When downloading files using Internet Explorer, you may see the Open/Save confirmation box (as shown below) for certain file types. If you uncheck the Always ask before opening this type of file checkbox, the preference is saved in the user part of the registry. Also, the configuration is stored in a separate registry value for each file type.
Here is how to reset the Open/Save choice for a specific file type or all file types in Internet Explorer in Windows XP/Vista, Outlook Express and Windows Mail.
For example, if you download an Word 2003 file from a Web site and uncheck the above option. the registry is updated with the following registry entry:
Value name: Word.Document.8
Value type: REG_NONE
Where Word.Document.8 is the ProgID for .doc file types. Examples of other ProgIDs are txtfile, WinZip, xmlfile, wmvfile and so forth.
To reset the Always ask before opening this type of file choice in Windows XP, use these steps:
1. Click Start, Run and type CONTROL FOLDERS
2. Select File Types tab
3. Select the file type from the list for which you wish to reset the Open/Save as option
4. Click Advanced
5. Enable the option named Confirm open after download
6. Click OK.
As Windows Vista does not have the File Types tab in the Folder Options applet, you need to edit the registry in order to reset the Open/Save choice made earlier in Internet Explorer.
1. Click Start, type Regedit.exe and press ENTER
2. Navigate to the following branch:
3. In the right-pane, right-click on the appropriate entry and choose Delete
4. Exit the Registry Editor.
OUTLOOK EXPRESS / WINDOWS MAIL
Outlook Express and Windows Mail store the Always ask before opening this type of file choice in a different registry key. It’s here:
RESETTING THE OPTION FOR ALL FILE TYPES
To reset the Always ask before opening this type of file choice for ALL file types, you don’t even have to open Regedit.exe. You can accomplish this using the Reg.exe command-line tool.
For Internet Explorer in Windows XP and Windows Vista
Open a Command Prompt window (CMD.EXE) and type:
For Outlook Express & Windows Mail
Note: To prevent formatting or syntax errors, copy the text from the text box above and paste it exactly in the Command Prompt window.
About the author
Ramesh Srinivasan founded Winhelponline.com back in 2005. He is passionate about Microsoft technologies and has a vast experience in the ITeS industry — delivering support for Microsoft's consumer products. He has been a Microsoft MVP [2003 to 2012] who contributes to various Windows support forums.