Forum Article

Windows 8.1 How to set and restore file associations.

Technical Level : Basic

Summary

Windows uses a database (register) of all file associations, so that when you click on a docx file that it should open the file with Microsoft Word, or when you click on a mailto://link, that it should open Microsoft Outlook.

There could be reasons why this isn’t working anymore, for example when you click on a mailto:// link Windows Live Mail will open, instead of your newly installed Outlook, of course you can reset this through the program itself, but some applications don’t have this functionality.

This Wiki will help you through the progress of resetting your default file associations using Control Panel.


Details

Reference: Windows 8.1 Default Associations

You can use the lists below to see what Windows uses as default after a new Windows installation


PDF Version: http://yuripustjens.com/publications/defaultassociations.pdf
Web Version: http://yuripustjens.com/?p=227


Step 1: Open Default Programs

  1. Open Control Panel by moving your mouse to the top right corner of your screen and move down, then click on Settings and then click on Control Panel
  2. When control panel is open, click on Programs
  3. Click on Set Default Programs


Step 2: Choose the right application

  1. Now on the left side, click on the application that you wish to restore all defaults too, for example all document types should be opened with Word again.
  2. Then click on Set this program as default

  3. Now all sorts of documents and all document links should be opened by Word again.


I rather wish to manually set files to different applications.

There are two ways of doing this:

Method 1

  1. Just like before, select the application you wish to change on the left side,
  2. Now click on Choose defaults for this program.



  3. You can check the boxes of the files and links you wish to associate with this program.

  4. Click on Save and you’re done

Method 2

  1. Open Control Panel
  2. When control panel is open, click on Programs
  3. Click on Make a file type always open in a specific program
  4. You will now see a gigantic list of all sorts of files and links, for example if we wish to set the Mailto:// to Windows Live mail we select the mailto:// link in the list

  5. Now click on the button “Change program...”
  6. Choose the right program by clicking on it

I hope you have solved your issue using this Wiki, please do leave comments if you wish to add or remove something. Thank you for reading.
Yuri Pustjens.

http://www.yuripustjens.com




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Could you help me reset .msi?

Could you help me reset .msi?


Gooed Morning Cameron,


You can use method 2 listed above to find .MSI in the list, then change the settings to the pictures below:

`

This is your current situation:


Now click on Change Program... and select Windows Installer


If this does not work, then please make a new question on Answers.

Yuri

2014-2016 MVP Windows Experience | windowsinstructed.com

Oops, I didn't realize that this was an 8.1 wiki.


Sorry for the delay in a reply, I lost mine (due to new Microsoft Community bugs) and put off retyping it.


New Thread:


http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-files/how-do-i-fix-msi-file-extension/6bec80ec-b73e-40a2-a9f6-543f1a0fbd68?tm=1391212413608


Hello, could someone help me reset .jar to where no default programs are set to automatically open them?

Hello, could someone help me reset .jar to where no default programs are set to automatically open them?

The best way to do this is to uninstall Java. If you want to do this without uninstalling Java, you're asking for the unsupported.


In Windows 8.1 I have several instances of MS Office installed to support a number of clients, including 2007, 2010, and 2013.  I had installed them in chronological order to ensure that 2013 was the "default" for normal work.  However for some reason the file associations for all the normal Word files are "stuck" on Word 2007.  I have tried changing these associations using the above methods, but Word 2013 does not even appear in the list of apps for Method 1, and with Method 2, although I can select the .doc and .docx files and Browse to the executable for Word 2013, it will NOT change.  And the same occurs if I attempt to change a file association from File Explorer using a right click, Properties method.

Choose the right program by clicking on it

ive tried several times to change all defaults to mail. I've done that thru your different methods, but some outlook defaults I just can't change to mail, it's not on that menu. If I try 'look for another program' it just takes me to the store.

whenever I click "send to, email recipient", I get outlook. Same thing when i try emailing a file from adobe reader or any other program/link on the web.

please heeeelp!!! thanks in advance!


This is all very well but what do I do for the situation where I have a NEW association and a NEW program and neither appears in the file extensions nor programs lists?

Specifically I want .awk to associate to the program gawk.exe.

Thanks!


Nothing works the way suggested in Windows 8.1. I am looking for a means to make Eudora 7.1.0.9, which I have used for years, my default mail program.  Microsoft seems to have the poor habit of being obtuse about using non-MS programs. Eudora is still used by millions!

   Since starting to use Windows 8.1 in January, I have found that my ability to control what I want vs. what MS tolerates differ greatly. There work arounds for many cases, but the inability to add your own choice to the default kist is intolerable.


>Yuri Pustjens.

This is exactly the info I was looking for. I needed to associate .pano files to a panoramic photo viewer.

Searched for "File associations" and this was the #2 article, click, click, and presto, issue resolved.

Thanks for your nice work!

My $0.02 CAN.

Now Faith is the substance for things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1

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Views: 45,655 Last updated: June 17, 2018 Applies to: