setting default programs in Windows

I apologize for the level of computer idiocy of this question, but how do you set default programs for windows?

By this I mean how do I set, for example, a particular program to automatically be used when opening a certain kind of file – perhaps a different program from the one presently the default?



Open Windows Explorer.

Select Tools > Folder Options.

Select the File Types tab.

Highlight the file type and click Change (this is in Windows 2000; I’m sure there is a similar command for other versions).

Alternatively, right-click on a file and from the pop-up menu select Open With. When the program list appears, make sure you’ve checked “Always use this program to open these files”.

Crusoe is correct, but a couple of quick additions:

You have to hold down the Shift key while right-clicking to get Open With to appear in earlier versions of Windows.

You can set the default HTML editor, email program, newsgroup reader, Internet call program, calendar, and contact list on the Programs tab of the Internet Options applet in Control Panel (IE5 or later must be installed). Changing the default browser is a little tricky. To switch from IE you have to open another browser and hit Yes when it asks if you want to make it the default. To change back, check Internet Explorer should check to see whether it is the default browser, then open IE and hit Yes at the prompt.

Service Pack 3 for Windows 2000 adds a Set Program Access and Defaults heading to Add/Remove Programs. It lets you choose the default browser, email program, media player, instant messaging program, and Virtual Machine for Java.