How to set a Default Web Browser in Windows

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You can set your favorite browser as your default browser in Windows. Here’s how.

Set The Default Browser from the Browser Itself

Most modern browsers prompt you to set them as your default browser (unless the setting is turned off). Here’s how that looks in Firefox, for example.

If your browser doesn’t notify you, open up settings or preferences in the browser, and you’ll find the option to set it as your default browser.

For Firefox, click the menu button at the upper right of the browser window (the three horizontal lines), and then choose the “Options” command. You’ll see the default browser setting at the top of the page.

For Chrome, hit the menu button in the top right (the three vertical dots), and then choose the “Settings” command. Scroll down a bit, and you’ll see the “Default Browser” section.

For Edge, hit the menu button at the top right (the three horizontal dots), and then choose the “Settings” command. Right at the top, click the “Change My Default” button.

You can also set a default browser directly in the Windows settings. Doing this however depends on whether you’re using Windows 10 or Windows 7.

Setting a Default Browser In Windows 10

In Windows 10, you can set the default browser (and the default for other apps) with the Settings app. Just head to Settings > Apps > Default Apps.

Click the button under the “Web Browser” section. The button is named by whatever browser is currently the default.

The list of all installed browsers appears. Click the one you want to set as your default browser.

The button changes to show the browser selected, and you can now close the Settings window.

From now on, whenever you click your links, your favorite browser will open.

Setting a Default Browser in Windows 7

Setting the default browser is a bit different in Windows 7. Head to Control Panel > Default Programs to get started.

In the Default Programs window, click the “Set your default programs” link.

You’ll see a long list of programs you can configure as default apps for various things. Select the browser you want to set as the default.

The pane on the right changes to show a description of the program. Click the “Set this program as default” link to set it as your default browser.

If you only wanted to set a default browser, you stop at this point. However, if more granular control is what you want, click the second button to see the various defaults you can set for the program.

This window displays a list of extensions that can be associated with the browser. If you had chosen the less complicated “Set this program as default” option, Windows would associate all the listed extensions with that browser, then again on this window you can pick and choose.

Just tick the boxes next to all the extensions and protocols you want to associate with the browser, or click the “Select All” box at the top of the list and then remove the ticks from the extensions you don’t want associated. Click the “Save” button when you’re done.

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