Opening attachments from emails

This may be a temporary problem as we are talking about changing our whole email system for the students but…

We have had a number of students in the library lately having trouble opening attachments from their emails. The reason for this is that our email system drops off the file extension so that, when the file is saved, the file type is unknown.

For Students

Fortunately, this is pretty easy to fix on the students’ machines, you just have to rename the file. You go about this in the same way that you rename any file: right-click the file and select rename, name the file and add the correct extension at the end (i.e. example.docx).

On staff laptops

On our machines it is a little bit more complicated. You will need to open Windows Explorer (Windows Key + E)> Tools> Folder Option then switch it from the General to the View tab and then uncheck the ‘hide extensions for known file types’ box. This will mean that you can see and change file extensions.


Because of the nice clean interface of Windows 7, if you have a tablet it is one step more complicateder still: when you open Windows Explorer (Windows Key + E) to get to the tools menu (or any menu for that matter) you will need to hit the Alt key.

File extensions

Some of the ones that we have had trouble with in the library have been:

  • Word.docx
  • Kahootz.ktz
  • Inspiration.isf

For a really big and not very useful list of file extensions, click here. If you have any to add, put them in the comments below.


About timthelibrarian

Tim Harwood is a Teacher Librarian and eLearning enthusiast.
This entry was posted in Attachments, Email, File extensions. Bookmark the permalink.

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