How to set default desktop mail client in Windows 8.1

Of course, everybody has their own default choice of applications to view or open certain kind of files. For instance, even though I have a lot of applications to choose from, I always use VLC media player to play audio or video files and Microsoft Outlook as my default email program. Talking about default email client, in fact it’s a really a good idea to have your favorite email service as the default email program for superior email productivity. Since you have default email program, there is no doubt that all of your contacts and associated details stored in it. Then it is obvious that you always would like to use same email program to send and receive emails.

Coming to new Windows 8.1 OS, it comes with a new mail app as the default mail program. Since it is set as default windows mail client, it’s going to deal with all mailto URLs (mailto URLs are hyperlinks to default email client so that you get a new email compose box when you click on it). May be you would find it is really annoying when you click on any mailto URL, the entire screen would be navigated to new UI by opening default mail application. Indeed that it would be an annoying behavior, especially if you prefer to use any other mail client for sending emails.

If you want to set your favorite one as default desktop email client, then you have to set up that program as primary application by yourself. For instance, if you install MS Outlook on Windows 8, you may think it would set itself as default email client software. But the truth is office installer does not set MS Outlook as default one and the result is that you may again come across mailto links and clicking on it’ll take you to same previous windows mail app, which is usually never configured or with no contact details.

Here’s how to set it to another default desktop mail client from the Mail app in Windows 8.1, and this procedure is just like you setting up Photos, PDFs, Photos and Videos to open in desktop mode instead on Windows 8 apps. In order to do this procedure, first of all you must make sure that you installed the email program, which is to be set it as default.

Steps to set default email client in Windows 8.1

Step 1: Search for Default Programs from the Windows Start Screen by using the new Windows search feature (press Windows+ W keys to launch settings Search screen), and choose Default Programs from available options. Alternatively, Default Programs can be also accessed directly via Control Panel.


Step 2: When Default Programs window pops up, click and open the link Associate a file type or protocol with a program to open the Set Associations window.


Step 3: Scroll down the program list and find out the MAILTO protocol from the protocol section. When you locate MAILTO protocol, double click on it or use choose program button from window top to set your default choice.


Step 4: When you do that a small window will pop up asking to choose a default application to open mailto links. Choose one from the available options or use Window Store option to find and download suitable email client. Here, I would like to set Outlook as default mail client.


Step 5: Finally, when you back on Set Associations window, check MAILTO protocol and makes sure Current Default is changed as your preference.


That’s all, now you have successfully changed default email program on Windows 8.1 as you prefer.

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