How Do I Stop Windows From Blocking My Downloads?

Files you download from the Internet may be blocked due to your computer system's current security settings. In Microsoft Windows, you can manage advanced security settings using the items available in the Control Panel. Web browsers on your computer can be restricted by the security zone level settings located in the Internet Options dialog. If your Windows Firewall is enabled, it could be restricting access to incoming connections, downloads or other applications on private or public networks.

Hacker typing on a laptop
Windows automatically blocks some files that may harm your computer.
credit: aetb/iStock/Getty Images

All Control Panel Items

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Press "Windows-C" to open the Windows Charms menu. Alternatively, swipe in from the right of your screen.

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Click on the "Search" icon to open the Search charm.

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Type "Control Panel" and then press "Enter" to open the Control Panel.

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Select "Small Icons" from the View By drop-down in the top right of the window to display All Control Panel Items.

Internet Options

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Click "Internet Options" in the All Control Panel Items window.

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Click on the "Security" tab.

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Click the "Default Level" button. This button adjusts your security level to the default state of Medium-High.

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Click the "Custom Level…" button.

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Scroll down to the Downloads section and then click the "Enable" radio button.

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Click the "OK" button to save changes.

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Click "OK" again to close the Internet Options dialog.

Windows Firewall

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Click on the "Windows Firewall" link in the All Control Panel Items window.

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Click on the "Turn Windows Firewall On or Off" link in the left sidebar.

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Uncheck the box next to "Block All Incoming Connections, Including Those in the List of Allowed Apps" under Private Network Settings and Public Network Settings.

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Click the "OK" button to save your changes.