Choosing default applications by file extension is tedious. Any better approaches?


Luke Robinett
 

In the Windows 10 settings dialog to assign default applications by file extension, you are presented with a massive list of file extensions but no convenient way to scroll through them. I’ve tried the arrow keys, page up, page down, home and end but it seems the only mode of navigation is the tab key. Considering this list contains hundreds of entries, this is extremely tedious and impractical. Is there a better way of accessing these file extension settings, perhaps through a third-party app or directly editing the underlying config file, wherever that lives? Thanks.


 

How many extensions are you trying to assign applications to?

You can chose any given instance of a file with the extension you want to assign, open its Properties, General tab, and then look at the Opens with entry.  If you want a different program to open all files with that extension, then activate the Change button and go through the process of picking a different application.  After you've done so all files with that extension will open with that program until and unless you were to go through this process again, or install another program that handles this file and allow it to be set up as the default handler during the install.
--

Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H1, Build 19043  

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

         ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

 


Luke Robinett
 

Great info! As you alluded to, this isn’t something I generally need to do on a frequent basis or to multiple file types at once, so approaching it via the properties of a specific file would be a lot cleaner than trying to navigate that monstrous list. I didn’t realize you could access that setting from file properties. Thank you very much, Brian. 
It still might be worth at least keeping in the back of our minds to come up with an accessible solution for navigating the file extensions list from Windows settings, in case people encounter use cases where that approach makes more sense. The navigation there is currently quite poor, as I outlined previously. This is no fault of NVDA nor any other screen reader, just a poorly thought out design in that area of the settings app. It could be easily mitigated if Microsoft added a search box at the top as is found in most other areas of settings, but such a relatively low traffic part of the OS isn’t likely to get that much attention from them, so perhaps a clever user could come up with some kind of NVDA plug-in to help bridge the gap. There are some other sections and windows with a similarly poor interface, where you are forced to tab between large lists of buttons, so the usefulness of such a plug-in could extend beyond that one screen. Thanks again.


On  Aug 3, 2021, at 5:15 PM, Brian Vogel <britechguy@...> wrote:

How many extensions are you trying to assign applications to?

You can chose any given instance of a file with the extension you want to assign, open its Properties, General tab, and then look at the Opens with entry.  If you want a different program to open all files with that extension, then activate the Change button and go through the process of picking a different application.  After you've done so all files with that extension will open with that program until and unless you were to go through this process again, or install another program that handles this file and allow it to be set up as the default handler during the install.
--

Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H1, Build 19043  

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

         ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

 


 

On Tue, Aug 3, 2021 at 10:25 PM, Luke Robinett wrote:
The navigation there is currently quite poor, as I outlined previously.
-
And as you also noted, it's just a bad design.  I have no idea why there is not a search feature there, as there should be.  That particular area is as hated by the sighted as by anyone who's using a screen reader!
--

Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H1, Build 19043  

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

         ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

 


Sarah k Alawami
 

I access it with open with, then choose the always check box, much much faster.

 

From: nvda@nvda.groups.io <nvda@nvda.groups.io> On Behalf Of Luke Robinett
Sent: Tuesday, August 3, 2021 7:25 PM
To: nvda@nvda.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda] Choosing default applications by file extension is tedious. Any better approaches?

 

Great info! As you alluded to, this isn’t something I generally need to do on a frequent basis or to multiple file types at once, so approaching it via the properties of a specific file would be a lot cleaner than trying to navigate that monstrous list. I didn’t realize you could access that setting from file properties. Thank you very much, Brian. 

It still might be worth at least keeping in the back of our minds to come up with an accessible solution for navigating the file extensions list from Windows settings, in case people encounter use cases where that approach makes more sense. The navigation there is currently quite poor, as I outlined previously. This is no fault of NVDA nor any other screen reader, just a poorly thought out design in that area of the settings app. It could be easily mitigated if Microsoft added a search box at the top as is found in most other areas of settings, but such a relatively low traffic part of the OS isn’t likely to get that much attention from them, so perhaps a clever user could come up with some kind of NVDA plug-in to help bridge the gap. There are some other sections and windows with a similarly poor interface, where you are forced to tab between large lists of buttons, so the usefulness of such a plug-in could extend beyond that one screen. Thanks again.

 



On  Aug 3, 2021, at 5:15 PM, Brian Vogel <britechguy@...> wrote:

How many extensions are you trying to assign applications to?

You can chose any given instance of a file with the extension you want to assign, open its Properties, General tab, and then look at the Opens with entry.  If you want a different program to open all files with that extension, then activate the Change button and go through the process of picking a different application.  After you've done so all files with that extension will open with that program until and unless you were to go through this process again, or install another program that handles this file and allow it to be set up as the default handler during the install.
--

Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H1, Build 19043  

Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.

         ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

 


 

Strange, the arrow keys work for me, and I can also search for a file extension. My problem is that I can't seem to change the app for that extension. When I press space or enter on the choose a default button, nothing seems to happen.


On Tue, Aug 3, 2021 at 7:08 PM Luke Robinett <lukelistservs@...> wrote:
In the Windows 10 settings dialog to assign default applications by file extension, you are presented with a massive list of file extensions but no convenient way to scroll through them. I’ve tried the arrow keys, page up, page down, home and end but it seems the only mode of navigation is the  tab key. Considering this list contains hundreds of entries, this is extremely tedious and impractical. Is there a better way of accessing these file extension settings, perhaps through a third-party app or directly editing the underlying config file, wherever that lives? Thanks.