Change default program for Web pages in Windows 7?
I'm a big fan of Google Chrome as a Web browser, but every time I double-click on an HTM or HTML document, it opens up in Microsoft Internet Explorer. Eewww.. How do I fix it and change the default program for this type of file or content, Dave?
You're touching the tip of a big iceberg, actually. Regardless of operating system, somewhere there's a table of file types and what applications can handle or display thoat content. Whether it's a ".MKV" video file, a ".PPT" presentation file or a humble ".HTM" Web page, each type -- and often, each filename suffix -- has an associated program that "owns" that particular kind of content.
Usually it's invisible and you don't much think about it. Double-click on a ".DOC" file and it's opened up in Microsoft Word. Double-click on a ".MOV" and Quicktime launches. No worries.
When things break, or when it's simply the wrong program and you'd prefer another be used, that's when it gets problematic. Some applications are smart enough to check and ascertain that they're not the default app for a file type that they should own (like a video player set up to deal with ".avi" files) and can prompt you to pick them as the default, but other times there's an inherent conflict, as you are seeing with two Web browsers. According to Microsoft, Internet Explorer should be the default for all Web-related content, but you prefer Google Chrome as your browser. So how do you fix it?
Turns out the answer is right there on the Windows 7 START menu:
You can see it right there in the middle: "Default Programs". You've probably long since learned to ignore it. This time, select it...
That's a bit small, but it's the first entry on this list you want to select, "Set your default programs". As you can see, Microsoft's done a good job of making this accessible, once you know where it's located!
The subsequent list shows you all programs on this particular Windows 7 system that are associated with one or more file types:
Click on a particular program -- in this case, I'll click on "Internet Explorer" -- and you'll see more information about the program, along with two very important options:
Click on "Choose defaults for this program" and the entire list of file types that could be associated with the program, and an indication of which actually are mapped to Internet Explorer:
Here you can see that I have ".htm" and ".html" files associated with Google Chrome. On your computer, it'll still have Internet Explorer as the owner of these file types. No worries, uncheck the boxes adjacent to those types, click on "Save", then go back up a level, pick Google Chrome and make sure that they are checked when you look at "Choose defaults for this program".
That's all there is to it. The changes should be immediate. Good luck!
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