Windows 10: Lost file associations, esp RTF Solved

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  1.    2 Weeks Ago #1

    Lost file associations, esp RTF


    (I have found threads on this topic here, but nothing that fits the bill.)

    All of a sudden
    I can't open docs saved in WordPad because:

    This file does not have an app associated with it for performing this action. Please install an app or, if one is already installed, create an association in the Default Apps Settings page.

    I then had multi-pop-ups in the bottom right of screen saying that an app had changed a file association so associations had been reset to defaults - eg, .rwl to Photos. (Whatever rwl may be - I didn't recognise most of the ones I caught sight of.)

    I cannot change file associations in Settings because WordPad isn't there, for .rtf it offers me Word (which I neither have nor want) or to find an app in the Store, which won't populate.

    It will open docs if I do so via AllPrograms>WindowsAccessories>WordPad>Open...

    I can't simply reinstall WordPad so it will claim the file association, can I? I do like to use it for simple docs, like those containing the copyright and other info I put in YouTube Description on my videos, and other things.

    Did a System Restore to a couple of days ago but it failed. The only other one I've got is for the dreaded 1803 update.

    I've had a number of issues* with the OS lately, so I'm on the verge of reinstalling it, but it will be such a lot of work that I wonder if anyone can give me a quick fix for today's particular problem? Just to tide me over.

    *Hence I'm already frazzled and not thinking clearly.

    Thank you for any input.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    2 Weeks Ago #2

    Hi, sorry to hear of your problems.

    First, what is your current build (Windows key + R, winver)?

    The only other one I've got is for the dreaded 1803 update.
    - I'm not sure what that means- grammatically you're referring to a restore point... or perhaps you mean your other option is to upgrade?? But perhaps you are already using 1803, and you mean a restore point to 1803 base build.

    Second, if you are on 1803, and have another restore point, that would be the obvious thing to try.
    However System Restore doesn't always work when you want it to- which is why we continually and frequently advocate the routine use of disk imaging e.g. using Macrium Reflect (free) + large enough external storage.

    Do you use disk imaging by any chance?

    I've had a number of issues* with the OS lately
    If you have upgraded to 1803, then some people are encountering some difficulties. Perhaps that's what you're referring to.

    I can't simply reinstall WordPad
    Wordpad is included in the OS so can't be reinstalled separately.

    There's no obvious cause, so I suggest a couple of basic steps:
    a. run
    chkdsk c: /scan
    from an admin command prompt and report the result

    b. do an antivirus scan

    Finally see:
    Restore Default File Type Associations in Windows 10 | Windows 10 Tutorials

    - which may help you restore associations- but this depends on the underlying cause.

    The Tutorial section from which that comes is worth being familiar with:
    Windows 10 Tutorials
    searchable list:
    Windows 10 Tutorial Index | Windows 10 Tutorials
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    2 Weeks Ago #3

    Thank you, Dalchina :)

    Sorry! I usually start a post with my hardware and OS version

    Dell XPS 15 9560 ~ Windows10Home 1803 (OS Build 17134.48)

    The most recent restore point prior to the manual one I set a couple of days ago is the one that MS set when it did the 1803 update (since which I seem to have had escalating problems).

    I am suspicious of Dell Support Assist, which ran away with me a few days ago when I was unwell and not concentrating - I had never run it before but it presented itself to me with a BIOS and another update and it ran a lot of scans, taking ages. I didn't set a restore point then

    RESETTING DEFAULT APPS

    Incidentally, if I select "Set defaults by app" (which I know you didn't advise doing but I just had a look out of interest), the settings page behaves as if it's going to populate and then crashes... ... ...

    I have reset apps as advised, but cannot now set them to my preferred apps because Settings keeps crashing. I still cannot open WordPad docs.

    I've always had a block on disk imaging, plus I really do not want to use external media, I will not remember where I've put it - could I do it on D-drive? All my data goes there. However, that will be for when I have a stable system running, which isn't NOW!

    Do you think, in view of the above, it would be best to do a factory reset?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    2 Weeks Ago #4

    Some people have had problems with the updates since 1803... see the relevant threads per update per build in the News section.

    You can see if anything similar to your experience is reported there.

    Given you suggest problems started since the last update, and Settings is crashing, I suggest you try that restore point.

    If that system restore fails - and they can- you do have the option of an in-place upgrade repair install (tutorial) which keeps all programs and data and most settings.

    Also in 1803 I think I read there's a new feature different to refresh or reset which keeps almost everything.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    2 Weeks Ago #5

    Thanks again.

    BTW, I have delved into Tutorials a number of times, but when I want something specific my search terms seem to be way off.

    Off I go on another trawl :)
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    2 Weeks Ago #6

    Have you tried the restore point?

    in-place is easy if that's what you're thinking of- start
    Windows 10 Tutorial Index | Windows 10 Tutorials
    and search the page

    Sometimes it's hard 'cos so many titles include the same thing. But you can do a Google search and specify the site...
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    2 Weeks Ago #7

    dalchina said: View Post
    Have you tried the restore point?

    in-place is easy if that's what you're thinking of- start
    Windows 10 Tutorial Index | Windows 10 Tutorials
    and search the page

    Sometimes it's hard 'cos so many titles include the same thing. But you can do a Google search and specify the site...
    .
    I've done a more-or-less factory reset without formatting C.

    Heart attack when Mozbackup threw a wobbly, but after inventive faffing on my part it worked.

    The rest of the day will be spent reinstalling my must-have "apps".

    Thank you for your input, especially the tip about Google site search :)
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    2 Weeks Ago #8

    Glad it's working, though it's a sledgehammer approach... one thing- if you've used the manufacturer's Recovery partition, I would guess your Windows build will now be earlier than 1803... If you did a Windows reset, then 1803.

    To save yourself this time in the future, now's the time to create your first disk image...
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    2 Weeks Ago #9

    Believe it or not, it still gave me trouble with file associations - when I installed IrfanView - but was able to re-associate correctly.

    dalchina said: View Post
    If you did a Windows reset, then 1803.

    To save yourself this time in the future, now's the time to create your first disk image...
    Yes, I did a Windows reset :)

    Disk Image - what about putting it on D-drive then? So I'll always know where it is
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  •    2 Weeks Ago #10

    Whilst you could, what you need to consider is that the image is your ultimate means of quick recovery - even if your disk fails or is affected by ransomware, say.

    So your images need to be on a disk which you keep under normal backup rules-
    a. disconnected
    b. powered down
    c. in a separate location secure from flood, theft...

    Further, consider if you were imaging a laptop, the images were on another internal disk, and the laptop was stolen. That's everything- gone.

    Whereas if you have the images, you can buy a new laptop and have it up and running as was fairly quickly.

    Your images also act as backups- you can mount the image files and copy off any file you want as normal.

    Note: installing any new program that can handle an extension you have already associated will result in Windows asking you questions about that, unfortunately.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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