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Windows Security Warning blocking .asp files

Posted on 2007-04-05
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Last Modified: 2008-01-09
I'm running Vista Home Premium.  A client has sent me a .zip file as an attachment to an email.  I have downloaded the .zip file to my desktop.  This .zip file contains a few .asp files which Windows aparantly sees as being a threat to the system - I assure you the files are clean.

When I attempt to "un-zip" the file, I am getting a "Windows Security Warning" pop-up that reads "Windows found that this file is potentially harmful.  To help protect your computer, Windows has blocked access to this file."

I need to be able to access these files that Windows sees as a threat.  Any ideas?
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Question by:dpalmer2343
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9 Comments
 
LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Adam Leinss
ID: 18869577
You usually get this message if you try downloading risky files within an Internet zone from the Internet.  Try this: save the attachment onto your C: drive.  From Windows Explorer, drill to the file and then try opening it.  Does it open?
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Author Comment

by:dpalmer2343
ID: 18870604
I can access and open the .zip file just fine to view the list of the files included in the archive.  The problem occurs when I try to extract the files from the archive either all at once or one by one.  This appears to be an issue with the built-in .zip file handling of the Vista OS.  

I tried to extract the files using WinRAR and it worked like a charm. No security alerts or blocking occurred.

I understand why Microsoft would implement blocking the extraction of potentially dangerous files from an archive, but there should be a way to allow the extraction after being warned.  Can anyone tell me if this is possible with the built-in .zip file handling in Vista, or am I going to have to stick with a 3rd party tool like WinRAR?
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Expert Comment

by:jafawcett
ID: 18872278
If you can view the files in the zip folder, but just cant unzip the file try this.  Open the zip file and just do a sinple copy and paste of all the files in the the zip to another folder.   This should bypass the security protocals.
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Adam Leinss
ID: 18872525
Sorry, I re-read your question and you did save it outside of your e-mail program.  This article, although written for Windows XP SP2, closely describes your problem: http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=883260.

Part of the article:
"...if you save a compressed file (.zip) that is attached to an e-mail message to your hard disk, the Web content zone information is also saved when you save the compressed file. When you try to extract the contents from the compressed file, or if you try to run a file, you cannot. The Web content zone information is saved together with the files only if the hard disk uses the NTFS file system."

So, the quick fix is to use a freeware ZIP solution, such as ZipCentral if you state that WinRAR works fine.  The long fix is to run "gpedit.msc" from the run command, go to User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Attachment Manager and set "Do not preserve zone information in file attachments"

Interestingly enough, Winzip "honors" the wishes of the Attachment Manager: http://www.winzip.com/es/soft/xattmgr.htm.  If you were to try Winzip instead of Winrar you would have gotten the same message.
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Author Comment

by:dpalmer2343
ID: 18873848
jafawcett:  No go.  I still get the windows security warning message when copying and pasting any of the .asp files.
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Author Comment

by:dpalmer2343
ID: 18873890
aleinss:  I'm running Home Premium so I don't have "gpedit.msc" as an option.  Any Idea as to which registry key(s) to modify to make the change to the attachment manager?
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Adam Leinss earned 2000 total points
ID: 18874067
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Attachments      

Make a key under this branch called:

SaveZoneInformation      

Set the DWORD value of this key to 2
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LVL 22

Expert Comment

by:Adam Leinss
ID: 18874079
Also, since this saves the zone information in the NTFS stream of the file, you will likely have to delete and re-download the file before you see results.  I would also reboot after making the registry change.

And....since this is set in HKCU, the change will only take place for your user profile.
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Author Comment

by:dpalmer2343
ID: 18874158
aleinss:  I don't have anything deeper than HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies

No "Attachments" branch in Home Premium I guess.  Oh well.  I was hoping this would be an easy setting to change, but if it is going to require a deep reg edit, I will just use a 3rd party archive tool.  The Points are yours.  Big thanks to Microsoft for a VERY user friendly new OS. :(

Thanks to everyone for their input.
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