"System cannot find the path specified" error occurs when trying to open file


When trying to open a document the following error message appears:

"The system cannot find the path specified."


The error message described may occur because of several reasons:

  • An external drive was connected to the computer;
  • Windows username was changed;
  • Documents or other default user folder is not available (was removed or redirected);
  • Invalid Registry branches paths.


  1. External drive:
    • Uninstall the program with the external drive connected using standard Windows methods: (Start > Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features);
    • Delete the following folders if they still exist:
      C:\Program Files (x86)\ABBYY FineReader 15
      Please note that Program Data can be hidden.
    • Disconnect the external drive
    • Download the distribution to a local drive. 
    • Launch the installation by double-click onto the downloaded file.
  2. Windows username:
    • Open the Windows Environment Variables (go to Control Panel > System and Security > System > Advanced System Settings, click Environment Variables...,);
    • Check the TEMP and TMP variables values (it should contain your Windows username);
    • Correct the inconsistency between the values or try to change them to C:\Temp.
  3. Documents (or other defaults user folders):
    • Open C:\Users\%username%;
    • Create Documents folder if it doesn't exist.
  4. Registry branches:
    • Press Windows + R on a keyboard, enter Regedit, and launch registry editor as administrator.
    • In the registry editor find the registry branches:
      • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Shell Folders;
      • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders.
    • Make sure that the correct paths for all user folders are displayed in the registry branches.

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