Windows 10

Windows 10 Photos Package Could Not Be Opened Fix

We all run into pesky little operating system and application issues from time to time. Due to creating a lot of blog content, I deal with a lot of photos on a daily basis. I have photo capturing and editing software that I use, but typically just for quickly previewing or viewing files in Windows 10, I simply use the Windows 10 Photos app for doing this. It is built-in, handy, and quick to look at what you need to when quickly viewing a photo. The other day, I had an issue that came up seemingly out of nowhere with an error when trying to open images in Windows 10 photos. Let’s take a look at Windows 10 Photos package could not be opened fix and see this error and the quick steps to get the photos app working again.

Windows 10 Package Could Not Be Opened Error

As mentioned, I don’t remember rebooting, installing updates, etc. Just simply had the issue start cropping up with my Windows 10 Photo Viewer. The error looked like this:

Windows 10 Photos Package Could Not Be Opened Error

Like any good Windows admin, the first thing I tried was a typical reboot to resolve the issue with the app. Generally, we can get around issues with Windows 10 application issues that crop up by a simple reboot of the system.

This did not work with resolving the issue. After the reboot did not work, I started looking at other means to resolve issues with Windows Photos.

The Windows Photos app is one of the default apps that gets installed with Windows 10 and is now managed via the Windows Store type interface contained in Windows 10 Apps configuration. Let’s see how we can reset the Windows 10 Photos App to resolve the Package could not be opened error.

Windows 10 Photos Package Could Not Be Opened Fix

As it turns out for me, reseting the Windows 10 Photos app resolved my issue. The reset process is described in the official Microsoft troubleshooting KB found here:

You can repair some apps and programs if they’re not running correctly. Note that you won’t see repair, change, or modify options for all apps and programs.

  • Repair options from the Settings page
    • Select the Start  button, then select Settings  > Apps > Apps & features. Or just click the shortcut link at the bottom of this article.
    • Select the app you want to fix.
    • Select the Advanced options link under the name of the app (some apps don’t have this option). On the page that opens, select Repair if it’s available. If it isn’t available or doesn’t fix the problem, select Reset.
  • Repair options from the Control Panel
    • In the search box on the taskbar, type Control Panel and select it from the results.
    • Select Programs Programs and Features.
    • Right-click the program you want to fix and select Repair, or if that’s not available, select Change. Then follow the directions on the screen.

Following the steps listed by Microsoft here, I opened Windows 10 Settings. I like to use the Windows Key + I shortcut. Choose the Apps link.

Launching Windows Settings Apps to reset the Windows Photos App

Simply click the Apps & Features link under the Apps menu on the left side. Scroll down and choose Photos.

Find Photos under the Apps & Features menu

Under the configuration window that opens, you have several things you can do here. However, what we are interested in is the Reset functionality at the bottom of the configuration Window.

The functionality and feature of this reset button is very similar to what we are all accustomed to with mobile apps on phones. As you can see on the description on the Window “If the app isn’t working right, reset it. This app will be reinstalled and revert to its default settings. Your documents will not be affected“.

Resetting the Photos App to defaults

When you click Reset you will get a confirmation box of sorts. A slight warning here on any app you reset. This will permanently delete the app’s data on this device, including your preferences and sign-in details.

Confirming the reset of the Photos application

You don’t really get a pop up dialog that the reset is successful aside from a green check box next to the Reset button.

The reset of the Photos app was successful

In my case, the reset of the Photos app resolved the package could not be opened error. After resetting, I could once again open images in preview with the photos app.

Wrapping Up

As the Windows 10 Photos Package Could Not Be Opened Fix demonstrates the little app reset functionality contained in Windows 10 is a great troubleshooting tool that Microsoft has built-in for the default apps that come installed with Windows 10. I am glad to see they have made available the means to reinstall these default apps in the operating system without having to run a full repair installation on the operating system which would be extremely cumbersome and taking the “sledge hammer” approach. Be sure to check out the app reset functionality and add it to your bag of troubleshooting tips with these built-in apps that may experience issues from time to time.

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Brandon Lee

Brandon Lee is the Senior Writer, Engineer and owner at and has over two decades of experience in Information Technology. Having worked for numerous Fortune 500 companies as well as in various industries, Brandon has extensive experience in various IT segments and is a strong advocate for open source technologies. Brandon holds many industry certifications, loves the outdoors and spending time with family.

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