How to Fix Game Shortcut Links in Vista Games Explorer

information   Information
If you click on any game shortcut link in the Games Explorer window and it does not work or you get the error: This file does not have a program associated with it for performing this action. Create an association in the Set Associations control panel. , then this will show you how to fix this. For missing game shortcuts, you will just need to create and copy a new shortcut into the Games Explorer window.
Note   Note
This usually happens when the XP method of deleting the IsShortcut registry value for .lnk files (Shortcuts), to remove or change the shortcut arrow overlay icon, is used in Vista by mistake. For a safe Vista method, see: How to Remove or Change the Shortcut Arrow and Name in Vista
Tip   Tip
Even though the game shortcuts will not work in Games Explorer, you usually can still open the game from a shortcut of it from another location.
EXAMPLE: Games Explorer Window
NOTE: Other than the links below, you can type Shell:Games in the white line (Start Search) area of the Start menu, or in the Run window, and press Enter.
Game Shortcut Links in Games Explorer Do Not Work-games_explorer-jpg


Using a REG File Download

NOTE: This restores all of the .lnk (shortcuts) default associations in Vista.
1. Click on the Download button below to download the file below.

2. Click on Save, and save the .reg file to the Desktop.

3. Right click on the downloaded .reg file and click on Merge.

4. Click on Run, Continue (UAC), Yes, and then OK when prompted.

5. Log off and log on, or restart the computer to apply the changes.

6. When done, you can delete the downloaded .reg file if you like.


Manually in Registry Editor

NOTE: This only restores the missing default IsShortcut registry value for .lnk (LNK) files (Shortcuts).
1. Open the Start Menu.

2. In the white line (Start Search) area, type regedit and press Enter.

3. Click on Continue in the UAC prompt.

4. In regedit, go to: (See screenshot below)
NOTE: The first letter of lnkfile is a L.
Game Shortcut Links in Games Explorer Do Not Work-reg1-jpg
5. In the right pane, right click on a empty area and click on New and String Value. (See screenshot above)

6. Type IsShortcut and press Enter. (See screenshot below)
Game Shortcut Links in Games Explorer Do Not Work-reg-jpg
7. Close regedit.

8. Log off and log on, or restart the computer to apply the changes.
That's it,