From documents, resumes to books, PDF is a pretty standard file format. Mac’s default PDF viewer is Preview. But you can easily change the default PDF viewer on Mac in just a few clicks.

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Preview is great for viewing PDFs and basic annotating. However, it lacks a few features. To modify the text or to fill forms, you will need a sophisticated PDF editor app, and making them the default PDF viewer will save both time and energy.

How to Set the Default PDF Viewer in macOS Catalina

Changing default apps for specific file types. One upgrade you might consider right away is to change the default PDF viewer on Mac to something like PDFpen, or another advanced PDF reader. PDFs are one of the most common files types encountered daily. Used in contracts, university reading packages, or fillable forms, PDFs are popular for a good reason: any computer can open and read a PDF, and the format holds its layout. No matter what programs were used to create it, a PDF will generally. 1) Right-click or hold Control and click the file. 2) Select Get Info. 3) Go down to Open with, click the drop-down box, and pick your application. If you don’t see it, click Other. 4) Back in the Get Info window, click the button for Change All. 5) You’ll see a pop-up message letting you. Whenever you double click on any file on your Mac within the Finder, the operating system will by default find the most suitable app to open it and reveal its contents.Most of the time everything. Change Your Mac Default Apps: Mail 1. Open Mail.app from your Applications folder. In the menu bar, choose Mail Preferences or press Command +, as a shortcut. Pick your preferred email application from the drop-down menu next to “Default email reader” at the top of the window.

If you have downloaded an alternative PDF viewer on your Mac, the app might have prompted you to become the default application. So, before we move on, let’s first check what is a default PDF reader on your Mac.

Check the Default PDF Viewer on Mac

Step #1. Lookup a PDF file on your Mac and right-click or tap it with two fingers.

Step #2. Hover the cursor on Open With and observe the dialogue box that appears.

The first option in the listing will have (default) written behind the app. This signifies that the app is currently the default PDF viewer on your Mac.

Now that we have discovered it, let’s get down to switching the default PDF viewer.

To Change Default PDF Viewer on Mac

Step #1. Tap the PDF file with two fingers or right-click to invoke the contextual menu.

Step #2. Move the cursor to Get Info and click.

Step #3. In the pop-up window, look for the “Open With:” menu. If the tab is closed, expand it by clicking on the small grey arrow beside it.

Step #4. Here, click on the drop-down menu and select the application you prefer.

Step #5. Once selected, click on Change All… button to make it default.

Step #6. Click Continue to confirm.

And now, when you check the default PDF viewer on Mac, it will have the app you set.

That’s All

Do note that this method does not just apply to PDF files. This indeed is the way to change the default app of any kind of file. So, go ahead, mix, match, and play!

And as far as file formats go, PDF is amongst the most popular and secure document formats out there. And thankfully Mac carries a variety of features to accommodate the format, such as:-

A self-professed Geek who loves to explore all things Apple. I thoroughly enjoy discovering new hacks, troubleshooting issues, and finding and reviewing the best products and apps currently available. My expertise also includes curating opinionated and honest editorials. If not this, you might find me surfing the web or listening to audiobooks.

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Whenever you double click on any file on your Mac within the Finder, the operating system will by default find the most suitable app to open it and reveal its contents. Most of the time everything will work without issues, but there are other times when your Mac will either not use the ideal app to open a file or will simply not be able to find a suitable app at all.

If you have experienced this issue before and would like to know how to solve it, read along. What causes this issue most of the time is that you might have two or more apps that support the type of file that you want to open.

For Example: Some very frequent culprits of this are archiving apps like Winrar or UnRarX, both of which support very similar file types. Another common occurrence is mix-ups between video players like VLC and Quicktime, with the latter opening files only supported by the former.

What you need to do in order to solve this issue is to change the default app for opening certain types of files, or at least choose a different app from the available ones to open a particular file. Follow these steps to learn how to do just that.

Open File with Different Program

Step 1: First, start by locating the file you want to open within the Finder.

Step 2: If you want to open the file with a different app than the one set by default only once, then all you have to do is right-click on the file, click on the Open With option and then select the app you want to use from the list of available programs.

Set Default Program for Specific File Types

Step 1: To set a different default app for all files of a certain type, you can also start by locating a file of that type first and then by right-clicking on it. This time though, locate the Get Info option and click on it.

Change default pdf app mac

Step 2: This will display the information panel for that particular file. On it, look for the Open with: section located almost at the bottom of the window. If it is not open, click on the small triangle until the information is displayed just like on the screenshot below.

Step 3: There, you will see a dropdown menu that will display all of the apps that support the file and are capable of opening it. Click on this menu and then select the application that you want to use to open that file type from then on.

Change Default App Macbook

If you don’t find the app you are looking for on the list, simply click on Other… to look for one within the Applications folder.

Step 4: Once you select the application you want, click on the Change All… button to apply the changes. Then, confirm your selection on the next window.

Once you are done, just close the information panel and you will be set to go. From now on, every time you open any file of that type, it will open in the new application you selected.


Default mail app macThe above article may contain affiliate links which help support Guiding Tech. However, it does not affect our editorial integrity. The content remains unbiased and authentic.Also See#applications #How-to/Guides

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