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Solutions: Use 'Open With' dialog window to access e-mails

I received this message on e-mails that I am unable to open: "This file does not have a program associated with it for performing this action. Create an association in the Folder Options control panel." I'm not sure how to do this.

The easiest way: First save the attachment to your desktop. Next, right-click this file and click Open With. This will open the Open With dialog window. Either click the program that you want to use to open this file, or click the browse button and navigate to the executable program that should be used. If you want all files of that type to open in this same program, select the check box for always using the selected program to open that kind of file, then click OK. Otherwise, clear the "always use" check box, then click OK.

If you're not sure which programs open which extensions, you can use the list found at to get some clues. If you're not sure and still curious about the contents of a file, the safest thing to do is to use Windows Notepad (C:\windows\system32\Notepad.exe). Notepad is innocuous, and while it won't make sense of any binary file, it also will not activate any possible malicious/virus content in a file.

I am continually getting an e-mail — some addressed to me, some not — containing a virus. I use Earthlink and they catch them, but I am concerned someone else might see one and open it if I were not here. Earthlink said send them to Spam but that doesn't stop them from coming, and they are almost daily now. How can I stop these?

You didn't specify which e-mail program you're using, so I'll assume that it is Earthlink Web Mail. There should be an 'Edit Filter' link on the Mailbox menu. Here you should be able to set up customized filtering rules such as moving any received e-mail from the offending address or domain (the part after the '@') directly to your Junk or Delete folder. Most e-mail client programs have similar features and when set up properly can be very effective in filtering out spam.

Send questions to or Personal Tech, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Questions are answered only in this column.

Solutions: Use 'Open With' dialog window to access e-mails 01/17/10 [Last modified: Sunday, January 17, 2010 5:57pm]
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