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How to Fix Can’t Download, Open or Preview Attachments on Outlook Web App

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The Outlook web app is a web-based email client where you can access and organize all your emails in one place. You can launch it using any web browser on any device including your desktop or laptop computer as well as on your phone or tablet.

You can also download and open or preview attachments via the Microsoft Outlook web app. If someone sent you a video, image, excel file, or pdf file, just click the download button to open it. However, some users report that they can’t view attachments in Outlook. If you experience the same error when downloading or opening attached files on your mail, you can try to resolve the problem with several solutions we have listed below.

How-to-Troubleshoot-Fix-Unable-to-Download-Open-Attachments-on-Outlook-Web-App
Photo credit: Ed Hardie/Unsplash

How to Troubleshoot & Fix Unable to Download & Open Attachments on Outlook Web App

There are different reasons why attachments cannot be downloaded or previewed on your MS Outlook web email app. It can be an issue with the file extension or format. Your device may not be compatible with the file. In some cases, your antivirus is blocking the attachment. A corrupted file can also be a cause of the error. You can troubleshoot the issue with the methods below.

Method #1 – Check Preview Settings on Outlook

  • Launch the Outlook Web app and click the gear icon to open the Settings menu.
  • Choose Options.
  • Select Active View Settings.
  • Click Always show previews.
  • Click the Save button.

Method #2 – Use a Different Web Browser

If you have another browser on your device, you can try to launch the Outlook Web app from there. Check if you can download or preview the attachments from your email messages. If yes, you can check the safety settings of your previous browser and see if it is blocking attachments.

Method #3 – Select Save to OneDrive

Do you have a OneDrive account? If you do, you can choose to save it there instead of downloading or previewing the attachment. Click Save to OneDrive. After saving the file, access your OneDrive account and open the attachment there.

Method #4 – Use the Outlook Lighter Version

  • On your Outlook, navigate to the Settings menu.
  • Select Mail.
  • Navigate to General.
  • Go to Display Settings.
  • Select Version of Outlook Web App.
  • Look for Use the Lighter version of Outlook Web App and check the box next to it.
  • Log out of your account.
  • Now, re-login to your account to activate the lighter version of the Outlook Web app.

Method #5 – Open the Attachment via Microsoft Outlook Client

If you cannot download the attachment from the web app, you can use the desktop client. Launch your Microsoft Outlook client and try to download the file there.

Method #6 – Clear your Web Browser Cache and Cookies

  • Navigate to More Tools, Settings, or History of your web browser.
  • Go to Clear Cache or Clear Browsing Data.
  • Set the Time Range to All Time and check the boxes next to cache, cookies, and history.
  • Click the Clear Cache button.

Do you have other ideas on how to fix the Outlook error? You can tell us in the comment section below.

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