How to Choose the Windows 10 Default Application for Opening Files

By Peter Weverka

Part of Windows 10 For Seniors For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Some types of files can be opened with more than one application. For example, if your computer is anywhere near typical, two or three different applications on your computer can open graphics files. Sometimes when you open a file, it opens in the wrong application. Windows 10 opens files with the default application — the one that Windows 10 thinks you prefer. But what if the default application isn’t your first choice for opening files of a certain type?

Follow these steps to tell Windows 10 which application to use to open files of a certain type:

  1. Select the Windows button and choose Settings on the pop-up menu.

    The Windows Settings screen opens.
  2. Select Apps to open the Apps & Features window.
  3. Select Default Apps on the left side of the window.
  4. Scroll down and select the Choose Default Apps by File Type link.

    The Associate File Types with Specific Apps window opens. This window lists the file extensions by which different file types are known.

  5. In the Name column, scroll to and select the file type you are concerned with.
    For example, if you want to change the application with which Windows 10 opens JPEG files, scroll to and select the JPEG file extension.

  6. In the Default App column, select Choose a Default (if no default application has been chosen yet) or the name of the default application (if a default application has been chosen).

    The Choose an App window opens. It lists applications on your computer that can open files of the type you selected.

  7. Select your first-choice application for opening files of this type.