One of the great features of later versions of the Windows operating system is that they can mount ISO files without the need of a third-party application. This is quite useful, especially when you’re dealing with large software downloads. These days, a lot of files are available for download in the .iso format. It is basically the easier option over burning the files to a disk.

However, several users have reported issues when they tried mounting ISO files. If you’re one of the people who encountered such errors and you want to know how to fix ISO issues on Windows 10, then you’ve come to the right place. We have a list of solutions you can try to resolve this problem.

Method 1: Updating your drivers

If you were trying to mount an ISO file from a DVD or CD when you encountered an error, it is likely that there’s something wrong with your drivers. This is true especially when you’re absolutely certain that the file is not incomplete or corrupted. To resolve this problem, you have to update your drivers.

You can do this manually or you can automate the process, using Auslogics Driver Updater. We always recommend the latter for many good reasons. For instance, if you manually update your drivers, you’d have to spend a significant amount of time searching for compatible and updated versions on the manufacturer’s website. On the other hand, when you use Auslogics Driver Updater, you would only have to click a button and you can update all your drivers to their latest manufacturer-recommended versions. You do not have to worry about installing incorrect drivers because this reliable tool can automatically recognize your system! Once the process is complete, you can now mount ISO files from a DVD or CD. What’s more, you will notice a significant improvement in your computer’s speed and performance.


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Method 2: Using Windows Explorer to open the ISO file

As we’ve mentioned, Windows 10 allows users to open ISO or Image (IMG) files without the help of a third-party application. In some cases, a bug from a recent update can affect file association features on a Windows operating system. It is also possible that your system is having trouble recognizing ISO files. Consequently, it does not automatically set a default application for mounting or accessing the files. You can easily fix this issue by following the instructions below:

  1. Go to the ISO file you want to open.
  2. Right-click the file, then select Open With.
  3. Another menu will show up. Select Windows Explorer.

You should be able to see the files within the ISO file. This should allow you to automatically mount the files on your drive.

Method 3: Unmounting all drives

It is also possible that you’ve mounted the ISO file on a virtual drive. Because of the auto-replace function, you might be prevented from mounting the new ISO file over the existing one. Some users reported that they had been able to resolve this issue by unmounting all their virtual drives. With that said, follow the instructions below:

  1. On your keyboard, press Windows Key+E. This should open File Explorer.
  2. Go to the left bar menu and click This PC.
  3. Right-click a virtual drive, then click Eject. Do this for every virtual drive available on your computer.
  4. Restart your computer.
  5. Try mounting the ISO file on any available slot.

Method 4: Uninstalling your third-party ISO application

Perhaps, you’ve tried mounting ISO files, using third-party programs like Daemon Tools or Alcohol 120%. As we’ve mentioned, the problem might be caused by file association errors. As such, we advise you to uninstall any third-party ISO applications on your computer to resolve the issue.

If you’ve already uninstalled the third-party virtual drive program and the error persists, it is possible that its entries are still in the registry. You can resolve this problem by cleaning the registry and removing entries related to the ISO file association. You can manually roam through Registry Editor, but we strongly advise that you use a reliable tool like Auslogics Registry Cleaner instead.

Clean Windows Registry to fix Windows 10 errors when mounting ISO files.

It is worth noting that the registry is a sensitive database. Just misplacing a comma can prevent you from properly booting your computer! So, before you decide to manually clean your registry, you have to be absolutely certain that you can perform the changes correctly. Here are the steps you should follow:

  1. Click the Search icon.
  2. Type “regedit” (no quotes).
  3. Right-click regedit from the results, then select Run as Administrator.
  4. Navigate to the following path: Computer\HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.iso
  5. Create a backup of your registry.
  6. Check if a third-party ISO tool is still associated with your ISO extension. If so, right-click the Default entry.
  7. Replace the entry under Value Data with “Windows.IsoFile” (no quotes), then click OK.
  8. Restart your computer and check if this resolves the issue.

Learning how to fix ISO issues on Windows 10 is easier when you opt to use Auslogics Registry Cleaner. This tool automatically scans corrupted, duplicate, and outdated registry entries. With a click of a button, you can remove old ISO-related entries and resolve the issue. The best part is, this tool is absolutely free!

Method 5: Tweaking via PowerShell

Sparse flagging is typically imposed on NTFS partitions with bigger sections of binary zeros. In some cases, users have trouble accessing ISO files through Windows Explorer because the file containers have been flagged. You can address this issue by removing the flag from the ISO file, using PowerShell. With that said, follow the steps below:

  1. Right-click Windows Key, then select Windows PowerShell (Admin).
  2. Paste the following command, then press Enter:
    Note: Make sure you change ‘FilePath’ and ‘FileName’ accordingly.
    fsutil sparse setflag “C:\FilePath\FileName.iso” 0
  3. Exit PowerShell, then try mounting the ISO file again.
    The other option for removing the sparse flag from the ISO file is by using a Batch file. Just follow the instructions below:
  4. Right-click any empty area on your Desktop.
  5. Select New, then choose Text Document.
  6. Open the new text document, then paste the following entries:
    fsutil sparse queryflag %1
    fsutil sparse setflag %1 0
    fsutil sparse queryflag %1
  7. Once you’ve pasted the entries, click File in the text document’s Menu Bar.
  8. Select Save As, then name the file.
  9. Make sure you replace the .txt extension with “.bat” (no quotes).
  10. Drag the ISO file over the batch file you just created.
  11. Restart your computer and try mounting your ISO file, using Windows Explorer.

Do you have other suggestions for mounting ISO files?
We’re looking forward to hearing your ideas in the comments below!