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Cannot Open Excel Attachments In Outlook [Solved]


Published By Nilesh Kumar
Debasish Pramanik
Approved By Debasish Pramanik
Published On January 25th, 2024
Reading Time 4 Minutes Reading

If you are facing a problem “Cannot open Excel Attachments in Outlook” when you double click on the Excel attachment in Outlook? If your answer is yes then, you are on the right page. Here we are going to discuss the reason why users are not able to open the spreadsheet file attachments received in Outlook.

As we know that Microsoft Outlook is a great application for sending/receiving emails and organizing files or email folders for better access. Since Outlook is part of Microsoft Office so that it is can easily all the office Words, Excel files very easily. However, sometimes it shows some error will opening any email attachment.

So, after considering all many users’ queries we are going to show you how one can solve the issue “cannot open Excel attachments in Outlook”.

Why Users Cannot Open Excel Attachments in Outlook

There are various possible reasons for this issue. But in this section, we are going to discuss the major once.

  • Sometimes if users disable the protected view option for Outlook attachments, then this issue will occur.
  • The unrecognized file format is also the reason for cannot open Excel attachments in Outlook.
  • If you are using an antivirus protection program on your computer, then make sure it is not causing problems with your attachments.
  • Sometimes Outlook add-in also creates restrictions in attachment opening. So, if  If you are using Microsoft Outlook and facing the issue cannot open Excel attachments in Outlook, then make sure an add-in is not causing the problem. And if it is then disable it. 

How to Fix Cannot Open Excel Attachments in Outlook

The above-mentioned reasons are the most common reasons for the Excel attachment not opening in Outlook 2007 2010 2013 2016 and more. So to solve the problem of cannot open Excel attachment in Outlook follow the listed below manual techniques.

Disable Outlook Add-ins

  • Here are the steps to disable Microsoft Outlook Add-ins
  • Open Microsoft Outlook
  • Click on the file >> Option and then Add-ins
  • Now under manage click on the COM Add-ins
  • Click on the Go button >> Manage and then uncheck all the Add-ins
  • Once every Add-ins is disable click on the Ok
  • After that, restart the Microsoft Outlook

Enable Protected View Option 

As we said above if Protected View for Outlook Attachments is disabled then you might face this cannot open Excel attachments in Outlook. So follow the listed below steps to enable it.

  • Close Microsoft Outlook and open Microsoft Excel.
  • Click on the Option.
  • Now, select Trust Center Settings
  • Now click on the Protected View option and uncheck the following boxes
  1. Enable protected view for file originated from the internet
  1. Enable protected view for a file located in a potentially unsafe location
  1. Enable protected view for Outlook attachments.
  • After that click on the Ok button and close the Excel.
  • Now, restart the Microsoft Outlook

Also Read: How to Extract Outlook Attachments to a Folder

Automated Solution Save All Outlook Attachments in Outlook

After trying all the manual method if you are still facing the issue of Excel attachment not opening in Outlook. Then now there is only one way to fix it. By downloading all the attachment from the Outlook especially the Excel document. And if you are saving it one by one then it will take lots of time.

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So to make the task easy try an automated solution that is capable to download specific email attachments from Outlook in just a few clicks. Outlook Attachments Extractor is the tool that gives users an easy way to download multiple attachments from Outlook PST, OST and, BAK files with the same folder hierarchy.

1. Here are the steps of the tool

2. Download the software and install it on your system.

3. Select the Add File(s) or Add Folder to add Outlook files.

4. Check the Maintain Folder Hierarchy option to preserve the folder structure.

5. Select the destination location to save all attachments

6. Choose the Email option from Select item types

7. Now select the File Type option and enter the Excel extension.

8. At last click on the Extract button to download all the Excel attachments from Outlook.


There are various reasons which are responsible for cannot open Excel attachment in Outlook. In this article, we have discussed all the major reasons including a manual technique to get rid of it. In addition, we also discussed the easiest way to download specific email attachments from Microsoft Outlook.