Pictures Don’t Display in Outlook 2013 – Cannot Display Linked Images

Update 6/24/15:  The work-around below worked fine until my customer contacted me and said he couldn’t email out of QuickBooks. So long story short, I had to disable Outlook from running as an administrator so our customer would be able to send emails from Quickbooks using Outlook. If you want more of the background to this issue, read the original portion of this post.

Now that the work around wasn’t going to solve the issue, I had to figure out what was happening. I scoured the Internet trying to find the fix to this problem but no one had the answer for me. I remembered I had written this post so I decided to go over my notes again. I came upon the part about Internet Explorer not downloading executables.  I decided to check that out again. Sure enough, I couldn’t download executables either. I also found this forum, that got me thinking.

I decided to check where Internet Explorer was storing its temporary Internet files. Under current location there was nothing listed. Temporary Internet FilesI thought this was very suspicious so I checked Internet Explorer on my computer. Sure enough under the current location for temporary Internet files I saw a path (C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\WIndows\INetCache).

I also noticed on the defective computer, that temporary Internet files were allowed to take up 0MB. I tried to make that larger but it kept giving me an error.

I decided to move the location of the temporary Internet files to another place on drive C . I allocated 500MB of disk space to temporary Internet files.Temporary Internet Files Fixed I then was forced to log off so these changes could be saved.

Once I logged back into Windows, I opened Internet Explorer and I was now able to download executable files. I then opened Outlook 2013, and found an email that had pictures embedded in it. Much to my delight, the pictures loaded just fine! Every email I clicked, that had pictures in it, loaded just fine!

Conclusion: Many people in the forums and the Internet said to make sure your Outlook temp folder and the Temporary Internet Files folder are empty. However, in my case the temporary Internet files folder wasn’t set properly and was to low to be able to download anything at all. Since Outlook’s picture settings are based off the temporary Internet files settings in Internet Explorer this was causing the photos not to load.

I hope this helps. Please leave a comment below and follow me on Twitter.


Original Post: I recently worked on this problem. The customer was using Microsoft Outlook 2013 for his email client. It was working great except for one thing. Whenever he got an email that had imbedded pictures he couldn’t download the pictures. The error he got when he tried downloading pictures was the following; cannot display linked pictures.

Here is some of the troubleshooting steps I went through and then the eventual work-around I found. I started Outlook 2013 in safe mode. You can start Outlook in Safe Mode by holding the CTRL key when opening the program. This didn’t fix the issue.

I also made sure there were no addins that were causing issues with downloading pictures in Outlook.   There were no additional addins.

I also installed the latest Microsoft Office updates. This too didn’t help.

I noticed McAfee was installed on his computer. I disabled the firewall and some of the other settings but to no avail. I also uninstalled McAfee just in case something in the program was blocking picture downloads.

During my research of this issue, I found Office 2013 is loosely based on Internet Explorer. So I started by changing various Internet Explorer 11 settings. This didn’t help. I tried resetting Internet Explorer back to its default settings, no luck. I knew the customer said he was having trouble with Internet Explorer 11, so I downgraded his browser to IE 10. I then opened Outlook but I was still stuck with the same issue. I also noticed troubleshooting this issue, that if I didn’t start Internet Explorer as an administrator, I couldn’t download executables from the web.

I decided to try running Outlook as an administrator. This time I tested the picture download setting and the pictures starting downloading! The only problem was the user account on this computer was already an admin. I decided to just go with this workaround.

I went to the Control Panel > User Accounts > Change User Account Control settings. I set this setting to never notify.

I then right-clicked on the Outlook 2013 program shortcut. I then went to the Compatibility tab and clicked the option Run this Program as an Administrator and applied that setting. This allows the program to always run as an administrator without getting a security prompt.

This worked for me, I would warn that this is a workaround and it may make your computer more vulnerable to viruses.

This was posted by techspeeder.


4 thoughts on “Pictures Don’t Display in Outlook 2013 – Cannot Display Linked Images

  1. Rob C.

    This problem just sprung up on me this week, and your solution was the only one that worked….after scouring the web for several hours. Thank you! I wish I would have found this first!

  2. Dazzoid

    This fixed the missing images problem in Outlook it also fixed an issue I was having with Edge in Windows 10 where it wouldn’t clear browsing data.


  3. Les

    I tried this and it didn’t work for me. It seems that after logging back in, the IE settings changed back to 0 and no folder listed. I have tried to allocate the space to the specified folder several times and it just keeps resetting. Did I miss something?


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