Search Support

Avoid support scams. We will never ask you to call or text a phone number or share personal information. Please report suspicious activity using the “Report Abuse” option.

Learn More

EXE files from some sites fail to download to desktop

more options

So here is the problem. I can save any file with no problem when it comes to the default DOWNLOADS folder. But I like to save files to my desktop. Used too, from version 30 and older, I could save to desktop with no problems. But ever since version 31, it has been failing more and more when it comes to EXE files. I have reset, reinstalled, fresh installed, even an I.E. reset and many other options suggested on many forums. After a lot of digging I tried to make the problem show up when I save to my Downloads folder and the fails do not happen. But i save the EXE to my desktop and it fails 100% of the time. I have tried running firefox with and without administrator mode. ( Right clicking and choosing Run as Administrator )

This problem has creeped into firefox over the last several version updates. ( 31.x + )

Side note : It happens at random websites. In I.E. or Chrome, those sites save the files just fine, but in firefox it will fail if I save to desktop. Again, If I choose the Downloads folder it saves just fine. I have tested this with and without ad-ons. So the ad-ons are not the problem. In fact the only ad-on I currently am using is the adblock plus. I have tested this without that ad-on and the problem still persists. I have even tested this problem without an anti-virus, and the problem still persists.

EXAMPLE : Test with Blender.org.. Choose the USA x64 Bit version and save the install EXE file and you should be able to duplicate the problem.

Attached screenshots

All Replies (7)

more options

This could be caused by your anti-virus or other program.

Start Firefox in Safe Mode {web Link} by holding down the <Shift>
(Mac Options)
key, and then starting Firefox. Is the problem still there?


Start your Computer in safe mode with networking. Then start Firefox. Try Safe web sites. Is the problem still there?

Starting The Computer In Safe Mode;
Free Online Encyclopedia

more options

You apparently didn't read my message. Re-Read it. I said I checked all that.

more options

I had missed the part of turning off the anti-virus, but there is no mention of Firefox or the computer in Safe Mode. Please try both.

more options

Note that Firefox uses data from Google's Safe Browsing to check whether files from a website are safe to download. You can set the browser.safebrowsing.appRepURL pref to an empty string value on the about:config page to disable this feature.

Bypass Firefox's Blocked: May contain a virus or spyware message - gHacks Tech News:

more options

I tried both the recommendation about removing the string for browser.safebrowsing.appRepURL as well as the holding SHIFT key down and starting firefox in safe mode. Failed EXE both times. As I mentioned I have refreshed and complete fresh install of firefox. The problem still persists.

And yes, I did try to run Windows in Safe Mode with networking, same problem. Firefox fails the EXE download when saving to desktop. Again, the only time it doesn't fail is when I download EXEs to the default Downloads folder when I first install firefox. If I go BACK to using that folder, the EXE download works. But to save to desktop, fails every time. I am still using Blender.org as its been my test subject. This affects any EXE I try to download from multiple sites. So I just use Blender.org because I constantly get their updates from there anyhow.

Also, again, keep in mind, this only affects EXE files. Not Zip or any other file extension.

more options

Did you check the Windows %temp% folder in case the files get stuck there?

more options

Yea, and I even had tested a fresh install of windows, still failed EXE downloads. This problem started with version 31.x of firefox.. then for some reason in version 32 and 35 it worked again, then any version after 31, other then those two versions, it doesn't work.