"This app can't open" issue in Windows 11 version 22H2

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 20, 2023
Windows 11 News

This app can't open is a new error message that Windows users may receive when they try to launch certain Windows applications on Windows 11 version 22H2 devices.

With the 2022 Update, Windows 11 Is Finally Worth an Upgrade

Microsoft confirmed the new issue on a new support page. It affects Windows 11 Home, Pro, SE, Enterprise and Education editions, and occurs only on devices with the Windows 11 2022 Update.

The company notes on the support page:

"After running a System Restore to a previous restore point on a device that is running Windows 11, version 22H2, some Windows applications that use the MSIX Windows app package format may experience [..] the following symptoms."

System restore operations, more precisely, the restoring of an older system restore point on a Windows 11 version 22H2 device, may cause one or multiple issues on the system.

The issues that users may experience are versatile. Besides the already mentioned "This app can't open" error that is displayed when the app is launched, users may also notice multiple entries of the same app in the Start menu, that nothing happens when the app is started, or  I/O errors that may lead to app crashes.

Only MSIX Windows app package format applications are affected by the issue. Microsoft confirms that some of its applications, including Microsoft Office, Microsoft Paint, Notepad and Terminal, are affected. The issue is not limited to Microsoft applications, as all apps that use the MSIX Windows app package format may experience the issue.

Affected users may try a number of workarounds, which Microsoft published on the support page. Sometimes, restarting the app may resolve the issue. At other times, reinstallation of the app from the Microsoft Store or the original source it was downloaded from, may resolve it.

Microsoft suggests to run Windows Update also, but this may not resolve the issue just yet as an official fix that is delivered as a Windows Update is not yet available.

Now You: do you use System Restore?

"This app can't open" issue in Windows 11 version 22H2
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"This app can't open" issue in Windows 11 version 22H2
Microsoft confirmed a new issue in Windows 11 version 22H2 that may prevent certain applications from opening on the system.
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  1. Tachy said on January 21, 2023 at 2:46 am


    I don’t use social media so I can only ask for help here.

    Autocreation of Edge Desktop Shortcut.

    How the hell do I stop this?

    It just started recently. Every few days a new shortcut for Edge (Chromium Edge) shows up on my desktop.

    Windows 10 pro and Home

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 21, 2023 at 6:39 am

      This sounds like a bug, or it could be related to the icon removal issue caused by Defender. The old Edge hat a setting to disable the creation of the shortcut, but it does not work in the Chromium Edge anymore.

      Maybe someone else has an idea?

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 21, 2023 at 6:49 am

        You could try this Registry key:

        Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


        Found at Deskmodder. https://www.deskmodder.de/blog/2023/01/20/microsoft-edge-erstellt-nach-jedem-update-eine-verknuepfung-auf-dem-desktop-workaround/

      2. Tachy said on January 21, 2023 at 4:31 pm

        I did some research before posting here, that reg key doesn’t work since edge changed to chromium edge.

        The shrotcut is apparently being created whenever Chromium Edge updates. Stopping it from updating is not an acceptable course of action for me.

        There’s not a lot of chatter about this online yet but I found a few posts on reddit from the last few days of people having the same issue.

      3. Tachy said on January 22, 2023 at 1:20 am

        EDIT: After taking a better look, that regkey is different then the one I saw previously.

        I shall try it, thanks Martin.

  2. Paul(us) said on January 20, 2023 at 3:08 pm

    I am wondering if Windows 11 will be a steady release in 2025.

    1. Tom Hawack said on January 20, 2023 at 5:16 pm

      It seems to me that Microsoft Windows jumps to a new version when the previous one isn’t finished baking.
      There will never be a steady Windows. Version 12 will appear, then 14 (I doubt of a “13), like painting dirty walls before cleaning them first (That’s Microsoft reputation, at least among tech friends here in France). My belief is that Microsoft has given birth to a monster and that rather than reconsidering the very architecture of their OSs the company is setting one patch after another : it’ll never end. We have to get used (do we?) to the fact that Microsoft Windows will perpetuate a continuous beta stage (most already accept it), fixing this and that as users complain. Should the company not have the market share it has users would have all shifted to alternatives. Linux unfortunately frightens many. I’ve followed Microsoft Windows ever since versions 3.x until Seven now and still. Never, ever have previous Windows OSs encountered what they encounter since Windows 10 : never.

      Complex, certainly. The Space shuttle was complex as well and turned out to be a fiasco. NASA stopped its development. NASA is smarter than Microsoft, obviously. Complexity requires thorough testing, far more than simplicity. Microsoft doesn’t seem to test internally, they wait for users, considered as beta-testers, to encounter and endure the various steps of the disease to report them, then it cures the symptoms but never the disease. And if that wasn’t enough, the company parasites it’s monsters with a never seen amount of trackers. What has become of Microsoft? A disaster.

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on January 20, 2023 at 4:54 pm

      Good question. Windows users who want stability may want to use Windows 10 until 2025, as the operating system won’t receive many new, if any, features in the coming three years.

  3. John said on January 20, 2023 at 11:05 am

    Never liked Apps and won’t ever use Apps. Not sure what areas Microsoft is laying off people. But I hope it’s not in Windows development. They seem to be pretty short on talent as it is.

  4. Tom Hawack said on January 20, 2023 at 10:45 am

    “[…] is a new error […] Microsoft confirmed the new issue […]”

    How often haven’t we seen this fact followed by its confirmation, here on Ghacks and elsewhere?
    T’was a Windows 10 odyssey, now it carries on with Windows 11.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 20, 2023 at 4:53 pm

      It is a complex product, but firing quality control teams and turning customers and employees into beta testers has certainly not helped either.

  5. John G. said on January 20, 2023 at 10:25 am

    “Microsoft suggests an update however it won’t solve the problem because there is not a fix yet”.

    Another 10.000 more that need to be fired. Starting with Nadella and Panos.

    1. KH said on January 21, 2023 at 5:30 pm

      agreed; these updates cause more problems, just so these people can pretend to solve them and stay employed.

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