FIX: Error opening file message in Paint.NET

Vladimir Popescu
by Vladimir Popescu
Managing Editor
Last update:
Affiliate Disclosure

  • The Paint.NET there was an error opening the file message occurs due to a faulty installation.
  • We suggest installing another third-party program to quickly get rid of the error message.
  • Also, try disabling your Firewall and Antivirus software by following our solution.
  • Use our method to change the file format before you try opening it again for an easy fix.
fix error opening file message in Paint.NET
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A large number of users have seen the Error opening file message in Paint.NET. This error is more common than you might think.

This issue can be caused either by a faulty installation of Paint.net, a conflict between your antivirus or firewall software and Paint, or using a wrong image format for the specific project.

Seeing this error message every time you want to open an image inside Paint can become extremely annoying over time.

We compiled the best solutions in this article, so please read this guide carefully. It is also recommended that after you try each method, you try to check if the issue is still there or not.


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How can I fix the Paint.NET opening file error?

1. Try saving the file in another format

  1. Download and Install Gimp.
  2. Right-click the image with issues.
  3. Select Open with, then choose Gimp from the application list.
  4. Inside the Gimp window click File, then Save as.
  5. In the newly opened pop-up window -> choose a name for your file and also a location on your hard-drive.
  6. Click on the drop-down list next to Format choose JPEG, BMP, or PNG (depending on your needs and original file format), then click Save.

In the case of some users, the issue was caused by the extremely big size of the file they were working on.

This can be caused by saving the image either in a format that doesn’t exist or in the wrong format for your circumstances. To save the file that’s causing trouble in another format, you can follow these steps:

Change file format manually:

  1. Right-click the image file you’re trying to modify then choose Rename.
  2. Type a name for your file.
  3. Delete the .jpg, or .png format next to the name.
  4. Type the desired new format.
  5. Click anywhere on the screen to de-select the image and save it in a new format.

Does Paint.NET fail to install on Windows 10? Fix it by reading this article.


2. Disable antivirus and firewall software

How to disable windows firewall:

  1. Open Start button.
  2. Click on Settings, then Update & Security.
  3. Choose Firewall & Network protection.
  4. Select a Network profile.
  5. Then, under Microsoft Defender Firewall toggle the option On/Off.

In some cases, the conflict that generated the Paint.net error opening file issue on Windows 10 was caused by a third-party antivirus and firewall software.

Simply un-install or stop the protection of these two software options, and check to see if the issue persists. If it does, please follow the next method presented in this article.

Note: each Antivirus software has its own interface so there are different ways of disabling or turning them off depending on which one you use.


3. Reinstall Paint.Net

paint.net website - Paint.net error opening file
  1. Press Win+X keys then select Programs and Features.
  2. Find Paint.NET in the list
  3. Select it then click Uninstall.
  4. Download the latest Paint.NET version.
  5. Open it and follow the on-screen instructions.

We hope these methods helped you solve your issue with Paint.NET not opening the file.

Please feel free to let us know if you have any suggestions, by using the comments section found below.


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