File Types

Many people have different programs on their PC’s that can open the same type of file. For example, you may have 2 different programs that have the ability to open/view/edit PDF files. Some of you may prefer one or the other, but for some reason, Windows decides to always use the program that you do not prefer to open the file.  This Tech Tip will cover Windows 10 file Associations, and how to change the default programs to associate a particular program with a file type or extension.

A common error we find people encountering is when an icon is blank.  When you see this, the common cause is there is no default fille association set with the file type.

Windows 10 File Associations

Editing a Windows 10 File Associations

  • Find the file that is not opening with the particular program you want (in this instance we’re using a .MOV), but these steps can be used to alter any type of file.
  • Right-click the document, and select Properties
Windows 10 File Association
  • At the top, find Opens With: and select Change
Windows 10 File Association
  • In this example, we don’t want VLC, we want Windows Media Player – double click the program you want to open by default
File Association

For now on, all .MOV files will open with Windows Media Player instead of VLC. Remember, this doesn’t work with just media files, you can follow the same steps to edit any of your Windows 10 file associations.

  • Select OK and you’re finished!

Change the Windows 10 File Associations in Settings Menu

If you want to change a few different file types and check the Windows 10 file associations set on all of your files then the Settings menu is the best place to go.

Step 1: Press the Windows + X keys and click Settings from the resulting menu.

Alternatively, search for Settings in the Windows search bar and click the relevant result.

Step 2: Select Apps from the list of options.

Step 3: Click Default Apps from the left-hand menu.

Step 4: Scroll down if needed, and click Choose Default Apps by File Type.

Windows 10 file associations

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