June 13, 2024

Can’t Open JPG Files in Windows 10? Here’s How to Fix It

There are times when, instead of opening a JPG file, your Windows 10 computer displays an error message that reads “this app didn’t start.” Opening a JPG file is a simple task for your computer, and it should be able to do so whenever you want it to.

However, an outdated Windows version, corrupt system files, or a third-party app conflict might stop you from opening a JPG file. No matter the cause, our guide will help you fix this problem.

1. Copy the JPG File and Rename It

Sometimes, you can’t open a JPG file because of a wrong file extension. As such, renaming the file should fix the problem.

Rename it and make sure to add the .jpg extension. Windows will display a message saying the file might become unusable so make sure you copy the original to a different location before editing its name.

It’s better to try this method with a single photo to ensure it works before batch renaming multiple files.

Related: How to Make Windows 10 Show File Extensions

2. Change the File Size

If you have a camera or smartphone capable of taking high-quality images, you’ve likely enjoyed taking some really crisp and clear photos. The only disadvantage is that Windows 10 might not be able to open these large-size files with its default app. To fix it, you could use an image editor or a web app to reduce the JPG file size.


3. Update the Microsoft Photos App

On a Windows computer, Microsoft Photos is the default app for opening JPG files. If the app is outdated or corrupt, it will lead to any sorts of issues, and the inability to open JPG files could be one of them. Updating Windows Photos should fix any bugs, errors, or technical glitches.

Open the Microsoft Store app, click the three-dot menu, and select Downloads and updates. Then check if the Photos app is listed below Available Updates.

Microsoft Store app

4. Change the Default Image Viewer App

If you have installed a third-party image viewer on your computer, it could conflict with the default app and stop you from opening JPG files. To fix it, you should change the default image viewer.

  1. Right-click Start and select Settings.
  2. Head to Apps > Default apps.
  3. Click the photo viewer below Default apps and select Photos from the list.

Setting the default app for images in Windows 10.

5. Repair the Microsoft Photos Apps

Microsoft Photos might’ve stopped working properly because of missing or corrupt files. In this case, you should repair the app. This has the advantage that Windows will check Microsoft Photos files and Registry entries while trying to fix it, but it will keep the app’s current settings.

Follow these steps to repair Microsoft Photos:

  1. Press Win + I to bring up the Settings menu.
  2. Go to Apps > Apps & features.
  3. Select the image viewer and click Advanced options.
  4. Scroll down and click Repair.

Repair the Microsoft Photos app

If this didn’t fix the problem, you can also reset the app. Go through the above instruction and select Reset. This will delete the app’s data from your computer. If you choose to reset the app, you will have to reintegrate OneDrive to sync your photos.

6. Run an SFC Scan

Corrupt system files and settings might stop your computer from opening JPG files. Fortunately, Windows has a built-in tool you can use to fix the problem in no time. The SFC (or System File Checker) will search and automatically replace any corrupted files on your computer.

To use this tool, launch Command Prompt with administrative rights. Then, type sfc/ scannow and press Enter. How long the scan will take depends on your system resources but once it’s complete, it will display a message informing you about any detected problems.

Restart your computer and check if the issue is resolved.

7. Open the JPG File With Another App

If you’ve updated and repaired the app, change the file size, and still can’t open JPG files with the default Windows 10 app, try using a different photo viewer. There are plenty of options available and there’s a chance you have one already installed on your computer.

Related: The Best Windows 10 Photos App Alternatives

Don’t Struggle to Open JPG Files

Microsoft Photos or other image viewers are not the most spectacular apps on your computer but you definitely need them. As shown above, there are multiple tricks or Windows tools for you to try when you can’t open JPG files.

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The Windows 10 Photos app is not just a handy tool for looking at those holiday pics; it can do a lot more than that.

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