like some comments were lost.

      Option 2 is using a registry fix. You can find the fix here.

      Download the ZIP file, unpack, run the .reg file and when it asks to merge with registry, let it do that.

      Good luck!

      • bob
        April 25, 2012 at 3:49 pm

        Thanks tina!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • Shanthi Kiran
          April 27, 2012 at 6:43 pm

          Thanks Tina, it works!!!!

  6. Aashaytheronaldo
    April 15, 2012 at 6:43 pm

    thankxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx dudeeeeeeeeee

  7. Dany_bee
    April 11, 2012 at 11:02 am

    Great! All is working fine now!

  8. Coolklokan
    April 8, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    Hi, how to do this on Vista?

    • Tina
      April 9, 2012 at 6:59 am

      Same procedure. Use the registry fix (Option 2). It actually is made for Windows Vista, but works in Windows 7 too.

  9. Saffron
    April 7, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    I did this! I tried to get a DVD to run on iTunes rather than Windows Media Payer, and clicked 'open with'. It then turned EVERYTHING into iTunes! I ended up taking the easy route out and doing a system restore to yesterday, which has fixed it, although I did have to reinstall  GoogleChrome, but that wasn't a problem.

  10. USE OPTION #2
    April 6, 2012 at 4:27 am

    Just download his 2nd option.
    Then restart your computer and it works perfect.
    I don't know why windows 7 has the always open with box checked off. It screwed me up soo bad untill i downloaded option #2

  11. Menachem007
    April 3, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    It works fine.You can do it manually by deleting the "UserChoice" entry from the registry[HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerFileExts.lnkUserChoice]

  12. grateful :)
    April 1, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    Awesome..thank you. I was going crazy trying to get this fixed after my husband was on our NEW computer. Thank you thank you thank you. Second fix did the trick

  13. Nbrel12
    March 31, 2012 at 4:02 pm

    Thank you so much Aibek!! I thought my computer was screwed but then i followed your option 2 and it worked! :) Thanks again!

    • Aibek
      April 1, 2012 at 7:36 am

      glad to hear it worked)

  14. Blcb
    March 31, 2012 at 6:34 am

    All my programs had the .lnk file extension and I kept getting an adobe acrobat error message. I was in a state because I had an assignment due in and I didn't have a back-up.  I just started checking for ways to fix my computer and came across this site.  I tried option 2, turned off my computer and turned it back on and all is well, again.  Thanks for the great info, it worked.

  15. Niharikareddy Inugaala
    March 30, 2012 at 5:35 am

    thanks alottt tina....:-)

  16. Egaythorpe
    March 29, 2012 at 9:06 pm

    The guy in my it department said id have to wipe my comp, so glad i didnt ur like my jesus atm thx

  17. Ankush Nautiyal
    March 29, 2012 at 7:13 am

    Thanks a lot :)

  18. Mpho
    March 28, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Thank you so much ;)

  19. julia
    March 28, 2012 at 10:43 am

    thank you thank you thamnk you
    i mean anyone with the same problem can try the second option ...the 1st one it will take you just a few minutes to repair the problem 
    thanks a ton aibek.....:D ;) :)

    • anonsos
      April 25, 2012 at 1:44 pm

      but you should be very careful messing with your computer registry. you can really mess up your system to the point where it wont work.

  20. Shubhangijain98
    March 28, 2012 at 10:39 am

    thank you thank you thank you
    i mean anyone with the same problem can try option 2....option 1 didnt work and it took seconds for the software 2 download.....everything will be fine in 5 minutes
    aibek, thank you cho much  ;)   :D   :)

  21. junphoenix
    March 26, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    hi.... thanks a lot ... very2x much... wew ... i really thought that i will not be able to fix my problem about this lnk.,... thnx aibek...

  22. Koaywj
    March 24, 2012 at 9:17 am

    thx very much. the first option wont work most of the time so just follow the second option.

  23. pawan
    March 20, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    thanks dear Aibek.......... it resolved all problem n my tension thanks alot.....

  24. Adarsh
    March 19, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    thanx a lot.. :)

  25. F Syedcool7
    March 18, 2012 at 11:36 am

    i am so happy now...thankxx alot..i dont know u but thanks alot again..Aibek

  26. HMMG
    March 18, 2012 at 8:24 am

    Thanks a lot. You re a saint.

  27. Lesa G
    March 17, 2012 at 9:00 pm

    The 2nd option It worked like a charm!

  28. Brigitte
    March 12, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    Thanks so much.  After reading all comments, I tried the second solution first even though I was afraid I would screw things up even worse.  Worked like a charm !

    • Tina
      March 12, 2012 at 9:06 pm

      Glad it worked, Brigitte! :)

  29. nikolas
    March 9, 2012 at 9:39 pm

     Please help!Which program opens *.lnk file types?

    • Tina
      March 10, 2012 at 7:33 pm


      LNK file types aren't really files, they are just shortcuts that link to programs or files. Please use the registry fix, i.e. option 2. This should fix the issue, as many people who have commented before you found. Good luck!

  30. Tmany
    March 8, 2012 at 1:51 am

    Thank you Aibek!!!!! Option 2 worked for me! I searched many websites with no help, until i found this one:) THank you again!

  31. Piyu_arora1997
    March 5, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    nothing is working all icons in start menu and desktop have changed adobe even vlc daemon tools bittorrent are affected neither 2 options is working

    • Tina
      March 6, 2012 at 7:04 pm


      do you have any idea what caused the issue in the first place?

      Did you try Windows System Restore to go back to a previous Windows restore point? Follow the instructions in this article: How To Fix Your PC Using Windows Restore in XP, Vista & 7
      Good luck!

  32. Samratshashi
    March 3, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    2nd one worked for windows 7. thanks a ton.

  33. Shahbaz T K
    March 2, 2012 at 7:41 am

    Thank you so much Aibek for the Option 2 and Tina for recommending it. Much appreciated :)

  34. Waylonp123
    March 1, 2012 at 12:13 am

    i have a simaler problen i set winrar to openall game and simler files and cant figer out how to fix it

  35. tune-chi
    February 26, 2012 at 5:38 pm

    my God!!!!!!! you guys are wonderful.... i thank God that i logged into this site. i had the same lnk problem and i just followed the link below, ran the application, restarted my system, annnnnnnnddd!!!!! whaaalaaaaa am back on...... once again guys thanks alot

  36. Nihar
    February 26, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    thanks a lo!!!! the 2nd option did work for me!!!! :)

  37. dude
    February 20, 2012 at 4:13 pm

    Aibek, youre the best! Thank you so much

  38. Chase
    February 20, 2012 at 4:14 am

    Worked Perfectly!

  39. Leon le
    February 14, 2012 at 11:38 am

    thank you so much it works =]

  40. kirat
    February 14, 2012 at 7:47 am

    im reallllllllllyyy thankful to this website ... i was in trouble but now im so happy for solution i got wiith the help of thanks... wishing you more success in the future

  41. Abhiroop De
    February 6, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    Thank you so much...I was really scared...thanks a lot.

  42. Khat_182001
    February 5, 2012 at 8:56 am

    Thank you aibek your a life saver :) it really helps

  43. Enviroguy2222
    February 2, 2012 at 11:49 pm

    By the way you are a genius. You saved me alot of money, time and panic!!!!!!!!!

    • Aibek
      February 3, 2012 at 3:52 am

      glad could be helpful

  44. Enviroguy2222
    February 2, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    I could not get my start menu icons to work and when I clicked on them I would get an error that said something about Java  (TM) 6 Update 3, blah, blah that downloaded just before I had this problem. The icons all turned into java coffe cups that did not work.  I fixed it by deleting that new Java version AND then clicking on the Option 2 link that you suggested. I hit the "run" button and poof the Start Menu icons now work and open up the respective files. Now, how can I change the Start Menu icons to look like they did before instead of the new, blank sheets of paper-type of icons?

  45. Aibek
    February 1, 2012 at 8:44 am

    did you try the fix we posted here?
    If this started happening recently I suggest trying System Restore first. To access System Restore right click My Computer icon on the Desktop and select Properties
    Click on System Protection and you should see System restore option. Follow restore procedure.


  46. Thomas
    January 29, 2012 at 11:09 am

    Thanks sooooooo much Aibek I couldn't find a solution anywhere :D

  47. Arno25
    January 24, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Thank you so much. It fixed everything ;) I think that i shoud rewrite my windows ...

  48. Marco_vintimilla
    January 23, 2012 at 1:13 am

    Hello!!! What a great help! I fixed my PC in 5 seconds. Thanks!!!

  49. Jonie
    January 16, 2012 at 10:34 am

    What if I cannot find the .lnk file extension?

    • Aibek
      January 16, 2012 at 12:10 pm

      try the option with the download.

  50. Analeadellinger624
    January 13, 2012 at 5:22 am

    Thank-you a million times over, I have piles of h-work to do and every file was opening in photo gallery as blank--this fix saved me money

    • Aibek
      January 13, 2012 at 10:20 am

      you're welcome!

  51. Jay Ramdas
    January 11, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Aibek thnx for solution

  52. Jerome Bernard
    January 11, 2012 at 11:05 am
    thank you so much!
    providing tech support to my girlfriend through TeamViewer.
    the registry edit file you provided was perfect.
    thank you!

  53. Davidstaar
    January 10, 2012 at 8:19 am

    Thank you

  54. Abulnass
    January 1, 2012 at 8:11 pm

    Dear Aibek ,
    Thank you ver much for this helpful topic , thanks thanks ....

    • Aibek
      January 2, 2012 at 2:27 pm

      you're welcome!

  55. Kabuga usher
    January 1, 2012 at 12:14 pm

    many thanx,
    i solved the problem with in a min using the second option.

    Happy new year and thanx indeed for your great help.

    Usher Kagz K

  56. Joeri
    December 29, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Hi all,


    I have a same problem....i need to remove unwanted program for .Dll

    I've successfully followed these steps:


    Then I checked the
    Recommended Program List for .Dll file. But unwanted program was still
    there in list. So i thought changes might be reflected after reboot.
    But even after reboot it was showing the program in list.

    I've again confirmed that key is deleted or not...key was removed we need to follow some other steps in addition to
    aforementioned steps???

    I also tried Ccleaner but it doesnt help also.

    Any help in this regard will be greatly appreciated. 

    • Aibek
      December 30, 2011 at 6:55 am

      Hi Joeri,

      After you made the changes what happens when you trey to open the .dll file? Does it work as expected? Any similar with files other than .dll?
      The fact that the program is listed under Recommended Program List isn't really a big deal.


  57. CB
    December 29, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    Correction.  It was the 2nd one that worked thanks.

  58. CB
    December 29, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    Thank you soooo much. The first one worked.  Happy New Year

  59. P_hariyogi
    December 28, 2011 at 4:38 am


  60. Cehtrixz
    December 17, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    how can i fix .lnk files

      December 21, 2011 at 1:21 am

      Hello, what is your operating system?  The reason I ask is because this files are different for operating system.  If you are using windows 7, you can use the vista version.  These are the links:

      For Wiindows 7:

      For Vista:

      For XP:

      What you do is the following:

      -- visit any of the links according to your operating system
      -- scroll down until you find the lnk link
      -- click on it to download
      -- file will be downloaded in a zip extension
      -- once file is downloaded, unzip with windows tool
      -- double click on extracted file with a .reg extension
      -- when it asks you if you want to merge with registry, select yes
      -- restart your computer

      Let me know if it works.

  61. Subhash Mudaliyar
    December 16, 2011 at 11:54 am


  62. keitaro
    December 16, 2011 at 7:45 am

    somebody please tell me what i should do?!! have the exact same problem but dont see the solution anywhere :(

  63. Hajimirzaei Dvm
    December 14, 2011 at 2:20 am

    Thank yot so much from Aibek. for 2th solution.

  64. Artyom
    December 13, 2011 at 9:53 am

    Thank you so much,

    you are help me much more.


  65. mamali
    December 10, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    woooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww ....tx for your help ....txxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx bro

  66. Tyler
    December 9, 2011 at 11:40 pm

    Thank you so much it worked :)

  67. Xihongw
    December 8, 2011 at 6:11 am

    Thank you so much, it is really works for win7

  68. Aurelle
    December 7, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    Thxxx so much for helping,Option 2 wrked so quickly and so well!

  69. Jeremyk
    December 3, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    I got this same problem because of a virus fix. I added a couple default programs in the set association panel but obviously no cigar. I was happy to find this fix but unfortunatly I still have the exact same problem after amending the fix into my registry. I'd take your advice and start a new thread but I don't know what to ask and you guys seem to be on top on things. Any other ideas?

    • Jay
      December 4, 2011 at 2:59 pm

      Restore you pc, using system restore to a restore point when it worked fine without any problem.

    • Anonymous
      December 4, 2011 at 6:07 pm

      Download FixExeLnk
      Its in french, so after extraction click on FixExeLnk.exe and then check the three box and click on appliquer. 

    • Anonymous
      December 4, 2011 at 6:07 pm

      Download FixExeLnk
      Its in french, so after extraction click on FixExeLnk.exe and then check the three box and click on appliquer. 

      December 4, 2011 at 9:33 pm

      Hello, was your computer infected really bad?  How was it cleaned?  Is your operating system windows 7?  Can you download superantispyware and give your computer a full scan?  This is the link for portable version of the program.  It will download with a file with the .com extension, so you shouldn't have a problem running it.  Because it is the portable version of program, you can run it from a flashdrive.  You do not have to already is.

      This is what you can do:

      -- download program either to computer or flashdrive
      -- double click on the file downloaded
      -- enter password if needed
      -- click on ok for default language
      -- click on preferences and make sure to only leave unmarked the following:
      ignore system restore
      -- click on the home icon
      -- make sure to select complete scan
      -- click on scan
      -- let full scan complete and remove any entries found (if any)
      -- restart system to complete cleaning of entries found.

      I am just trying to make sure your system is clean.  Ok, now download the portable edition of re-enable:

      Once program is downloaded, do the following:

      -- double click on file downloaded
      -- enter password if needed
      -- click on run
      -- make sure all options are marked
      -- click on re-enable
      -- once that is done, on menu click on Tools
      -- select repair explorer.exe startup problems

      Let me know if it was fixed or if  superantispyware found any entries.  Reply to my message instead of just replying.  If you reply to my message, I'll get your answer.  If you just reply, I will not.

  70. aboraheal
    December 1, 2011 at 11:10 am

    thank you

    the first option worked for me on windows 7

    thank you

  71. David
    November 30, 2011 at 10:00 am

    Great solution, one of my colleagues had managed to set all his shortcuts to open with nero and this fixed it instantly, thanks!!

  72. Lilis10lt
    November 29, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Thank you, thank so much you save me :-)

  73. Satish Eee32
    November 28, 2011 at 10:20 am

    Thanks for the above.... it worked very nice.

  74. Thimza
    November 21, 2011 at 6:28 am

    ROCK STAR... thanx worked for me

  75. Shuklayogesh
    November 9, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    your solution was very accurate

  76. Han_bmb
    November 8, 2011 at 4:12 am

    my comment:(

  77. Boroo
    November 8, 2011 at 3:33 am

    Hello. I from Mongolia. Just had a similar problem. All my .lnk turned into an .Lnk . . . turned them into an MSWORD program executable. i tried to fix into control panel, but my  system language is in Korean. that was very hard to me. cuz i'm Mongolian. i dunno Korean 100%. then i used that download link and now everything is back to normal,,thanks a
    lot for that,even tech guys could'nt help me with this one,,thanks again

  78. madhavan
    November 7, 2011 at 7:50 am

    how to convert lnk files back to defult above said is not working.. all my desktop icons and the icons in start have been changed to lnk files

    • Aibek
      November 8, 2011 at 4:02 am

      please refer to the very first answer/comment here for an easy fix.

  79. maddy
    November 5, 2011 at 4:54 am

    thanks a lot man ur awesome nice work keep it up

  80. Thilina Wijewardana
    November 2, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    Thanks a lot man! It fixed my problem.U genius boy!

  81. Ray
    October 31, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    Splendid!!! It worked!!! I downloaded the software and when i restarted everything was back to normal!!! Thanks a lot

  82. Akash Nagar
    October 30, 2011 at 10:23 am

    Thanx Dude.. it's working... ;)

    October 24, 2011 at 8:09 pm

    The link works perfect in windows 7 and vista
    to OP: Much thanks!

  84. Vaggelisgamatos
    October 24, 2011 at 8:34 am

    wowwwwwwwwwwww! Perfect!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  85. Cire_raltiz
    October 24, 2011 at 6:36 am

    I had thesame problem and i tried your solution.It really worked. Thank you for posting such helpful information

  86. Eminem_aspirine
    October 22, 2011 at 12:22 pm

    Thank u soooooooooooooooooooooo much dude it had really troubled me alot thanks it really works......

  87. Aeatot08
    October 19, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    i have the same problem 'bout the .lnk file type, at this moment i tried to re-open one of my apps using (open with) and i choose windows media player after clicking it all of the icons were gone to windows movie player at first they were all internet explorer icons,what should i do?help plss..

  88. Tom Joseph
    October 18, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Thanks.. its  working for win 7 ...superb

  89. Tom Joseph
    October 18, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    Thanks.. its  working for win 7 ...superb

  90. Suraz Ltk
    October 12, 2011 at 3:04 am

    thaks you very much for the idea because after  a long process i  found your solution it was done esily.

  91. Webned1
    October 10, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    thanks alot ,same problem as all the others.
    was breaking my brain to solve this problem, untill i d-loaded this little tool

    love you allways

  92. Gloriosojoseph66
    October 9, 2011 at 7:51 am

    dude thank you ! i the first one does not work on my pc so i downloaded the it work thanks !!

  93. Angealine1990
    October 6, 2011 at 4:12 am

    Yesssssssssss i had this problem a long time ago... thksssssss a lot

  94. Madebyjapan
    October 4, 2011 at 10:51 pm

    Whenever I do option 1 I choose the LNK file but when I click choose program it opens another tab asking what program to open this file...
    whenever I do option 2 I try to change the icon for example but it never saves of changes

    • Tina
      October 5, 2011 at 7:32 pm

      What exactly happens when you apply the registry fix of option 2? It should automatically fix your lnk file associations.

      • Gloriosojoseph66
        October 9, 2011 at 7:53 am

        yes it automatically fix

  95. Melchizedek_43
    October 4, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    thanks a lot... 
    i fixed it..

  96. Aibek
    October 4, 2011 at 8:18 am

    glad it worked!

  97. demmostu
    October 3, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    After download the option 2, what should i do then?? i dont understand what do u mean by unzip it, and run it. It will make necessary changes to the registry. help me help me

    • Tina
      October 3, 2011 at 6:38 pm

      The file in option two is a ZIP archive. You can unzip it (open it) using free tools like 7-zip or Windows' WinZip. After extracting the archive, you will have the actual registry fix file. Just double-click it, it should ask whether it shall merge with your registry and you need to confirm this. That's how the fix is applied.

  98. Oskari
    October 1, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Thank you so much!

  99. Kudzie
    September 29, 2011 at 10:44 am


  100. Sibi
    September 27, 2011 at 11:20 am

    Thanks man. .  Great one. .. Worked well just like that. . .    :)

  101. newboy
    September 26, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Option 2 work well with me aswell... the first option is quite easy for us newcomers however doesn't shed light to the program to select. in the case that there was a program associated with it, how do you change it using option one to return to original i.e. shortcut file without editing the registry?

    • Aibek
      October 3, 2011 at 12:21 pm

      If you don't want to return to the registry than you need to know which program used to be associated with particular file type and re-associate (using right-click menu) it for each broken file type.

  102. Specialangel2000
    September 24, 2011 at 12:52 am

    YAY Hooray......Even my computer guy could not tell me what to do. Have been going nuts with this for months..........Voila.......the zip undid all the mess and corrected it all. THANK YOU!!!!

    • Tina
      September 25, 2011 at 9:03 am

      Glad it worked! :)

  103. Ralph
    September 22, 2011 at 11:03 am

    Aibek, you seriously just saved my life. I've spent the last 45 minutes looking for a solution to this problem. Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou

  104. Ralph
    September 22, 2011 at 11:03 am

    Aibek, you seriously just saved my life. I've spent the last 45 minutes looking for a solution to this problem. Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou

    • Aibek
      September 23, 2011 at 11:07 am

      you're welcome :)

  105. Ckshea
    September 21, 2011 at 1:49 pm

    It didnt work for my lnk files(folders) in my mobile phone(appear as removable disk). Any idea? :(

    • Tina
      September 21, 2011 at 9:10 pm


      sounds like you are having a different issue. What mobile operating system are you running on your phone? Since you are unlikely to receive a response within this comment thread, I recommend you to ask a new question. Please provide a thorough description of your issue and what you have already tried to fix it. Thank you!

      • Ckshea
        September 24, 2011 at 5:21 pm

        Now my problem was solved. Thanks for your advice! :)

  106. Switchfoot2093
    September 19, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    it's actually works! thank you so much! :) I thought I need to reformat my PC. *Lol

  107. bash
    September 19, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    I am a same problem have changed *.lnk file to microsoft word somehow now i can i bring it to default and what is the default file which i should assocaite *.lnk file to ? Please let me know

    • Tina
      September 20, 2011 at 6:40 pm


      please use the registry fix described in the second option. This one has worked for dozens of people that have commented before you.

  108. Dan
    September 18, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    Awesome, it worked so cool.

  109. Jeremy Atkins
    September 17, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    Also, the download for Option 2 is for VISTA. Not Windows 7. Could you please post the link to the WINDOWS 7 version of the program?

    • Jeremy Atkins
      September 17, 2011 at 10:47 pm

      Apparently, the file name is misleading, because it DOES work for Windows 7 as well as Vista.

  110. Jeremy Atkins
    September 17, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    Wait, so what is .lnk supposed to open with in the first place? Option 1 would only work if you know that critical bit of information.

    • Tina
      September 18, 2011 at 9:35 am

      Ture. Option 1 doesn't work for lnk files because they are just shortcuts that don't open one specific program.

  111. Cynthiamacias1
    September 15, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    I Need HElP ASAP for some weird reason my laptop will not let me open any kind of file is there someting i can do to fix it :c.. I tried somee websites but non of help seem to be any help. 

    • Aibek
      September 16, 2011 at 12:56 pm

      As a first step I would suggest trying system restore. If that doesn't help please submit this as a new question on MakeUseOf Answers,

      Make suer to include more detailed information about the problem and things you have tried so far to fix it.


  112. Tina
    September 14, 2011 at 2:26 pm


    you also submitted this as a question and it will be published asap.

  113. Utahn0707
    September 13, 2011 at 3:33 pm

    Is this link safe to use on a shared work network?

    • Tina
      September 14, 2011 at 2:25 pm

      It is safe!

  114. Kripalsinhzala7
    September 11, 2011 at 9:06 am


  115. Surya Uppala
    September 10, 2011 at 12:51 pm

    Is there a any fix for *.lnk problem for Windows 2008 operating system? 

  116. Rni
    September 10, 2011 at 11:22 am

    thanks for the info...fixed.. :)

  117. Eline Waarsenburg-Nauta
    September 6, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Fixed! Thanks!

  118. Snadarsh33
    September 3, 2011 at 11:18 am

    I found an easy solution.It is really very easy 

    Go to the link below

  119. Juul
    August 27, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Option 2 workss ! 
    searched all over the internet
    and it is so simple.

    • Tina
      August 27, 2011 at 5:10 pm

      Thanks for the feedback Juul and glad it worked for you!

  120. MIkee Lao
    August 26, 2011 at 5:40 am

    thank you so much .... it works....

  121. Jaslina
    August 21, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    with what program do a open the ink file with

    • Tina
      August 22, 2011 at 4:10 pm

      None. You have to use the registry fix. You can download it using this link:

  122. Quest 129
    August 21, 2011 at 7:50 pm

    i don't work for me

    • Tina
      August 22, 2011 at 4:10 pm

      Did you try the registry fix? Download it using this link:

  123. Quest 129
    August 21, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    i don't get it

  124. Quest 129
    August 21, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    i don't get it

  125. neeraj
    August 20, 2011 at 4:03 pm

    thanks for giving nice
    solution ....

  126. MBM
    August 19, 2011 at 8:39 am

    thank you so much, i did exactly the same thing and found all my short cuts useless, option 2 worked for me- simply run & restart :)

  127. AYRgb
    August 17, 2011 at 6:12 am

    thank u...solved everything
    very helpful :D:D:D:D:D:D:D

  128. Rashid Mamadeus
    August 15, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Worked like a charm (option 2)! A year after your post, still another very positive feedback is added to your account! Probably not the last. Cheers!

    Greetings from Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  129. nb
    August 14, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    oh my gooooodness thank you SO MUCH!! your a lifesaver!

  130. Cenamarine11
    August 8, 2011 at 10:07 am

    this thing dident fucking work u asshole

  131. Meena_vora55
    August 5, 2011 at 9:36 pm


    Thanks for the link posted at top - the 1st did not work for me but the download did. This is after asking the peeps frm my antivirus company who could not help me and it took them a few weeks to realise the problem. Even then, they could still not help me!!

    • Tina
      August 6, 2011 at 2:15 am

      Glad the registry fix worked for you, Meena.
      Maybe you should share the solution with the folks from your antivirus company.

  132. Computer_Girl
    August 3, 2011 at 9:43 am

    Thank you so much... It worked for me.. cheers !

  133. kibi
    August 2, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    Option two worked best. Thanks man! Your a genius. Thanks for sharing this great stuff for us. Bless You!

  134. Yuval1967
    August 1, 2011 at 6:49 pm

    thanks so much  its working great

  135. Davidjbrock
    August 1, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Thanks so much...  2 hours of trying solve my computer-illiterate bro-in-law's problem over the phone... banging my head on the desk... this solved it in 2 minutes. You're the best!

  136. Marthaarman
    July 27, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    Thx bro... You really helper me out!

  137. Asdfasfg
    July 26, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    worked like a charm :)

  138. Matthew
    July 23, 2011 at 10:31 am


  139. Chrisa
    July 22, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    thanks a lot !!!!!!! You are a jenious!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    no 2 option it worked!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  140. Ajay Daniel
    July 20, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    last month i installed linux ubuntu after few days i removed but the drive in which ubuntu is installes , that drive is not show. so plz help me

    • Tina
      July 20, 2011 at 11:13 pm


      this is a different question. I recommend you to post a new question using the respective link in the top left on the Answers page.

    • Aibek
      July 21, 2011 at 9:38 am


      please ask it as a new question on MakeUseOf Answers,


  141. Phatak Tejas
    July 17, 2011 at 4:30 am

    Brilliant. This works ! :)

  142. Rodden Rufaro Chikonzo
    July 11, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    thanks a lot it worked. may the good Lord Jesus Christ bless you with the desires of your heart and perfect all that concerns you.

  143. Shill3
    July 8, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    So I am guessing you have to pay for this program once you have downloaded the link? Right? Any other options?

  144. Paulntwali2006
    July 5, 2011 at 8:37 am

    Thank you very much Aibek for your great support on .lnk extension, you really turn the dark day into yellow day. My name is J.Paul (Rwanda -Africa)

    • Aibek
      July 5, 2011 at 10:50 am

      you're welcome

  145. Wan5239
    July 4, 2011 at 6:00 am

    solution no 2 work like a charm..... TQ

  146. Mithunlal
    July 1, 2011 at 8:37 am

    ya i downloaded those but still not working ya

  147. Mithun lal
    July 1, 2011 at 8:35 am

    i am suffering from the same problem .....i am not able to download those ,,,it says its unavailable now ,,,,,

  148. Jhoevz
    June 21, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    I've been searching the web for the same problem and thanks to Aibek for sharing the my unit is fully operational once again..Thank you so much..

  149. Sudiptapjain
    June 19, 2011 at 11:30 am


  150. Rgomezeti
    June 16, 2011 at 9:29 am

    Thank you so much Aibek, option 2 worked perfectly.. After searching for about 5 hours for a solution that works you've saved the day. Thanks man.


    • Aibek
      June 16, 2011 at 1:07 pm

      you're welcome!

      • Newomegasoft81
        June 17, 2011 at 6:33 pm

        you're the man....keep it up.thanks a lot....

  151. Norm
    June 14, 2011 at 4:07 am

    Thank you! The LnkFix download did the job splendidly!

  152. Darling120
    June 14, 2011 at 12:46 am

    Hi Tina,

    Thank you very much.
    I GOT IT


    • Tina
      June 14, 2011 at 2:07 am

      Glad it worked for you, but I cannot take the praise for it. Aibek documented the fix first! :)

  153. @YOju4n
    June 12, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    THX!!! it really worked ... 

    i really thx u.. i have this issue at my job's computer... it was dramatic .. really .. i didnt know wat to do xD...

    but now the problem its solved.. thx u again :D 

  154. Richard
    June 10, 2011 at 9:27 am

    Yes . I tried the first option
    In selection the appropriate program I had only the option of Adobe reader and looking other program on internet m so i tried with Adobe reader. It changed the icon to adobe reader but I still have the same problem.
    Please I don't know if i have to browse to internet to get the appropriate program? Which program I should select in doing so?
    And using the link in the second option you mentioned, it did not work for me.
    Probably I am not using it properly. I am a novice in computer but willing to learn.
    Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

  155. Richard
    June 10, 2011 at 1:25 am

    Hi Tina,
    I was trying to download a file using winzip, it turn all the file on my desktop into a same icon, when it tried to fix the problem by cliking many buttoms, the icons were changed to  microsoft word default. at this time i am not able to use many of my files.
    Please I am wondering if you could help me.

    • Tina
      June 10, 2011 at 2:44 am


      did you try the registry fix that Aibek linked to in the very first comment within this thread?

  156. Anton Blaberg
    June 8, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    All of my shortcuts are .lnk files so I follow all of ur steps when u went into the big list were I choosed the .lnk place u know I couldn't choose 1 program because all programs are diffrent so I cant just choose Windows media player for example XD.  Is there any programs that opens the shortcut like the regular file does? I just want to reset .lnk to normal shortcut again!

    • Tina
      June 8, 2011 at 9:39 pm


      you need to run the registry fix that Aibek linked to. There is no program that runs lnk files, but the problem can be fixed by editing registry entries, which the above fix does automatically for you.

  157. Mnsrinivas
    May 26, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    thanks alot my god thank u for tht

  158. Ecaterina_c
    May 20, 2011 at 11:02 am

     Hi! I have a problem I cannot solve... I selected skype to open .Ink files as default, it was a mistake and now everything opens with it even Documents... I don't know how to fix it. Is any program I can download to fix it or can anybody tells me what can do? Pleeeeeeease! Thank you!

    • Tina
      May 20, 2011 at 4:40 pm


      did you try the second (registry) fix posted by Aibek?

  159. Muhammad Aizat Bin Sanudin
    May 17, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    I opened the zip file to my desktop like you said and then double clicked the icon but still get the "windows cannot open whatever file with the .reg extension" what would I associate that with?
    Same thing happens with the other file.


    • Tina
      May 18, 2011 at 4:12 pm

      Did you try to run the file as Administrator?

  160. Obr159
    May 7, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    thanks to my superhero: D very highly here within easy for me to beat those two at thepossibility dikyekuji

  161. Emmie
    May 3, 2011 at 9:21 am

    Option 2 worked for me! Thanks a million.

  162. Tasnee
    April 30, 2011 at 7:51 am


    • Aibek
      May 1, 2011 at 7:37 am

      you're welcome. glad it worked.

  163. Lion
    April 28, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    Will this fix program restore the .crt association on Windows 7 64 bit? Currently it is pointing to notepad and it want change to anything else.

    • Tina
      April 29, 2011 at 4:40 am


      I'm not sure I understand your question. Is a file with .crt file extension pointing to notepad? The tool will only fix the .lnk file association. I think you should ask a new question. Please click the respective button on the top of the page and fill in the question form. Thank you!

  164. Bradmeister11
    April 22, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    It wont even let me get onto the internet to download that, im using another computer. is there a way around this?

    • Tina
      April 26, 2011 at 6:21 am

      Use another computer to download the file, put it on a USB flash drive and run it from there.

  165. Louxtreme
    April 15, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    Dear Aibek
    I tried to transfer Games folder from one computer (windows 7 office 2007 professional) to another computer running the same systems and software but i keep getting a
    CANT OPEN THIS FILE .lnk do you want to use the web or select a installed program.

    They are are standard window games eg spider solitaire, why they didnt come installed i dont know, why i cant transfer them i dont know?

    I am a novice at this stuff, HELP please what do i do

    • Tina
      April 15, 2011 at 6:52 pm


      could it be that you didn't move the games themselves, but only the shortcuts (.lnk files) to the original source?

    • Aibek
      April 16, 2011 at 11:46 am

      Hi there,

      You can't transfer the files this way. there is an alternative way to
      add Windows Games to your syste. It's very easy. Please ask this as anew
      question on MakeUseOf Answers,

      Your questions should say, How Can I Add Default Windows 7 Games To My


  166. Gc_bamrah
    April 14, 2011 at 10:23 am

    hey abek thax soooooo lot it really works...........

    • Aibek
      April 14, 2011 at 4:40 pm

      you're welcome!

  167. ayebab
    April 9, 2011 at 2:10 am

    i thought i have to reformat may computer to fix my problem. thanks to you guys!!!

  168. Kp
    March 29, 2011 at 7:23 pm


  169. Ed
    March 10, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    Aibek,thanks. It worked for me(windows 7).

  170. Anshul
    March 8, 2011 at 5:30 am

    Aibek...!!! U R AWESOME.....!!!

  171. M k a
    March 6, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    Omg i was trying to figure how to fix it for the past 4 hours and boom i came here and i just downloaded the fix and i lanched it and restarted and ! it worked like magic

    thanks alot :D

    (on windows 7 32bit laptop)

    • Aibek
      March 7, 2011 at 5:54 am

      glad it worked for you as well :-)

  172. Diwaker26069
    March 5, 2011 at 8:32 am

    thanks a lot

    • Aibek
      March 5, 2011 at 8:42 am

      you're welcome

  173. Marian_stoica
    February 28, 2011 at 9:25 pm

    I CANT BILIEVE !!! THE DOWNLOADABLE LINK IT WORK'S ! I just run it and next I restart the computer . (windows 7) it works !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Tina
      March 1, 2011 at 1:43 am

      Glad it worked and thanks for the feedback! :)

    • Aibek
      March 1, 2011 at 10:51 am

      glad to hera you could make use of it :-)

  174. Rob321-
    February 21, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    what program do i browse for to open the .lnk files with?

    • Tina
      March 1, 2011 at 1:52 am

      Per default, lnk files are not associated with any program. However, since you cannot remove a file type association, only replace it, I guess the easiest way is to run the .exe file.

  175. Carolyn
    February 19, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    What program am I supposed to open the .lnk file in?

    • Tina
      March 1, 2011 at 1:53 am

      With no program. Unfortunately, Windows 7 doesn't offer this option in 'Set Associations'. Thus it's best to run the .exe file that fixes the registry.

  176. Dameshamason
    February 18, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    what do people
    be so mean

  177. Dameshamason
    February 18, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    yea u can i do it

  178. Fredde-swe
    February 16, 2011 at 2:12 pm

    Rox, I went here and this fixed my friends problem (windows 7).. Thank you !!!!!!!!<3

  179. Krukur
    February 8, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    I actualy found the option 1 before I found option 2 here on this site, however I didnt know what program was supposed to open the .lnk I dont know if any1 else had that problem, but perhaps that would be a nice thing to mention in your glorious fixing post

    Thanks for the great fix!

  180. yelena
    February 7, 2011 at 1:01 pm


  181. Rahmansharjil
    January 23, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    WOW............thanks alot,,,,,,i m able to change.....

  182. Khepera
    December 22, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    Using Windows 7 and the downloaded file will not open. It asks which program created it an I don't know what to open. Or I get a pop up asking to run or save and when I choose run the same menu pops up. What am I doing differently than everyone else?

    • Tina
      December 26, 2010 at 5:29 am


      it sounds like in your case, the .exe file extension was changed. We had a similar question before. Maybe the answers given there can help you. Check it out:

      Please ask a new question if you are still stuck with the problem. Please describe the symptoms and what may have caused them as good as you can.

      Good luck!

  183. Hiaces
    December 20, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    I thank you so much you saved my computer and my hinny. Its almost christmas to. Happy Christmas!!

  184. Deron
    December 19, 2010 at 12:48 pm

    i need help my laptop keeping opening with the same file and i dont know what to do

    • Tina
      December 19, 2010 at 6:36 pm


      did you follow the steps outlined above? What happened?

  185. Sargeant
    December 17, 2010 at 12:20 am

    thanks alot almost cried

  186. Mynofa
    December 12, 2010 at 3:35 am

    I had the same problem, and it's fixed now. Thanx a lot.

  187. Shubharaj99
    December 6, 2010 at 4:30 pm

    thanks a lot brother

  188. Gopikrish2000
    December 5, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    Thanks a lottttttttttttttttttttttttttttttttt , really helped me by downloading that reg, once again thanks a lot

  189. Matthew
    December 4, 2010 at 1:46 am

    Fixed for me too, thanks!

  190. Sarahmichellewalsh
    November 30, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    Hi, I followed the steps up until "Select the program you would like to open *.lnk file types. ".... how do I know what program I want to use to open them???
    Please help :(

  191. Fredy
    November 27, 2010 at 6:13 am

    i have try it on win 7 & it works. thank you.

  192. matahari
    November 26, 2010 at 12:52 pm

    THANK YOU !!!! THANK YOU!!! THANK YOU!!! This really worked. God bless.

    • Tina
      November 26, 2010 at 5:04 pm

      Glad to hear that MakeUseOf Answers could help! Thank you for taking the time to let us know. :)

  193. Cdnfbi
    November 15, 2010 at 1:05 am

    A friend called me in deep desparation to come over and fix her computer "All my icons changed now I can't run anything. All my icons are changed, my computer is broken". A quick teamviewer session proved she had changed her LNK association and your ZIP file was the quick fix ..... I took initial credit for being a hero, but then gave the credit for supplying the answer !!! THANKS <-that's a big thanks

  194. Animeshlodha
    November 8, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    thanks a lot really helped. use it without any doubt works for all operating systems..once again thanks a lot

  195. Nitinchaudhary48
    November 4, 2010 at 8:20 pm

    what about window xp sp2... i ve a pen drive all the folders are of a shortcut icon.. and all are .lnk file...give me the solution coz these are my to change them into original format

  196. Vikas Gupta
    October 18, 2010 at 5:26 pm

    Thanks dear it worked it saved me from formating my system window.
    really thanks......

  197. Lesdubose
    October 13, 2010 at 6:38 am

    I couldn't find an option to select, so I just used your download and presto! Everything was back to normal. Thank you

  198. S Johnston1
    October 12, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    I understand all the stuff in the Option 1 section, but when I get to

    - Click on the extension (to select it) and then click on "Change Program."
    - Select the program you would like to open *.lnk file types.
    - Click on OK.

    Which program do I select? It's only giving me the option of opening things in internet explorer which doesn't help the situation.

    Option 2 is a forbidden website apparently too (403 error)

  199. Thepretty1024
    October 12, 2010 at 7:44 am

    Thank you so so much!!!

  200. Babul4uonly
    October 8, 2010 at 9:58 am

    thanks a lot...
    it works well in windows 7

  201. Dave SG
    October 6, 2010 at 9:12 pm

    Aibek ..thanks a lot..i really thought i screwed up...googled the problem ..and stumbled upon laptop is saved...and btw for those whose web browsers wont even open due to the messing up of the shortcuts i recommend u right click on internet explorer( or whatever was left of it ) and u will find the inprivate browsing window..use it to download...and it works!!! relieved...thanks again aibek

    • Aibek
      October 7, 2010 at 5:24 am

      you're welcome. glad it helped.

      • Richard
        February 14, 2011 at 2:37 pm

        Aibek. I did option one as you said but when it comes down to the option of choosing a program that opens all the lnk files it confuses me. since i somehow managed to make ALL my shortcuts lnk files.

        What should i do?

  202. Vetti08
    September 29, 2010 at 11:12 am


    and btw windows 7 users use

  203. Boris
    September 23, 2010 at 11:15 pm

    I prefer to use the first option since it's safer, but you didn't write what program should be assossoated with .lnk file. Please clarify...

  204. Risa
    September 18, 2010 at 7:48 am

    Thankyou so much! That worked wonders on my laptop!!!! I am SO relieved!

  205. Studentkings
    September 17, 2010 at 2:05 am

    Thank A lOt...
    You are the best...
    I love you...

  206. Dev Cool1
    September 14, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    Thanks a lot...
    I faced problem with .link file system...
    But it solved for me...
    Your zip file is awsome...
    Thanks buddy...

  207. Meli
    September 13, 2010 at 11:14 pm

    Aibeck, I couldn't thank you enough for that program. I am not technically savvy at all so when all my files changed I freaked.:)

    • Aibek
      September 14, 2010 at 8:25 am

      I am glad you found it helpful. In case you experience any other
      issues don't hesitate to ask for a fix on MakeUseOf Answers,

  208. Louis Botes
    September 8, 2010 at 7:54 am

    Wow. Fantastic. As soon as I logged in with Teamviewer on my customer machine, I was breaking out sweats wondering how I'm gonna fix this. Thanks to google that made me find this article so quickly. And a fantastic website that made the effort to post this topic :)

    • Tina
      September 8, 2010 at 8:52 am

      Glad to hear the information on MakeUseOf Answers helped you. :)

  209. Jnj7654
    August 29, 2010 at 9:25 pm

    Thanks for the solution for my .lnk problem. I'm a novice and was going crazy because I couldn't open anything. Is there any explanation for why all extensions would be changed - I don't recall doing anything!

  210. Vishu Revuri
    August 21, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    It worked
    tnx aibek

    • Aibek
      August 22, 2010 at 7:04 am


  211. version 3.4
    August 13, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    thank you so much :)
    was worried a lot abt my pc, it was brand new..! it's fixed now, thanks to u!!
    :) thanks a lot again!

  212. Severance45
    August 4, 2010 at 9:40 am

    hey dude had a prob with my files all in lnk.files i tried the first option 1 could,nt get to work but hey presto tried the 2 option worked like a dream all sorted now and thanx to you chears m8 any more prob,s ill be back thanx again aibek

    • Aibek
      August 4, 2010 at 9:51 am

      I am glad it worked for you as well.

  213. sourav
    July 26, 2010 at 7:56 pm

    thanks aibek, i am a new member,your fix .ink file related s/w really works, thanks a lot.

    • Aibek
      July 27, 2010 at 4:58 am

      you're welcome

  214. Dr Sid
    July 24, 2010 at 9:59 am

    Actuall this is hardly your falt. It's design flaw. In XP and older system it is not possible to chnge this association (other way then editing registry).

  215. Edf3
    July 20, 2010 at 2:31 pm

    This is really worked! Thx man!

  216. Carol
    June 16, 2010 at 1:55 am

    have the same issue running Windows XP - do you have a link for Windows vs. Vista? thank you!

  217. Tomtomchunchun
    June 11, 2010 at 6:30 pm

    thx, really worked .....fixed everythings ....genius

  218. Madhavnallapaneni
    June 11, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    aibek same prblm and it worked ,thank u very much,bcoz i completely wasted a day to fix this problem.....................gr8

    • Aibek
      June 12, 2010 at 7:10 am

      glad it helped!

  219. Ron
    May 26, 2010 at 4:50 am

    All my files changed to .Ink and could not be open. I was able to get yahoo and outlook to work but all the other applications will not open correctly. What might be causing this?

    • Aibek
      May 26, 2010 at 5:06 am

      Hey Ron

      Can you please ask this as anew question. The question will get more
      exposure this way and you're likely to receive the solution faster.

      Just go to

      and click on 'Ask a question' button on the right .



  220. xgerstandtx
    April 26, 2010 at 5:04 am

    Thanks for the help. Very easy to understand and execute. I need to pay more attention to what I'm check/unchecking. Thanks again.

  221. Dale Coates
    March 19, 2010 at 6:52 pm

    I have got windows xp, all my files on the pc seem to be lost :s if i click on anything on the desktop and try to open it, the 'open with' box pops up, this happens with all things aswel as on control pannel i.e 'add or remove programmes, on windows start ect... how do i come about this?

    • Tina
      March 20, 2010 at 10:15 am


      please post this as a new question.

  222. tammy
    March 12, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    I need help to fix the INK files on my deswktop. So far Tried a couple things but no lick can someone please help me with this/

    • Tina
      March 13, 2010 at 12:01 am


      please post a new question.

      Don't forget to share all essential information regarding your issue, e.g. what is wrong with the INK files on your desktop, what may have caused the issue, what exactly did you try already, what is your operating system etc.

  223. Anonymous
    March 4, 2010 at 9:38 am

    Many thanks, Aibek! I had the same problem and microsoft was useless. Your registry program fixed it immediately. You're a genius!

    • Aibek
      March 9, 2010 at 6:21 am

      Glad it worked!

  224. Aibek
    February 19, 2010 at 10:29 am

    No worries, that's not a biggie and can be easily fixed in a couple of minutes. There are a couple of ways to do it, read both:

    Option 1:

    - Go to Start -> "Control Panel" -> Click on Porgrams
    - Click on "Default Programs"
    - Click on "Associate a file type or protocol with a program." to open the "Set Associations" menu.
    - Scroll through the list of extensions to locate the .lnk file extension. The listing will show the description and the current default program associated with it.
    - Click on the extension (to select it) and then click on "Change Program."
    - Select the program you would like to open *.lnk file types.
    - Click on OK.

    Option 2 (If Option1 fails):

    Simply download following file, unzip it, and run it. It will make necessary changes to the registry. Restart the computer and it should be fine.

    • Fredrik
      June 9, 2010 at 12:10 pm

      Thank you very much! Fixed everything :)

      • josh
        November 19, 2011 at 8:30 pm

        Please help! can you tell me which program you clicked on after you clicked change program?

        • Tina
          November 21, 2011 at 8:29 pm


          try the second solution. The registry fix will correct the issue automatically. LNK files are not opened by any program, so you can't really solve it using the first solution.

        • Varun
          November 28, 2011 at 11:54 am

          Thnx A lot tina.........................

        • August
          December 30, 2011 at 8:29 pm

          Thank you so much. I managed to mess up really badly and what could've taken me hours and hours of work to fix it you helped me fix in a few seconds. I cannot express how glad I am.

        • Bob
          January 26, 2012 at 7:07 am

          Thanks Tina - you saved me a lot of time & anxiety!

          Bob Emery

          What makes the .LNK file extensions appear?  Is it a virus or a fault in Windows 7?  How do I avoid it in the future?

        • P.PouYa
          February 12, 2012 at 12:58 am

          Dear Bob, i know this should be related to Tina, but lnk is not a virus. however, it may annoy you very much, specially when it is applied on many programs suddenly. it is often occurred when you use the "Open With" choice or "Open With + arrow " when choosing default programs to run an application when there are several softwares associated to it, like kinds of PDFs, or MediaPlayers. for one application, it is tolerable but if you remove some kernel files of windows in its roaming &/ recent folders (Kbytes in size, like some fundamental shortcuts), it shows its ugly face. ..

        • Towas
          February 11, 2012 at 12:24 pm


          my all programs cant run
          like this google chrome.lnk
          mozilla.lnk and other programs

        • julia
          March 28, 2012 at 10:45 am

          i had the same prob
          try the second option by aibek

        • P.PouYa
          February 12, 2012 at 12:45 am

          ThanX, A LOT.  TanX ALL for the 2nd Solution. 

        • vijay
          March 20, 2012 at 10:31 am

          very very thanks 

        • Rajvir rana
          April 7, 2012 at 2:16 pm

          i have used the link but the download is not opening.... what should i do??? plz tell me..

        • Peterliabc
          April 9, 2012 at 6:47 pm

          Hi Tina,
          I just have the same problem yestereday. Since all my files became the same single one, and can not get on internet, so I can not have the second option, please help, thank you.

        • Tina
          April 9, 2012 at 10:35 pm

          Well, use the computer you used to write this message to download the file to a USB thumb drive and hopefully you will be able to access that on your other computer. Good luck!

        • nephew_10
          April 13, 2012 at 9:40 pm

           thank you very much! after solution number 2 everything looks much better - although we got the message the fixing file could not be imported, some of the keys are used by the system or other processes ... do we have to worry??

    • Kiran Bhatt66
      June 23, 2010 at 5:18 pm

      thanks ................ it realy works...

      • Texasbreeeze
        December 4, 2011 at 4:37 am

        Thanks, this did work and I have been to many sites even ms site and no help, but this did it thanks a bunch!

    • Tony Mielec
      July 30, 2010 at 9:41 pm

      Just had a similar problem. All my .ink turned into an .Lnk . . . turned them into an adobe program executable. .ink was not under the Cntl pnl portion, did your suggested download . . . voila . . . everything back to normal.... Thank you so much.

      • Aibek
        July 31, 2010 at 6:15 am

        you're welcome!

        • Bassemsoussia
          September 9, 2011 at 9:09 pm

          merci pour le l'information ça marcher 

        • Vasanth
          January 30, 2012 at 5:45 am

          hi where r u from dude.

        • I was going nuts
          February 17, 2012 at 3:54 pm

          Your a true hero Aibek...... Why does windows or Microsoft have this info on there home page.... would have saved me 4 days of B.S

        • Aibek
          February 18, 2012 at 11:03 am

          glad to hear it worked for you)

        • zara
          March 28, 2012 at 10:46 am

          thanks a ton    
          you are awesome
          best of luck for the life ahead

        • nitin
          April 4, 2012 at 12:55 am

          thank you very very very .....
          much Aibek...God Bless You and your family...

        • Girish
          April 7, 2012 at 1:03 pm

           I tried  the solution given by you but i s not working

      • Jacob
        February 11, 2012 at 12:25 pm

        help me what the procedures

        • Poojapatil
          March 28, 2012 at 10:46 am

          am having the same problem... i tried working with the registry but not working...please help me am not able to open any file neither run them

    • Mauricio
      August 12, 2010 at 8:56 pm

      Great, this worked for me aswell
      Thanks a lot

      The Netherlands

    • Khor758
      September 20, 2010 at 10:24 am

      how about window 7? can i use the same steps as described above (include the link given) ?

      • Tina
        September 20, 2010 at 5:27 pm

        The question is about Windows 7. But it should work almost the same in Windows Vista, in case that's what you meant. Let us know whether it worked for you. Thank you!

        • vdot
          April 13, 2011 at 1:41 pm

          ive tried it bt still no luck

        • Jinxy33
          May 9, 2011 at 1:20 pm

          THANKYOU! Worked perfectly with win7 but the link does say

          : so I can't see why it wouldn't work with vista? Again, thankyou so much? JINXY

        • EPals
          October 8, 2011 at 11:58 am

          try fixing reg using Ccleaner

        • Missi
          November 16, 2011 at 11:51 pm

          OMG you saved me! I tried the one fro the beginning and it didn't work and then I saw your's. Thank you SOOOOOO much!

        • Levi Reed
          December 6, 2011 at 8:43 pm

          i have a simular problem but i was trying to change the application on a game because it wasnt doing anything and then every appliction on my computer changed to windows media player. nothing on the computer works now apart from firefox and programs that dont run off a aplication.
          please help everything is on this computer and ive tried the second solution once

        • DJ Evans
          January 3, 2012 at 8:29 am

          Where you able to fix this? i have this problem with a freind but it opne IE downlaod section instead 

        • Deb
          January 11, 2012 at 8:55 pm

          You just saved my ass! Tina, you're the greatest! Thank you, thank you!
          Debi Davis
          Mind Your Own Business Radio

        • Proto06
          February 10, 2012 at 4:06 am

          I've just used it for 7 but the icons don't change back. any solutions?

        • I was going nuts
          February 17, 2012 at 3:59 pm

          Yes the link works with windows 7..... It mentions something about vista when you down load it... I think that is what scares window 7 user from going foreword..... But thanks for addressing the question...... This was very helpful It works people!!!!

      • Vicklalove
        November 29, 2010 at 6:03 pm

        yes u can

      • Eeeeenoch
        May 22, 2011 at 3:50 am


    • Shadit
      September 21, 2010 at 7:27 am

      thanks a lot

    • Jaydeep Virani
      September 26, 2010 at 8:43 am

      It helped me a lot.....

    • Prem Mannu
      October 11, 2010 at 2:34 pm

      thankx man it works

    • Paul
      November 7, 2010 at 1:12 pm

      Thank you very much ! It fixed everything on Windows 7 - x64

    • Zakipervez
      November 11, 2010 at 9:15 am

      i want to delete *.lnk File how can i delete? can you help me

      • Tina
        November 11, 2010 at 4:27 pm


        are you sure you don't want to fix the file association?

        Anyways, you are not likely to receive an answer to your question within this thread. If the answers given in this thread are not helpful, I recommend you to submit a new question. Please try to explain why you want to delete your *.Ink files or why you were not able to delete them like any other file.

    • Venutr
      November 12, 2010 at 5:33 pm

      Execellent! thanks for your great work.

    • Stephanie
      November 14, 2010 at 3:02 am

      I have heard file associations are located in the registry so doing regedit can actually fix them.. Is it really an alternative? cause you know doing something in the registry might make or break it, and microsoft doesn't recommend such. Certain free programs like says they can automatically fix the associations in the registry, so you don't have to worry about doing something that may cause permanent damage to your system. If they can, wouldn't that be more convenient than going through all those ssteps?

      • Aibek
        January 27, 2011 at 8:52 am

        I haven't tried the program you linked above so can't give you any
        feedback on it. In regards to editing the registr manually I wouldn't
        worry to much about it because in most cases the steps are pretty
        straightforward. You basically, navigate to specific node in the
        registry tree and change the default value. Plus it's very easy to
        backup/restore the registry using File-> Import/Export options.

    • Allan_allan
      November 27, 2010 at 2:44 pm

      thanks dude :DDDDDDDDD

    • Cassion
      December 5, 2010 at 7:46 am

      Wow, Thanks man! i was so shocked when i saw every shortcut turning into an adobe reader icon T_T

    • nidge
      December 20, 2010 at 6:38 am

      absolute genius
      after 7 hrs of frustration trying to sort out my dad's laptop option 2 sorted the problem with one click. GENIUS
      thanks so so much

    • Ravellino080
      December 29, 2010 at 11:54 am

      Hey, the same thing happened to me. All files are converted to .lnk and the program that is running all my files is adobe. I have tried both options, but none of them worked. Got stuck and dont know what to do

      Can you please help me, if possible?

    • Bama Boy_43
      January 5, 2011 at 7:28 am

      Used the download link for Windows 7 and it worked just like you said. Thank you so much. I really didn't want to have to explain to my wife how I screwed up every program on our desktop.

      • Tina
        January 6, 2011 at 1:05 am

        Glad to hear it worked for you!

    • nike
      January 18, 2011 at 6:45 am

      amazing.. thanks for the info. it works

      • Aibek
        January 18, 2011 at 7:04 am

        you're welcome

    • Steph
      January 19, 2011 at 1:55 am

      windows xp doesnt have the "default programs" option .... HELP! Plus i managed to change everything to open in Win32 and dont know how to change it back!

      • Aibek
        January 19, 2011 at 7:07 am

        I don't have access to Windows XP anymore so not really able to look
        into it for you. I suggest posting this as a new question on MakeUseOf
        Answers. I am sure someone will give you a fix for Windows XP.

    • johnboss
      January 20, 2011 at 2:49 pm

      thank you very much.....

    • Burgundymorgan
      January 28, 2011 at 12:43 am

      I just had the same problem with "everything Lnk" and I downloaded your file and it fixed it. You are my absolute HERO! Thank you sooooooo much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Aibek
        January 28, 2011 at 5:12 am

        glad to hear it helped, you're welcome.

    • Rick R.
      February 4, 2011 at 2:59 pm

      did option 1 above, and now every program shortcut on my screen (ie: internet explorer, open office etc. etc.) wants to open with microsoft office word. how can I change this back. to their original icons and have the programs open has they normally were?

      • Aibek
        February 6, 2011 at 5:54 am

        did you try option 2?

    • Abir 18
      February 11, 2011 at 9:44 am

      Hey Aibek,

      I followed your instructions but my folders still won't open. When I click on the shortcut it opens a firefox window and does not work. Please help, I'm freaking out.

      • Aibek
        February 12, 2011 at 6:21 am

        Hey Abir,

        As far as I understood, your folder shortcuts are now being opened by

        If that's the case please ask this as a new question on MakeUseOf

        I am out of ideas at the moment but I am pretty sure someone will
        provide you with a working fix to this.


    • Diwaker260679
      March 5, 2011 at 8:31 am

      thanks a lot .. it maintained everything....

      hope to have a more solutions in future aso!

      Good Work..

    • Dwarakanath
      March 10, 2011 at 4:36 am

      thanks a lot..........

    • Dennis
      March 15, 2011 at 4:01 pm

      used that download link and now everything is back to normal,,thanks a lot for that,even tech guys cudnt help me with this one,,thanks again

      • Aibek
        March 15, 2011 at 5:21 pm

        you're welcome, glad it worked for you

    • Anne Dimla
      April 14, 2011 at 9:02 am

      wow option2 really works.. i almost cry here thinking and searching for the solution. thank you very much!

    • Uttamslg24
      May 3, 2011 at 11:25 am

      thnx dear...

    • King
      May 4, 2011 at 5:07 pm

      Execellent! Thanks a lot!:)

    • Guy
      May 6, 2011 at 2:35 am

      Great. I had to go to the option 2 but it worked perfectly.

    • John
      May 17, 2011 at 9:47 am

      Thanks a butch...


    • nena
      May 27, 2011 at 4:01 am

       Genius!! Thank you so much!! have a pleasant day! =D

    • youngmoney
      May 27, 2011 at 8:23 am

      Thank you so much, this really works. i am so happy, thanks again. it made my day

    • Michael_currie40
      June 8, 2011 at 6:41 am

      Brilliant!  Personal Computers would be worthless without guys like yourself who take the time to help others.  Thanks man I've spent the last three hours trying to fix this and was about to throw my laptop across my living room.

    • Pmhough
      June 16, 2011 at 7:54 am

      I followed your directions for option 1 but the problem is I don't know what program to use to open .lnk's.  The recommended programs list includes adobe acrobat, windows media center, itunes, bittorrent, and quicktime.  However, anyone of these choices and the problem remains just with a different program opening off all my shortcuts.  Please help, this is maddening!

      • Aibek
        June 16, 2011 at 7:56 am

        Try option 2!

      • Tina
        June 16, 2011 at 7:19 pm

        As Aibek says, try option 2. The registry fix is safe to use and works for most people, check all the comments here!!!

        • Pmhough
          June 17, 2011 at 6:23 am

          Aibek, Tina, you two seriously are saints.  Thank you very much, my computer is once again working properly.   Should I ever have trouble again, I will seek you out

        • Aibek
          June 17, 2011 at 6:39 am

          you're welcome

        • Tina
          June 17, 2011 at 6:00 pm

          Feel free to submit your tech question anytime, we'll be here to help! :)

    • Goofy0
      June 17, 2011 at 6:22 pm

      you'r the best made the kids very happy
      every thing does work again

      • Aibek
        June 18, 2011 at 7:17 am

        :) glad to hear that

    • Deborah
      June 18, 2011 at 12:39 am

      Thank You... Thank you... Thank you.  I have been working on this all day.  I can't tell you how happy I was when my computer restarted and the icons were correct.  I can't wait to tall my husband that you were able to fix it. 

    • kimmy...
      June 25, 2011 at 6:24 pm

      your option 2 works thank u so much!hugs and kisses..mwuah

    • Charudutt
      June 27, 2011 at 10:43 am

       Thanx a ton Aibek :)  I owe you one !!

      • Aibek
        June 28, 2011 at 8:55 am

        you're welcome :)

    • ally
      June 27, 2011 at 6:04 pm

      Genius spent hours looking for fix now working again..Thankyou  

    • Boom25
      June 29, 2011 at 6:39 am

      Hey aibek,
      I can't find the .zip file, and I dont get option two
      May you please help?

      • Tina
        June 30, 2011 at 12:27 am

        Downloading the .zip file works fine for me. And it definitely works. You should try again and apply the registry fix inside the .zip archive.

      • Aibek
        June 30, 2011 at 8:54 am

        here is the link to the option 2 file,

    • silentsnake
      July 3, 2011 at 2:37 pm

      Wow, thx so much man, ive been havin that problem for days now., and i couldn't find a proper solution... i suspect mine happened when ive installed that imgburn software under my windows 7 OS. even if its not vista, that regfile solved the probleme...youuupiiiiiiiie!

      • Aibek
        July 4, 2011 at 4:32 am

        glad it helped :)

    • Jaynelyn Mangila
      July 6, 2011 at 7:30 am

      Hello. I encountered the same situation. I used window7. On the last part, when I click the change program button, there's a pop-up window appear stating choose the program you want to open the file. There are recommended programs below and other programs available. I'm confused what to choose for every time I select Internet explorer, all my desktop icons change their pictures to internet explorer. There is also a browse button on the pop up window. So just wanted to know how will I fixed this one and what would be the last step to complete the process and fixed my computer.

      Thank you and I'll be waiting for your immediate response..


      • Tina
        July 6, 2011 at 2:05 pm


        actually the first solution doesn't work because there is no program that opens lnk files. You have to use the second option, i.e. the registry fix. Just download, unpack and run it. It will automatically fix the registry key that is broken on your computer. It's safe, promised!

    • Rajupasa
      July 16, 2011 at 9:50 am

      Hi, i dunno why it didn't help me... Is there any other way out? Don't wanna format my laptop... Thanks in advance...

      • Tina
        July 16, 2011 at 1:34 pm


        did you try the second solution? It's a registry fix and it works. It's safe to use!

    • Mariakos1999
      July 19, 2011 at 12:34 pm

      yes but what program to open lnk files...firefox.lnk is for firefox.exe   safari.lnk is for safari.exe understand?

      • Aibek
        July 19, 2011 at 1:07 pm

        The *.lnk files are shortcuts and should be handled by Windows explorer
        regardless of what program the shortcut points to. That registry fix I
        referred to makes sure that *.lnk files are handled properly.


    • Ajay Daniel
      July 20, 2011 at 2:04 pm

      thanx .... 2 option is worked.

    • Ajay Daniel
      July 20, 2011 at 2:04 pm

      thanx .... 2 option is worked.

    • maharshi
      July 21, 2011 at 4:27 am

      great...!! works totally does....Thnx a lot....i appreciate your help....thnx..

    • Nhekairo Washington
      July 23, 2011 at 1:00 pm

      Option 2 worked for me like I NEVER EXPECTED.... my friend was already ruling my machine off and was opting for system restore... I thought my machine had been grilled by a virus ....but ...alas YOU DID ME A BIG FAVOUR!!!!!! Thanks Thanks and Tnaks!!!

    • kmigellano
      July 26, 2011 at 9:33 am
      • Aibek
        July 26, 2011 at 9:47 am

        thanks for the link

    • Yna
      July 26, 2011 at 2:01 pm

      thank you amazing! big thanks!

    • Srirams
      July 26, 2011 at 10:32 pm

      simply superb frnd... 

    • Sanjay Ralhan
      July 28, 2011 at 1:24 pm

      Thanks a lot. The desktop files are opening now after running the file

    • Jebaily
      August 2, 2011 at 4:46 pm

      HOLY SNAP AIBEK!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! :D:D:D this was my dads NEW laptop and if he found out about what happened I'd be DEAD right now!!! You sure saved my bacon!! Wait who says that anymore???? Hmm... Bacon...

      • Aibek
        August 3, 2011 at 7:24 am


        • Tina
          August 3, 2011 at 1:27 pm

          Time for an award! :)

    • Ian Stafford
      August 3, 2011 at 5:56 am

      Can you help I have a program called winrar and it automatically opens the zip file and has no option to run it.

      • Tina
        August 3, 2011 at 1:29 pm


        this sounds like a completely different question. WinRAR is actually supposed to open ZIP files. What do you think it should run? You might want to ask a new question via the respectiev button on MakeUseOf Answers.

    • Petina 2005
      August 3, 2011 at 1:48 pm

      I tried option1 and couldn't do it. All desktop icons changed to  whatever program I pressed. My problem is I have done something that has changed all desktop icons to windows symbol and i can't open my files/folders as they seem to be DOS mode.

      • Tina
        August 3, 2011 at 2:52 pm


        just try option 2. The registry fix has worked for dozens of people, as you can see in this thread!

      • Aibek
        August 4, 2011 at 8:04 am

        what about option 2, did you try it?

    • Rakesh 1si08ee042
      August 5, 2011 at 7:21 am

      Cool bro, good suggestion

    • Sachinsagar 1994
      August 8, 2011 at 12:36 pm

      Dude, if i found u now, i would really kiss u.. :-P.

      I ws joking, dnt take it seriously... bt seriously, thaks a lot.. Ur help was much appreciated... :-)

    • Heinrich_diez
      August 16, 2011 at 12:29 pm

      WOW you are sooo great... i thought my laptop has a virus but thank god i found the solution.. thank you soooo much!!!

      • Aibek
        August 17, 2011 at 8:45 am

        you're welcome

    • Abhayommandhana
      August 21, 2011 at 11:02 am

      thanks a lot for ur assistance looking forward for the same cooperation abhay mandhana abhayommandhana@gmail:disqus .com

    • Deepak
      August 23, 2011 at 6:59 pm

      Hi Aibek,

      The second option works for me i am facing the similar problem in my window 7 .I will be thankful to you if you pls suggest me a gud spyware antivirus so that i can scan my full pc & kill the remaining virus. I am saying this bcoz i am analyzing that  my system is working slow than earlier.Waiting for ur reply

       Thanks a lot genuis. U r g8t

    • Jack morse
      August 24, 2011 at 11:20 pm

      I am confused  about option 2 I went to the link helponline when it opened I did'nt what to do.our help would be greatly appreciated I've been going nuts for the last 2 days .  Thanks so much

    • Rajeshrj01
      August 28, 2011 at 7:50 pm

      but dude i have another problem ,my all files have .ink extension so if i select adobe reader as viewer than all files open in adobe even my IE ,plz suggest me ans. my mail id is, plz ,i am waiting sir

      • Tina
        August 28, 2011 at 9:04 pm


        try option two, the registry fix! Download it directly clicking this link.

    • henry8899
      September 15, 2011 at 5:39 pm

      Aibek is great, the option2 worked incredibly!
      Henry Schneider

    • Kabir
      September 28, 2011 at 5:16 am

      that was a life saver. have managed to restore the file associations using option 2.

      jut discovered this site and looks like i'll be coming here more often.

      • Aibek
        September 28, 2011 at 6:33 am

        looking forward to see you here in the future

    • Rahula
      October 7, 2011 at 2:27 pm

      Thanks Works  like a magical

    • Adrian
      October 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm

      thanks.............fixed everything.

    • Sdwahus
      October 11, 2011 at 1:33 am

      Thanks, the download worked great but my shortcuts still have the word symbol on all the programs. Can you tell me how to change the shortcut pics?

    • Saikrishnafmab
      October 12, 2011 at 2:51 pm

      I did the same mistake but all thanks to you my pc is normal again:)))))))))))

    • Promita
      October 13, 2011 at 7:55 pm

      OH MY GOD!!! thank you so much for this.... saved my life... you did...  this friend of mine made the same mistake while trying to delete something... thank you... thank you so so so so much!!!

      • Aibek
        October 14, 2011 at 5:54 am

        you're welcome

    • vangie
      October 21, 2011 at 5:39 am

      you're the best ,thank you,
      Question: how can i install microsoft office on my pc online,because i dont have an installer.?is there a specific link you can give me.

      • Aibek
        October 21, 2011 at 1:11 pm

        Hey there,

        Glad the fix worked for you. In regards to your toher questions, please ask this as anew question on MakeUseOf Answers, I don't know the answers myself.


    • Jamilichakradhari
      October 23, 2011 at 3:02 am

      Same thing happened in my mobile,i thought it is a virus and i scanned.finally virus was there and removed.When i finally opened my mobile all the files were changed to .lnk files

    • Knoxzie
      October 27, 2011 at 7:27 pm

      Thank you so much

    • Kjanderton
      November 1, 2011 at 1:42 pm

      You have saved my day! - will be wary of ticked boxes again.  Phew!!

      Ken Anderton

    • Kid A
      November 8, 2011 at 8:03 pm

      OK, I assume everyone that says this works is referring to option 2, because option 1 is so much nonsense that it was hard for me to take you seriously. Select the program I would like to open *.lnk file types? As a way to fix a problem?? There is no possible selection you could reach through that method that solve anything. Did you even test the solution you offered yourself?

      • Tina
        November 9, 2011 at 8:03 pm


        you are right that option 1 doesn't work for LNK files.

        It does, however, work if the file association of something other than a LNK file was changed to the wrong program, for example EXE pointing to PPT. Since the keywords may also direct people with other file association mishaps to this question, the answer is still relevant.

    • Night_d3ath
      November 12, 2011 at 1:02 am

       thank you very much , option 2 works perfect , i tried so many things to repair the problem , i tough my girlfriend is going to kill me if she that .lnk everywhere, but now is fix it thanks to your advise. thanks a lot.

    • Ratsoauer
      November 15, 2011 at 8:15 am

      I am a German. Used the file on 15th of Nov. 2011. Well done, i am happy

    • Daklu
      November 15, 2011 at 11:04 am

      One of those ur really smart..last time ..i reformat the whole this virus or what?

      • Tina
        November 15, 2011 at 6:27 pm


        I don't think it's a virus, it's probably more like a user miss-clicking something.

      • Aibek
        November 16, 2011 at 8:27 am

        Sorry, I don't understand your question. Could you explain your question in detail.

    • Mikejnlv
      November 17, 2011 at 10:52 pm

      I lost all my shortcut icons over a month ago and had forgotten all about them, just browsing the net and came upon this page and ("Henry") asking the same question i had for weeks. Tried option (1) must have been a dozen or so times-it;s not much use if i have no idea what program to pick. Then i hesitated and finally decided to download  option (2) and WA,, LA,,, it worked. Thanks MakeUseOf i can now finally live again,,,I GOT MY ICONS BACK.    (MikeJnlv)

    • james
      November 22, 2011 at 3:32 pm

      a MILLION THANKS, option 2 was perfect. 


    • Baluga
      November 23, 2011 at 9:56 am

      thanks man cool it works ;)

    • Lrandall6260
      November 24, 2011 at 11:36 am

      Hi Aibek,

      Many thanks mate. The ZIP file worked a treat.


      • Aibek
        November 25, 2011 at 5:19 am

        glad to hear that)

    • Varun
      November 28, 2011 at 11:50 am

      Awesome man it worked the 2nd opt was much simpler 

      Can u suggest me which anti virus is best if i want a free one...........

    • Shahge1
      November 29, 2011 at 2:22 am

      Thanks big problem sloved

    • Cmanfx
      December 3, 2011 at 1:20 am


    • Imsamurai
      December 8, 2011 at 9:08 am

      Click Start Menu, and then type regedit in the Start Search and press ENTER.Navigate to the following registry branch:
      Click on the arrow to expand it and delete the sub-key named UserChoice.Exit from Registry Editor.

    • Ahnaf Adil
      December 20, 2011 at 10:29 am

      damn you are good!!! i was really frustrated about this. Thankx man 

      • Aibek
        December 20, 2011 at 3:55 pm

        glad to hear it worked)

    • Anil Dhurwe00
      December 20, 2011 at 11:42 am

      hey!It really worked

    • Joeri
      December 29, 2011 at 7:50 pm

      Hi all,

      I have a same problem....i need to remove unwanted program for .Dll

      I've successfully followed these steps: HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerFileExts[file

      Then I checked the
      Recommended Program List for .Dll file. But unwanted program was still
      there in list. So i thought changes might be reflected after reboot.
      But even after reboot it was showing the program in list.

      I've again confirmed that key is deleted or not...key was removed we need to follow some other steps in addition to
      aforementioned steps???

      I also tried Ccleaner but it doesnt help also.

      Any help in this regard will be greatly appreciated.

    • Marianneabreu
      December 30, 2011 at 10:06 pm

      Just like magic... I have been trying to change the icons for hours, until I decided to google the problem... and I found your comment/solution.

      You are a genius! good luck to you!


      Marianne Abreu
      Dec 30, 2011

      • Aibek
        December 31, 2011 at 8:52 am

        you're welcome Marianne )

    • Efowler87
      December 31, 2011 at 4:41 am

      thank you so much, I so how messed up my .lnk files. I was so worried but thanks to your link everything is back to normal :) Thank YOU!

    • Denise
      January 2, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      Oh my gosh! my computer had been messed for 5 months and I couldn't access any of my files or basically anything. Try option 2, worked perfectly. I cannot thank you enough! :D

      • Aibek
        January 3, 2012 at 4:48 am

        glad to hear it worked)

    • zithendra
      January 4, 2012 at 10:45 am

      Thank you the zip file is working :)

    • Chouhan21
      January 6, 2012 at 2:59 am

      It's really works..Thank you buddy.

      • Aibek
        January 7, 2012 at 9:24 am

        you're welcome)

    • Padmani2008
      January 7, 2012 at 2:09 am

      thank you sooooo much.....

    • Blaze
      January 12, 2012 at 12:05 am

      Yeh i tryed both steps it didnt work plz help !

      • Aibek
        January 12, 2012 at 7:39 am

        hmmm, did you try Windows' system restore option?

    • combatbarbie
      January 23, 2012 at 8:18 am

      Thank you SOOOOO much. That saved me the biggest waste of time trip to Best Buy.

    • Alchemist669
      January 26, 2012 at 11:13 am

      thanks to you sir, I had the same problem and it got solved

    • Crazy_buggs45
      January 29, 2012 at 3:05 pm

      thanx dude.. yae just saved me.. lol..

    • Jacob
      February 11, 2012 at 12:29 pm

      ma'am could you help me..
      desame problem to me
      my all icon change into logo of adobe then the name was change also chrome.lnk,mozilla.lnk, and my other file cant run..because this problem

      • Jacob
        February 11, 2012 at 12:33 pm

        on my loptop window 7

      • Tina
        February 11, 2012 at 7:40 pm


        did you try the registry fix:

    • mohamad
      February 12, 2012 at 11:12 am

       Thanks, It works fine. But In fact we have not option 1 as solution I think the only option is option 2.

    • AliDee
      February 19, 2012 at 6:09 pm

      THANK YOU! Option 1 didn't work and I could not access the web on the affected computer so I opened that link on another computer and copied the file to a thumb drive.  I saved it to the desktop of the affected computer and fixed it from there.  Thank you!

      • Aibek
        February 20, 2012 at 4:27 pm

        glad to hear it worked.

    • Catherinez
      February 20, 2012 at 11:45 pm

      i love you, you saved my computer

    • Dismember13
      February 21, 2012 at 7:28 pm

      thanks a lot aibek.
      u saved my pc!

    • princess
      February 25, 2012 at 9:50 am

      thaaaaaaaaaaaaanks really, fixed it in a minute. U r awsome:)

    • Imtiyaz
      March 4, 2012 at 1:54 pm

      Thanks for the brilliant suggestion, Aibek :)  Everything have been fixed :D Now, no LNK file!

    • Apurva1acharya
      March 13, 2012 at 4:30 am

       Thank you...

    • rahman
      March 16, 2012 at 10:28 am

       thank you.....

    • Munna Friend
      March 18, 2012 at 7:31 pm

      thanx worked...
      once very thankful

    • Snaolekar
      March 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm

      it works fine ..!
      thank you

    • Swetas037
      March 23, 2012 at 8:49 am

      thank u so much sir .......i cant tell u that nw how much happy i m..........................thanku thanku thanku so much

    • sank
      March 23, 2012 at 6:40 pm

      hey thank you aibek !!

    • junphoenix
      March 26, 2012 at 12:12 pm

      hi.... thanks a lot ... very2x much... wew ... i really thought that i will not be able to fix my problem about this lnk.,... thnx aibek...

    • shivarul
      April 1, 2012 at 4:07 am

      my system desktop files will be created .ink ad .exe files so wht can i do pls tel me friend

    • Ally
      April 2, 2012 at 5:48 am

      i luv u O.O THANK YOU SO FKINGH MUCH every fourm i wnt to had some windows tech and they were all 'well heres 5000 steps, step one *some rly complicated stuff*' this was simple and easy option 2 works like a charm!

    • Coolklokan
      April 8, 2012 at 3:22 pm

      I LOVE YOU!!!!!

    • kajal
      April 16, 2012 at 2:35 pm

      but when i open this file it shows like "application not found"
      dan wat to do????

      • Tina
        April 16, 2012 at 4:31 pm


        Did you try option 2, the registry fix?

        • harry singh
          April 24, 2012 at 3:35 pm

          what is option2, the registry fix? from where have to download it

    • Bernius10
      April 18, 2012 at 2:20 pm

       Thank you very much this help me a lot, fixed everything, you are a god send

    • Babyqualitystuff
      April 19, 2012 at 9:37 am

      The second option works great.
      Thanks a lot !

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