Marqueda from Spring, Texas is having trouble with some of her files.  They’re not opening with the right program!  She writes “When I try to open some document files there is a Windows Live Photo Gallery icon on the file and it most of the times will say cannot open because wrong format…will open if Jpeg. The file is setup to open in Adobe Reader X I think. How did this happen. I am not knowledgeable about PCs enough to resolve this. I have learned to right click and get option to open with Internet Explorer and that works most of the time. It appears to be associated with Adobe Reader X setup but I am just guessing. It is a aggravation to fight this all the time…Perhaps I am not patient enough. I am running Windows 7. I would appreciate any suggestion you might offer. I am 82 and my husband is 84 so would appreciate if you suggestion could be very clearly written step by step. I know you always do this. :)”

Thanks for the great question, Marqueda.

It sounds to me like you just have the wrong program associated with these files.  This can happen a couple of ways, and there are a couple of ways to fix it.

One of the more common ways for this error to happen is if you click on a file from a website to open it, choose an incorrect program (or have one incorrectly chosen for you by default) and having the box marked “do this automatically with files like this from now on” box checked.


This will change your default for this file type.

Another way is to right-click on a file on your hard drive, click OPEN WITH, click CHOOSE ANOTHER PROGRAM (or “APP”), select an incorrect program and click the box that says “always use this program (or app) to open (this file type) files”.


(My screenshot says “APP” because I’m using Windows 10.)  I know that this seems like an awful lot of steps to do the wrong thing, but trust me… it happens.

Now, the good news is that the easiest way to fix it is to follow the steps above to change the default program back to the one that you want it to open with.

I hope that this helps!

~ Randal Schaffer