The linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook [Guide]

Madalina Dinita
by Madalina Dinita
Former Managing Editor
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  • Outlook normally displays images from incoming emails.
  • Sometimes you get the infamous red X button and the linked image cannot be displayed.
  • For more options to picks from, take a closer look at these great Windows 10 email clients.
  • This Outlook Troubleshooting Hub is dedicated to any possible issue you might encounter.
Fix The linked image cannot be displayed

Many Outlook users have encountered an error message when trying to display a linked image.

Outlook normally displays images from incoming emails, but oftentimes users get the infamous red X button and the message the linked image cannot be displayed.

The error mainly occurs in Outlook 2013 and Outlook 2016 users. The linked image cannot be displayed message in Outlook can be quite annoying and prevent you from viewing your emails properly.

Let’s see how to easily correct that.


How do I fix an Outlook image that can’t be displayed?

1. Use webmail or a different email client

try out a different email client

If you lack the time to follow all the bellow-mentioned steps, you might be able to avoid that simply by switching to webmail.

Many email providers offer webmail so you can easily check your email from any browser. If webmail is not your preferred method, you might want to try using a different email client.

Windows 10 already has its own Mail app, but if you want a proper Outlook replacement, we suggest that you try out Mailbird – winner of Most popular mail alternative 2020.

This is a great email app client that allows you to add multiple mail accounts to it.

You can centralize and classify all your emails with ease and choose from countless free color themes. If you use your mail account on a daily basis, then Mailbird is the perfect mail app to download.

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When the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook, the powerful Mailbird is a great alternative to try out.
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2. Check your antivirus software

try out Bitdefender

In some instances, it’s possible that your antivirus is causing this issue.

If the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook, it might be possible that email protection feature is causing the problem.

To fix the problem, open email protection settings and try disabling certain features. If that doesn’t help, you might have to disable your antivirus altogether.

In some cases, the only way to fix this issue is to remove your antivirus, so you might want to try that as well.

Even if you remove your third-party antivirus, you’ll still be protected by Windows Defender on Windows 10, so there’s no need to worry about your safety.

Many users had this issue with McAfee, but other antivirus applications can also cause this problem to appear.

For the Norton users, we’ve got a dedicated guide on how to completely remove it from your PC. There’s a similar guide for McAffe users, as well.

If you’re using any antivirus solution and you want to completely remove it from your PC, be sure to check out this amazing list with the best uninstaller software you can use right now.

After removing the antivirus, check if the problem is still there. If the problem doesn’t appear, you should consider switching to a different antivirus.

Bitdefender offers great protection, and it won’t interfere with your PC in any way, so if you’re looking for a new antivirus, we strongly recommend you to get a Bitdefender license.

Get now Bitdefender (major discount)


Looking to change your antivirus with a better one? Here’s a list with our top picks.


3. Modify the registry

1. Press Windows Key+R to open a Run dialog box, and type regedit and press Enter.
The linked image cannot be displayed Office 365
2. Locate and select the following subkey:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Officex.0\Common
    DWORD: BlockHTTPimages
    Value: 1

or this subkey if the Group Policy is enabled

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\policies\Microsoft\Officex.0\Common
    DWORD: BlockHTTPimages
    Value: 1

3. Right-click the BlockHTTPimages key > select Delete, and confirm the deletion.

5. Go to the File menu, and click Exit.

According to users, sometimes the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook due to certain issues in your registry.

Your registry holds all sorts of values, and if one of those values is corrupted, you might encounter this and many other problems.

As always, before modifying the registry, back it up in case anything goes wrong.

However, you can fix that problem by completing the above procedure. After making these changes to the registry, check if the problem is still there.

If you can’t edit your Windows 10’s registry, read this handy guide and find the quickest solutions to the issue.

Can’t access the Registry Editor? Things aren’t as scary as they seem. Check out this simple guide and solve the issue quickly.


4. Relocate your Temporary Internet Files folder (IE)

  1. Press Windows Key + S and enter internet options.
  2. Choose Internet Options from the list of results.
    Outlook the linked image cannot be displayed the file may have been moved
  3. In the Browsing history section click the Settings button.
    The linked image cannot be displayed Office 365
  4. Now click the Move folder button and choose a new location for temporary Internet files.
    Outlook 2016 error the linked image cannot be displayed

After doing that, save changes and restart your PC. Once your PC restarts, check if the problem is still there.

Sometimes the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook due to your Temporary Internet Files folder.

The contents of this folder can get corrupted, and the best way to fix the issue is to choose a different location for a new Temporary Internet Files folder.

By doing so, you’ll recreate the Temporary Internet Files directory. To choose a new location for Temporary Internet Files, follow the above steps.


Need to know how to open Temporary Internet files? Find out more in this article.


5. Disable the setting for encrypted pages

  1. Open Internet Options window.
    • We showed you how to do that in one of our previous solutions.
  2. Navigate to the Advanced tab.
    • In the Security section, disable Do not save encrypted pages to disk option.
    • Now click Apply and OK to save changes.
      Outlook email signature the linked image cannot be displayed

According to users, sometimes the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook due to certain settings.

Sometimes certain settings can lead to various issues, but you can solve the problem simply by disabling them. After disabling this option, check if the problem is still there.


6. Repair the Office Outlook app

  1. Press Windows Key + S and enter control panel.
  2. Select Control Panel from the list of results.
    Outlook the linked image cannot be displayed the file may have been moved
  3. Head over to the Programs and Features section.
    The linked image cannot be displayed Office 365
  4. A list of installed applications should now appear.
  5. Locate Microsoft Office on the list and click Repair.
  6. Select Online Repair and click Repair once again to confirm.
  7. Now follow the instructions on the screen to repair the Office installation.
    Outlook 2010 error the linked image cannot be displayed

If the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook, it’s possible that your Office installation is corrupted. To fix this problem, it’s advised to repair the installation.

After the Office installation is repaired, check if the problem is still there.

You can’t open Control Panel? Take a look at this step-by-step guide to find a solution.


7. Add a sender to the Safe Senders List

add sender to Safe Senders List

  1. In Outlook, go to the Home tab, click Junk, and choose Junk E-mail Options.
  2. Head over to the Safe Senders tab and check Automatically add people I e-mail to the Safe Senders List check box.

In order to fix the problem with linked images, it’s important that you add a specific sender to a Safe Senders List.

In addition, you can also add the entire domain to the Safe Senders List. To do that, just follow the above procedure.

In addition, there should be an option to add individual emails and domains to the Safe Senders List, so you can add only specific contacts and domains.

After making these changes, check if the problem is still there.


8. Create a new user account

  1. Open the Settings app by using Windows Key + I shortcut.
  2. When the Settings app opens, navigate to the Accounts section.
    Outlook email signature the linked image cannot be displayed
  3. Select Family & other people from the left pane.
  4. Now click Add someone else to this PC button in the right pane.
    Outlook the linked image cannot be displayed the file may have been moved
  5. Now select I don’t have this person’s sign-in information.
    The linked image cannot be displayed Office 365
  6. Choose to Add a user without a Microsoft account.
    Outlook 2013 error the linked image cannot be displayed
  7. Enter the desired username for the new account and click Next.
    Outlook email signature the linked image cannot be displayed

According to users, if the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook, the issue might be your user account.

Sometimes the user account can get corrupted, and this can lead to this and many other problems.

However, you can fix the issue simply by creating a new user account. After creating a new user account, switch to it and check if the problem is still there.

If the issue doesn’t appear on the new account, you’ll need to move your personal files to it and start using it instead of your old account.

If you’re having trouble opening the Setting app, take a look at this detailed article to solve the issue.


Windows won’t let you add a new user account? Follow these easy steps then!


9.  Reinstall Outlook

how to reinstall Outlook

If the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook, you might want to try reinstalling it. Sometimes the Outlook installation can be corrupted, and one way to fix it is to reinstall Outlook.

There are several ways to do that, but the most effective one is to use uninstaller software.

In case you don’t know, uninstaller software is a special application that will completely remove all files and registry entries associated with an application.

By using uninstaller software such as Revo Uninstaller, you can completely remove Outlook from your PC.

This tool will also help you remove any leftovers of the deleted software thus keeping your system safe from unknown errors.

Get now Revo Uninstaller Pro 

Once Outlook is removed, install it again and the problem should be resolved.


Which solution worked for you? Leave your answer along with any other questions or suggestions in the comments section below and we’ll be sure to take a look.

Speaking of these solutions, apply them when encountering similar issues:

  • The linked image cannot be displayed Office 365 – According to users, this issue can be caused by your antivirus software and in order to fix it, you might have to disable your antivirus.
  • The linked image cannot be displayed. The file may have been moved renamed or deleted– This issue can appear if there’s a problem with a Temporary Internet Files directory. Simply move this directory to a different location and the problem should be resolved.
  • Outlook 2016, 2013, 2010 error the linked image cannot be displayed – This issue can affect almost any version of Outlook. However, most of our solutions are compatible with all versions of Outlook, so you should be able to apply them.
  • Outlook email signature the linked image cannot be displayed – If this issue occurs on your PC, you might be able to solve it simply by making a couple of changes in your registry.

FAQ: Read more about Outlook

  • How do you fix the linked image cannot be displayed in Outlook?

Check your antivirus software and modify the Registry. If it sounds too complicated, our full expert guide will help you fix Outlook linked image errors.

  • How do I get images to show in Outlook?

You need to clear the tick from the Don’t download pictures automatically in HTML e-mail messages or RSS items check box, as described in this guide dedicated to getting images to show in Outlook.

  • How do I log into my Outlook email?

Go to the Outlook.com sign-in page and click on Sign in. You can log in with your email address or phone number. If needed, use this guide to fix Outlook not opening issues.


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in October 2018 and has been since revamped and updated in April 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

  • Solution 4 resolved my problem! I tried all other basic steps and I also edited the register, but solution 4 did the trick! Thanks a lot!

  • This is a relatively new problem, likely resulting from one of Microsoft’s limitless supply of mandatory updates. I have followed the instructions EXACTLY to find the “BlockHTTPimages” key. It simply is not there! Well, it may be there someplace, but there is no “x.o” folder under Office, so I have been thwarted at every turn. These directions that you show are identical with those that Microsoft publishes….have you ever actually tried to follow this path? The whole thing is utterly ridiculous. I do not understand how a company that screws up so much can be so successful. Perhaps if Microsoft products worked as they should, Bill Gates wouldn’t be the richest man in the world….or the second richest man in the world.