Windows 10

If your PC is blocking downloads, how to unlock downloaded files in Windows 10

blocked downloads Windows 10 The default security settings of each Windows 10 PC, in order to prevent the unwanted execution of malware and viruses by less careful or less experienced users, block opening of files downloaded from the internet or received as attachments in emails. Depending on how Windows 10 is configured, it may be that after downloading a file from the internet, only a warning about its possible danger appears, or that the file is completely blocked and that the completion of the download is not possible.
When a file is locked by Windows 10, if we are sure there is no risk, how to unlock and run it is the following: press on it with the right mouse button, go up Property and then, in the card General use the option for cancel the lock.
We learned that this security feature is related in part to the security tool Windows 10 Microsoft Defender Smartscreen, which blocks downloaded files and are not recognized. In the latest version of Windows 10, this download security check also added a new reputation-based check. Going to Windows 10 Settings, on Update and Security> Security on Windows , you can press, on the right side, on App and browser control to find options for reputation-based protection. By pressing the link Reputation protection settings, you can enable or disable various controls on downloads and files downloaded from the internet.
All settings listed here are responsible for blocking downloads, especially the one under the title: block potentially unwanted apps which has appeared in the latest updates and has its own option "Block Downloads". Depending on the type of program you are using to download files from the internet, the type of file downloaded and the security settings, Windows will prevent or warn you when trying to open the file. If Microsoft Smartscreen detects that a file is not secure, it prevents Windows and installed programs from opening it or displays a warning message before opening the file.

Disable download blocking in Windows 10

If you often download files from the internet or receive many files as email attachments, you can disable or prevent Windows 10 from blocking downloads by turning off the Smartscreen, but it is not recommended. Instead, there is a more hidden way that is more effective and that does not disable the security features of Windows 10 even if you have to edit the registry manually with this procedure:

  • Search for Registry or regedit on the Start menu and run it.
  • Using the text box at the top, search for the folder
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER Software Microsoft Windows CurrentVersion Policies
  • Right click on Policies, then go up New> Key.
  • Give the name Attachments to the new key.
  • Click on Attachments and then, in the right side of the window, press the right mouse button to create a new value DWord (32-bit) giving it its name ScanWithAntiVirus and how value 1. The value 0 activates the scanning of the downloaded files, while the value 1 deactivates it. Microsoft recommends giving 3 as a value to the key ScanWithAntiVirus to not disable virus scanning without blocking downloads.
  • Close the registry editor and restart the PC (or log off and try the user again).

You can also make this change from thegroup policy editor (not present in Windows 10 Home Edition).

  • From the Start menu, search Change group policy or gpedit.msc to open the tool.
  • On the right side, open the following path:
    User Configuration> Administrative Templates> Windows Components> Attachment Management
  • By pressing on Attachment management, you can turn off the setting for for display the Unblock button when receiving a file.

Finally, remember that the blocking of downloads may also depend on the browser used and refer to guide on blocking deceptive sites and dangerous Google Chrome downloads for more details.

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