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If you've ever been browsing through files, maybe they're documents, music files, video files, whatever, when you double click a tile that's been pinned to the start screen, for an actual file, or maybe using file explorer, the default program launches, to work with that file. Well, you can change the defaults. Good news is, you can do it all now, from the Windows 8.1 start screen, using Settings. Before we do that though, let's take a look at, what I'm talking about. We'll go to the desktop, and if that's where you have your exercise files folder, double-click it to open it.
You could also follow along with your own files, if you can find a music file, like an mp3 file and just click once, to highlight it. You'll notice here in explore, on the ribbon and if you're not seeing the ribbon, maybe it's hidden. You can expand and collapse this. But here in the open category, you'll see the same little logo, next to open as you do, for the thumbnail itself. This represents the music app for MP3 files and many other types of audio files. The music app is going to open up, but maybe you want to open it with something different.
Well you could go to the drop down and choose Windows Media Player, for example. But maybe you want that to be the default. So that's what we're going to talk about, in this movie. Let's go back to the Start screen now and here's what I'd like to do. I want to set up default programs, so I'm going to start typing default. D e f and all of a sudden, you're going to see things like, Default Programs. Now this will take us to that old desktop environment, and we'll do things the old fashioned way here. If that's what you prefer, you can still do that. But notice down below, we can also choose a default app, for each type of file.
Let's click that. That takes us into our Default Apps, by file type. So as you can see, we can associate file types with specific apps. As I scroll down this list and I see different audio formats for example, many of them do use the Windows Media Player. Others though, as you can see, use the Music App, like the AAC files. And if I scroll way down this alphabetical list, I'll get into the MP3 files, that's what I'm looking for.
There it is, MP3. If I click the Music app, I can now choose something different. Something that I already have, like Windows Media Player, I could even look for a different app, in the store. I'm going to use Windows Media Player, select it here, and now some, of the audio formats will be using the music app, Mp3 files should now be opened up by default, in the Windows Media Player, so let's press our windows key, click the desktop, we're still looking at our exercise files here, and notice now, that the thumbnail has changed for our Mp3 file.
Also, the open button has defaulted to Windows Media Player. And we would have to click the drop down, to choose something different like music. Let's close this up. We'll go back to our start screen and type in, default again. And I just want you to see, we can choose default apps for each type of file, but also for protocols. We also have something called default app settings, let's click that, this is a little bit different. Now you're looking at search and apps, so it's a shortcut to defaults.
And you can see, we set up the defaults for the apps themselves, as opposed to the file types. So, if we click music, notice we can choose something different for all of our music files. We can choose Windows Media Player and now, every single music file would use that app or program, as opposed to the music app. We could also click Choose a Default down below. You can see when we click to deselect that and scroll down, some of them can be chosen like Calendar, for example. We could also go back to choosing default apps by file type or protocol, directly from here as well.
Let's press the Windows key once more, to get back to the start screen, and take a look at the old fashioned way, because there are some useful options there as well. Again, we can start to type default and this time, we'll click, Default Programs, which does take us to that old environment, where we can set our default programs. We could also associate files by types. When we click that link, notice this is exactly what we saw, in our settings from the start screen, there's our different extensions for file types. And you can see, we can change the program for anything that's selected.
Let's use the back button though, to go back, and go to set your default programs here. Again, we're setting up programs for file types, but in this case we select the program, not the file type, so go to music. And you can see here, we can set this program as a default for all music files. And it's going to change it back, so we won't be using the windows media player, for mp3 files any longer. When we click okay, we can test that out, by closing up our default programs window.
Going back to our exercise files and it should be changed back, to the music app and sure enough, that's what it is. So we did all music files at once and in this case, we saved a little bit of time, by not having to go to each file type and choosing the music app. So it's all there for you, most of it can be done directly from the start screen, via settings. But if you like to do things the old-fashioned way, you can still go back to your desktop, and do it that way.
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