Contributing Editor Scott Spanbauer offers incisive tips, tricks, and commentary on a broad range of online issues.
From the February 2005 issue of PC World magazine
Posted Wednesday, December 22, 2004
Complete article and steps for changes
'We Have Now Returned Control of Your Browser'
As a kid in the 1960s, I remember many happy hours spent huddled in front of a big black-and-white TV set on cold winter afternoons, watching reruns of The Outer Limits. "We will control the horizontal; we will control the vertical," intoned the ominous voice-over during the opening credits. The effect was thrilling, and creepy.
Is it just me, or does using a Web browser--or even installing a different Web browser--sometimes feel just as creepy as watching that old TV show, as if powers from somewhere in the outer limits of the Internet were controlling your PC? Well, it doesn't have to be that way. Whether you use Internet Explorer, Firefox, Mozilla, Opera, or a combination of the four, you can remain firmly in charge of determining which browser Windows opens by default, and you can switch quickly to a different one as your needs dictate. (For more about browser alternatives, see last October's News and Trends story "Is It Time to Ditch IE?")
Choose Your Default
Windows comes with Internet Explorer set as the default Web browser. (No surprise there.) Whenever you click a hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) link, whether it's in a document, an e-mail message, or an instant message, Windows uses IE by default to load and display the linked Web page.
For security or for any number of other reasons, you may decide to install a different browser and make it the default. Depending on your system's configuration, however, installing a new browser may not automatically set it as the default. You can change your default browser in Windows XP (with Service Pack 2) to the latest version--as we went to press--of any of the leading alternative browsers by following these steps....
Edited by KoanYorel, 07 January 2005 - 03:48 AM.