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Set Default Browser In Windows 8 For Links From 3rd Party/Desktop Apps

If you’ve decided to take Windows 8 for a spin, but aren’t up for using Internet Explorer as your default web browser, then you can download whichever browser you were using in Windows 7, set it as your default browser and all should be right with the world. This isn’t as easy as it sounds, as Internet Explorer will remain the default browser for links opened via external applications. If you receive a new email notification on Gtalk, clicking it will open Gmail in Internet Explorer. Although whichever browser you set as the default browser will appear so in its own settings, the default behavior will be limited to all actions done within the browser. This post looks at how you can set a browser as the default program when opening links from external applications.

For those of you that  are wondering how this all happens, the following screenshot should make it clear how you can have two default browsers. It is apparent that both Firefox and Chrome are set as default.

default browsers Firefox and Chrome

This can happen between any two browsers, as Windows 8 has its own way of selecting which is the default browser. To set either Firefox or Chrome (or any other browser) as the default browser for anything and everything web related, open the control panel and select Programs. Under Default Programs select Set your default programs.

Windows 8 default programs

All programs/apps will be listed in the window that opens. You will see all browsers that you’ve installed, so just select the one you want to make set as default. A brief description of the program will be shown on the right with two options listed below. Select Set this program as default and windows will send all web commands/requests to this browser. You can follow suit for any other program that doesn’t seem to comply with normal default settings made by the program itself.

set default browser windows 8

This seems like an odd quirk but it is there. It might be a security feature or just something to get users to perhaps give Internet Explorer a chance. Either way, you can override this default with little effort.

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