How to change the default browser in Windows 11

While the revised user interface in Windows 11 is eliciting a mixed response, the removal of a large number of features infuriates many Windows users. First, we found out that the Refresh button is missing and hidden within the context menu in Windows 11. And now, even a basic task, like setting the default application, has also become more confusing than ever. So if you’re wondering how you can set the default browser in Windows 11, we’ve got you covered. Follow this step-by-step guide to change your default browser in Windows 11.

Change the default browser in Windows 11.

Windows 11 may have brought with it some cool new features, but it has also made a lot of unnecessarily complicated things for reasons better known to Microsoft. The ability to configure a default application seems to be one of those areas that is now much more complicated than ever in previous versions of the operating system. But fear not, check out this tutorial to learn how to change the default browser in Windows 11.

Note : This tutorial is intended for the official preview version of Windows 11 that was released in June 2021 via the Insider channel. The methods described here may or may not be valid for the final RC / RTM versions of the operating system.

Install a third-party web browser of your choice

Microsoft Edge is the default web browser on Windows 11. The first step in changing that would be to install a browser of your choice. There are a host of high-quality third-party browsers available on Windows, including Chrome (free), Firefox (free), Opera (free), and many more.

Any browser that is compatible with Windows 10 is also compatible with Windows 11. So please install the web browser of your choice and follow the guide below to change the default browser in Windows 11.

Note : We are using Google Chrome for demo purposes here. The process will remain the same for Firefox, Opera or any other browser. If you don’t like Google Chrome due to all the privacy implications, check out the best Chrome alternatives you can use on Windows.

Steps to configure the default browser in Windows 11

  • First of all, open Settings (use Windows keyboard shortcut Win + I) and go to the ” Applications” tab on the left panel. Then, click on ” Default Applications ” from the right pane.

Note : You can also click the “ Make Default ” button within the Chrome (or Firefox) settings to directly access the default apps page in Windows 11.

  • Now, in the ” Search Applications” field, enter the name of the application that is currently the default browser on your Windows 11 PC. In my case, it is Mozilla Firefox, but if you are not sure, it is probably Microsoft Edge .

Note : The default browser in Windows 11 is Edge Chromium, so you should search for Microsoft Edge here if you have the clean operating system installed. If you have upgraded from an existing installation of Windows 10, your default settings have carried over, so you need to find your default browser app in Windows 10.

  • You will now be presented with a list of file types and extensions, including .html, .svg, .pdf, .php, and more, for which Firefox is the default application. Click the extensions one at a time and use the pop-up menu to change the default browser to the one you want to use in Windows 11.
  • Once you change the default browser for all extensions, restart your Windows 11 PC. Chrome will now be the default app to open all those extensions and file types, making it the default web browser on your Windows 11 installation.

Note : In my experience, the process of changing the default browser in Windows 11 is not only unnecessarily time consuming but also buggy. You must try the same steps multiple times for the change to work as expected. That’s especially true when you’re trying to revert your changes and go back to your original settings.

Change default browser from Microsoft Edge to Google Chrome in Windows 11

The lack of a one-click option to set a default browser in Windows 11 is annoying. We expect Microsoft to rectify that in the final RTM version of the operating system, which will be released later this year. You can check when your PC will get the Windows 11 update right here. With that said, you now know how to change the default browser in Windows 11. Although the process is tedious, hopefully you can use the browser of your choice rather than being forced to use Microsoft’s default option.

If you’re looking to undo some of the other Windows 11 changes that no one requested, check out how you can go back to a Windows 10-style start menu layout. If even that doesn’t impress you, learn how to switch to Windows 10 from Windows 11. On the other hand, if you are perfectly satisfied with Microsoft Edge and want to keep using it, check out how to enable efficiency mode in Microsoft Edge to improve battery life.


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