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8th February

How to change the default application for al files of a given type in Mac OS X.

written by Mark Wheadon

Under Mac OS X, you can easily open a file using something other than the default application by right clicking on the file (cmd+click) and selecting Open With. So, for example, to open a particular text file with MacVim I can do


And indeed, if I use the Other… option at the bottom of the above menu, I can change the default application for that file. (Although in practice I use an easier way.)

However, that’s only the default application for that one file changed — all other files of the same type will continue to open with the original default application.

To set the default application for all files of that kind (in this example, .txt files), you need to open the Get Info dialogue by right-clicking on the file (or typing alt+cmd I):

get-file-infoopen-with-for-all-filesNow set the application in the file’s info window and click on the Change All… button, confirm by clicking Continue and you’re done. From now on, all files of this kind will be opened with your chosen application.


  1. Oliver

    Thanks! I have been going crazy over opening really ALL files of a type with one program. The Get Info “trick” did it. Thanks for blogging this!

    Cheers from Germany


  2. 14/03/2011

    Perfect. Was going crazy with this.

  3. Gustavo

    Thanks man!!! TextEdit sucks… finally a can use word for everything!

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