When you try to open a particular file, Windows 10 may prevent you from opening it directly. It will show you a security warning that the file originated from an unknown and potentially unsafe source. This happens when a feature of Windows 10 called Attachment Manager blocks files that it considers unsafe and harmful to your PC.
While you can manually unblock every file, this can be a cumbersome process — especially if you have to do it for nearly every file you download. In this article, we will show you how you can prevent Windows 10 from blocking downloaded files.
What is the attachment manager in Windows 10?
In Windows 10, there is a security feature called Attachment Manager It prevents you from opening unsafe files. These can be files you’ve downloaded or files that Windows identifies as unsafe email attachments. If the Attachment Manager feature considers a file to be unsafe, it prevents Windows 10 from opening it and displays a warning message. The Attachment Manager feature categorizes the files you download based on the file type and file name extension.
Windows Attachment Manager uses an application programming interface (API) IAttachmentExecute To find the file type, file association, and to determine the most appropriate action to take. When you download and save files to your disk, Windows adds specific metadata to these files. These metadata are attachments. When Windows adds metadata to download files as an attachment, this is known as zone information.
Now, area information is where the root of the matter lies. When File Explorer opens a file, it reads the attached region information stored in the same place and checks to see if the file came from an unknown source. If Windows finds that the file is not recognized or that it came from unknown sources, it prevents you from opening it.
A Windows SmartScreen warning will appear that states:
The ability “SmartScreen” prevented an unknown application from starting. Running this application may put your computer at risk.
If you want to manually open a blocked file, right-click on the downloaded file and select Properties. in the tab general , Click Cancel ban , and click Application , then tap OK.
But, imagine you have to do this every time you download a file—it can be annoying and time consuming. If you often download files from the Internet or may receive many of them as email attachments, you may want to completely prevent your computer from blocking your files.
To prevent Windows 10 from preventing you from opening your files, you need to prevent it from adding region information to files you download. You can do this by manually configuring the attachment manager using Local Group Policy Editor or Registry Editor.
We will give you the necessary steps on how to do it. You must be logged in as an administrator or you must request administrator privileges to be able to stop downloading files from being blocked.
Configure the Attachment Manager with the Registry Editor
press the . key
Windows + R to open the registry editor. From there, type “Regeditand click Enter. The User Account Control prompt will pop up. When this prompt appears, click on the “Yes” button to continue.
Go to the Attachments key in the registry editor:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Software > Microsoft > Windows > CurrentVersion > Policies > Attachments.
If the Attachments key is not in the Policies key, you will have to create it. To do this, right-click on the Policies key, and click new , then tap Key. This will create a new key, which you should then call it “Attachments”. If you find that the Attachments key already exists, you can skip to the next step.
Right-click the Attachments key, and click new , then select DWORD value (32-bit).
You will be prompted to name the newly created DWORD value. called it “SaveZoneInformationand click Enter.
Finally, to disable Attachment Manager in Windows 10, double click on the newly created SaveZoneInformation value and change its value data to 1. Click OK to finish.
When you complete these steps, close Registry Editor and restart your computer to apply the changes. From now on, no file you download will not attach region information to the file’s surrogate data. This will allow you to open your files without any difficulties.
If you want to go back and enable the attachment manager, you can do so by going to the Attachment key in the registry editor:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Software > Microsoft > Windows > CurrentVersion > Policies > Attachments
From here, on the right side, double click on the SaveZoneInformation value and change its value data to 3.
Configure Attachment Manager using the Local Group Policy Editor
The Local Group Policy Editor is only available in Windows 10 Enterprise, Education, and Pro editions. As a result, this method is not applicable if you own a Windows 10 Home edition. If your computer is running Windows 10 Home edition, you will need to configure Attachment Manager via the registry editor.
If you are using a version of Windows 10 that has the Local Group Policy Editor, you can configure the Attachment Manager using the steps indicated here.
To get started, press the . key
Windows + R , And type “gpedit.msc” , and click Enter to open the Local Group Policy Editor.
Attachment Manager: User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Attachment Manager.
In the left pane of Attachment Manager, double-click Policy Do Not Preserve Zone Information in File Attachments Edits the area information settings.
A window will appear where you can choose whether or not the attachment manager should keep zone information.
Click Enabled to allow the attachment manager not to keep zone information. This will ensure that Windows won’t block your files when you open them. Click the buttonApplicationTo save the changes, then click OK.
When done, close Local Group Policy Editor and restart your computer to save changes.
Windows will no longer block your files
If you have previously had to manually unblock most of the files you downloaded, you will realize how difficult this process can be. Once you apply these tips, you will have the freedom to open all your files easily.
If you download files and somehow doubt their authenticity, you can always open them in safe and isolated environments to ensure the security of your computer and your data. Learn the best ways to safely run suspicious programs and applications in Windows.