How to Set Default Apps on Windows 10

Published by | Categories: Computers - Tips & Tricks - Computers - Windows 10

As you know Windows 10 came with its own set of apps like Groove Music, Movie Player and other apps available in the Windows Store.

Let’s say you want to set VLC media player as a default app for a specific set of file formats or the default media player in all your system, well Windows 10 can do this for you!

Before we dig in, I just want to say that there are three ways to set default apps on Windows 10. Either from Settings App or manually by select each app for each file type. There is also advanced settings to change apps according to protocol used by each program.

1st Method. Change Default Apps from Settings App

This method is not the best way to set your default apps in Windows 10 but allows you to change default apps for different specific functions, like: playing videos, email, viewing photos, …

It allows you to change default apps as fast as possible for specific tasks. Open the settings app using the Windows+I key combination.

Click on “Apps“.

Under Apps Settings, select “Default Apps” from the left pane bottom.

A page named “Choose a Default App” will appear.

Here you can browse all the categories for which you can set default apps. Here you will find that some functions still don’t have an assigned default apps. You can set or change default apps by clicking “Choose a default” or the icon of the current default app.

Choose a default app for each category, in the example above I’ve set VLC media player as the default video player on my Windows 10 PC.

2nd Method. Set Default Apps Manually

If you want to set the default app for a specific file type only you can do it the old way.

Here I’m going to change the default program for mp4 file type, to do this I have an mp4 video that I want to change its default media player.

Right-click on your desired file and choose “Open with” > “Choose another app“.

Now choose the app or the program you want to set as default to play the media file.

Don’t forget to check the “Always use this app to open .mp4 files” box at the bottom.

Click “OK“.

Now all files with FLV extension are going to be opened using VLC media player.

3rd Method. Advanced Options

There are also advanced options that you can find below the “Reset” button:

  • Choose default apps by file type
  • Choose default apps by protocol
  • Set defaults by app

Choose Default App by File Type:

This will let you set default apps according to specific file types. This doesn’t require you to have a file type stored on your PC to change its default app.

Choose Default App by Protocol:

You will be able from this page change default apps based on the protocol used.

This option will help you set default apps mostly for internet dependent protocols like Skype for calls.

Sometimes a website has a call URL, if you set Skype as the default option it will open instead of another one. Same thing with torrent or ftp clients.

Set Defaults by App:

You can access this setting from Control Panel, it will let you set default programs for all the file types supported by this program.

Here I have VLC media player with 70 out of 117 defaults. I have to click “Set this program as default” to set VLC to play all supported media files.

Click “OK” afterwards.

I hope this tutorial helped you learn more about the capabilities of changing file types on Windows 10.

Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions, thanks for your support.

The author:

Soufiane is a young computer scientist and specialist in web design, knows a lot of things in the computer world. This enthusiast enjoys helping people innovate and learn more about the IT world...

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