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File Associations

By d.jones092 ·

I have three Win2k servers in house (SP4), and noticed something strange on our FSMO (PDC, in NT days).

We are unable to change file associations. When going into the system under file types, we are unable to edit any current associations, or create new ones. We used "open with" while trying to open a file, so we could force the issue. This worked, however the "Always use this program to open files of this type" option is not available.

Any thoughts?

Dennis Jones

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by sgt_shultz In reply to File Associations

see if this is you...
from mskb article 257592
On computers running Windows 2000 Terminal Services in Application Server mode, the UI may be locked down so that no one can change file type associations (not even administrators). This is done so that you can only edit the entries programmatically or by using MSI-based applications. This ensures that an inadvertent change in the UI does not effect the global file type associations across the computer running Terminal Services and all of its users. When this policy is enabled, the New, Delete, Change, and Advanced buttons are unavailable on the File Types tab of the Folder Options tool in Control Panel.

You can enable this functionality by changing the following registry entry:
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer] "NoFileAssociate"=dword:00000000

WARNING: If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.

Changing this key from its default value of 00000001 enables the File Types dialog box to function just as it does for other Windows 2000 configurations. Administrators and Power Users can change the global file type settings for the computer and all of its users.

Currently, there is no way through the UI to change or edit the user-specific file type associations stored in the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Classes registry key. If you want to do this, you have to directly edit the registry or develop your own UI to gain access to this information. (You can also send an e-mail message to to request a release of such a tool. If enough requests are received, a tool may be released in a future resource kit or supplement.)

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by d.jones092 In reply to

Great answer. Thanks for the info.

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by d.jones092 In reply to File Associations

This question was closed by the author

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