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  1. #1
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    I want a specific program to open a file with a particular extension by default. That is, when I double-click on the file "foo.bar", I want a program I specify to open it (and any file with the extension of .bar). This was straightforward to accomplish in Windows XP, but I have yet to figure out how to do this in Windows 7.

    If I right-click a file displayed in a folder, and click Open with… a dialog listing several applications is displayed. Below there is a Browse… button, and I can use that to navigate to the application I want to have open the file (which is not displayed in the default list). But when I select it, I am returned to the list, and nothing has changed: my selected application is not displayed.

    So it seems there is no way to specify a custom program to open a specific file extension, as you can with Windows XP.

    Any thoughts on this?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robert OHara View Post
    I want a specific program to open a file with a particular extension by default. That is, when I double-click on the file "foo.bar", I want a program I specify to open it (and any file with the extension of .bar). This was straightforward to accomplish in Windows XP, but I have yet to figure out how to do this in Windows 7.

    If I right-click a file displayed in a folder, and click Open with… a dialog listing several applications is displayed. Below there is a Browse… button, and I can use that to navigate to the application I want to have open the file (which is not displayed in the default list). But when I select it, I am returned to the list, and nothing has changed: my selected application is not displayed.

    So it seems there is no way to specify a custom program to open a specific file extension, as you can with Windows XP.

    Any thoughts on this?

    Have you tried using the Default Programs option in Control Panel?
    This article describes the How to for Vista, and it's the same for Win7. You may need to be signed on as an administrator

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Welcome to the Lounge, Robert!

    "Associate a file type or protocol with a program" is the second option shown on "Default Programs". This corresponds to the one you were accustomed to using in XP.

    When you select it, select the file type you want to assign, and click the "Change program" button on the "Set Associations" screen. The "Open with" dialog box that appears will show you a section called "Recommended Programs" and a section called "Other Programs". The Recommended Programs are programs that have been registered as capable to open a file with the chosen extension.

    The Other Programs (you will need to click the little caret arrow (^) on the right side of the dialog box to reveal them), are common apps installed on your system, none of which are worth considering. If you were to select one of the Other Programs to associate the chosen extension, that program will always show up in the Recommended Programs section for that file extension.

    Hope this helps.
    Deadeye81

    "We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give." Sir Winston Churchill

  4. #4
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    Also when you right click and use open with, there should be a box near the bottom of the pane, where a check mark can be added to always used the selected program, just like it is in XP.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  5. #5
    5 Star Lounger
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    Look at the Open With Dialog. There are two blue-lined entries: Recommended Programs and Other Programs. The Recommended programs is expanded by default while the Other Programs is collapsed. Expand the Other Programs section (click the little down arrow to the far right) and you should see the app that you added. This confused me too the first time I encountered it.

  6. #6
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    Gentlemen, thanks for your responses. But I am still stuck.

    When I get to the "Open with" dialog, it lists recommended programs, and then at the bottom there is a "Browse..." button. I click it, and then navigate to the program I want to use to open this particular file. I click OK in that dialog, and then am returned to the "Open with" dialog. But my program is not displayed in the "Other Programs" list, so there is no way to select it.

    The same thing happens when I select "Open with" from right clicking on a file, or in "Set Associations" in the Control Panel.

    This is where I am stuck.

    Thanks!

  7. #7
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    Is the wanted program installed on this machine?
    If not that is what needs to be done.

    If it is, then use the browse button in the above pane, and go to the folder that this program is in and find the EXE file that is use to start the program.

    Now running HP Pavilion a6528p, with Win7 64 Bit OS.

  8. #8
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    Yes, the program I want is on my machine. It is an older Windows program (KEDIT, a text editor), and it does not have any formal installation procedure. It simply sits in a folder that is on my path. Here is what I have tried, this time with pictures!

    1. Go to "Control Panel / Programs / Default Programs / Set Associations", and select the .bak extension.
    2. Now we are in the "Open with" dialog. See attachment "Save As 1". I click the "Browse..." button.
    3. Now I navigate to the KEDIT executable file and select it. See attachment "Save As 1". I click the "Open" button.
    4. We are back at the "Open with" dialog. I click on the little down arrow to display all the "Other Programs". See attachment "Save As 3". Note that KEDIT is not listed, so I cannot choose it to open this file.

    This is where I am stuck. I find the list of other programs somewhat random, don't know where it is coming from. Also I note that Windows Photo Viewer has the wrong icon displayed.

    Is there a registry setting I can configure that will list KEDIT as a valid application?

    Thanks, Bob O'Hara
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #9
    New Lounger
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    I have much the same issue. I want to associate .indd with InDesign.exe. I select it from the Browse function, but then it still does not appear as a program option to be selected.

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