[Fixed] EXE File Automatically Deleted in Windows 10

Found exe file automatically deleted in Windows 10? Don’t worry; this tutorial will teach you how to stop Windows from deleting exe files and restore them.


By Lora / Updated on April 3, 2024

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How do I stop Windows from deleting EXE files?

Some users discovered that their newly-downloaded EXE file automatically deleted in Windows 10, which is strange but not rare.


Windows 10 won't run exe files, and it auto deletes them.


Since installing/updating to Win 10, exe files either won't run or disappear when I click them. I cannot find a solution.


- Question from Microsoft Community


Have you ever met this issue? If so, don't worry; you are not the only one who wants to know how to stop Windows from deleting exe files.

This article aims to answer why is Windows automatically deleting files and how to solve it. Before the solutions, it will be better to discuss the causes of this problem.


Why EXE file is deleted itself?

Some users have noticed exe files getting deleted automatically when clicked; some may found that the exe files disappeared right after it was downloaded.

There are basically two reasons.

  1. The downloaded exe file is genuinely a virus and was removed by your antivirus apps;
  2. Your antivirus or Windows Defender suspected it was a virus.

Exe files are always suspicious from the perspective of Windows Defender and antivirus. Viruses and malware write their code to the host program when executed.  Therefore the antivirus stays alert to the exe files.

Viruses are so dangerous that they cause corruption, lead to data loss, damage your computer, and sometimes forces you to remove virus using CMD because the user interface is damaged.

Once an antivirus detects suspicious items, it quarantines them and sometimes even removes them directly.


Moreover, permission conflicts and software errors can also lead to this, but pretty seldom.

Then, what if you are sure the downloaded exe files are safe? Check out the solutions below to prevent antivirus deleting exe files and recover them safely.

Troubleshoot: exe file automatically deleted in Windows 10

The exe files getting removed forces users to re-download them repeatedly, which is relatively upsetting and troublesome. But you could take some measures to stop it.

 Please be careful and ensure the exe files you want to download are safe.

Fix 1. Add the exe file to the exclusion of Windows Defender

The first thing you can do is check your antivirus. Here we take the Windows Defender as an example. Windows Defender has a Virus & threat protection feature, protecting your device from viruses.

It scans the hard disk and quarantines fishy programs/files/file types, etc. If you found Windows Defender automatically deleted files, you can add an exclusion to eliminate this issue.

It is suggested to run a full scan to ensure the security of your Windows device. 
It is not recommended to add the "exe" extension to the file type exclusion。

Step 1. Start menu > Windows Settings > Update & Security > Windows Security > Virus & threat protection.


Step 2. Scroll down and find Virus & threat protection settings > Manage settings.


Step 3. Find Exclusions > click Add or remove exclusions.


Step 4. Click Add an exclusion > add the exe files/a particular folder/process to the excluded list according to your situation; e.g., you can add the exe file you downloaded or the Downloads folder to this list.


This way, you can stop the "exe file automatically deleted in windows 10" issue from happening again.

Fix 2. Run the exe as an administrator

As mentioned above, permission conflicts may lead to this issue as well. You often don't want to run as an administrator because giving privileges to all outside software is dangerous.

Also, an administrator privilege prevents you from mistakenly deleting essential files and causing damage.

But, if you are aware of the exe file you downloaded, you could give it a try to run the program as an administrator.

It is not suggested to sign out and log on as an administrator. Please select to run this only program as admin.

>> Go to the download folder/root directory of the exe file you downloaded > locate the exe file > right-click on it > Run as administrator.


Fix 3. Uninstall the mal-functioned update

If you found an exe file automatically deleted in Windows 10 after the update, the update might be the culprit.

Sometimes, upgrading Windows OS may bring improvements as well as errors and bugs. It is not rare – some users have found files missing after the Windows 10 update.

If you can confirm which update caused this issue, you could uninstall it and see if the antivirus deletes exe files again.

Step 1. Go to the Start menu > Windows Settings > Update & Security.


Step 2. Click Windows Update > View update history.


Step 3. Click Uninstall updates.


Step 4. Find the newly-installed update file > right-click it > Uninstall.


Vice versa, issues may bother you if you have missed an update that fixes the bugs. Visit the Microsoft update page and see if there are updates you can download.

How to recover deleted exe files effortlessly?

After the "exe file automatically deleted in Windows 10" issue is solved, you may want to restore the removed exe files.

Firstly, if you are using Windows Defender, you could check the protection history and see if the downloaded exe file was quarantined. If so, you could directly restore it from there.

If not, then how to recover deleted files in Windows 10? A professional Windows data recovery tool will be a safe and rational choice.

MyRecover can be your firm helper. It is developed by a sophisticated team with 10+ years of experience, possessing advanced scanning techs and ensuring high security.

With the help of its safe and efficient features, you could have the green lights to restore your wanted exe files.

100% safe & clean. Offer a secure payment process that is SLL-secured. 
Easy-to-operate. All users without expertise or knowledge can recover data in 3 steps. 
All-inclusive. Apply to multiple data loss situations, e.g., virus attack, system crash, deletion, formatting, recycle bin emptying, etc. 
Convenient. Keep the original formats, filenames, and paths of the deleted files while recovering. 
Compatible. Support Windows 11/10/8/7/Server. Windows Server users can also use it to restore deleted files in Windows Server 2016, 2019, 2022, etc.

Now, check the detailed instructions to perform Windows data recovery effortlessly.

Download SoftwareWin 11/10/8/7/Server
Secure Download

Step 1. Install and run MyRecover > Hover the mouse over the drive saved deleted files before, and click Scan.


Step 2. Use filters like Type, Size, Path, etc., to sort the scanned files. Or, input "exe" to locate your deleted exe files quickly.


Step 3. Choose Deleted files > go to the original file location, or the Recycle Bin > select the deleted exe files > click Recover x files.


This powerful tool can also restore deleted zip files.

Related suggestions

Users who discovered the exe file automatically deleted in Windows 10 could check out this page with detailed methods.

Except for adding exclusions, running as admin, and uninstalling updates, you might as well use the efficient data recovery software – MyRecover to recover deleted files in Windows 10 safely.

Also, some suggestions are ready to help you improve your data security.

  • Use antivirus or Windows Virus & threat protection to keep your computer safe.
  • Update the AV programs regularly.
  • Do not visit suspicious sites or click untrusted email links.
  • Download files/apps from trustworthy sites.
  • Back up essential files using secure data backup software for Windows.
Lora · Editor
Lora is an editor of AOMEI Technology. She is also a tester and editor of AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. -- "Keep testing, write the most useful tutorials for helping people recover the lost data for Windows and phones" is the most meaningful thing for her. Dedicated to creating helpful tutorials, she hopes her tutorial can assist users to effortlessly solve data loss problems on their personal computers and mobile phones.