How to Stop Edge from Opening PDF Files

Changing default apps on Windows

You can change the default PDF app to stop Edge from opening PDF files. If you want to stop Edge from opening PDF files instead of downloading them, you can do that as well. Let me show you how.

Is Edge Your Default PDF Viewer?

If Microsoft Edge is your default PDF viewer on your Windows computer, you can change it. This will stop Edge from opening any PDF file on your computer.

To change the default PDF viewer on your Windows computer:

  1. Open the Windows menu and search for Default apps.
  2. Under Default apps, select Choose default apps by file type.
  3. Find .pdf in the list and then click the current PDF viewer (which could be Edge in your case) and then select the new PDF viewer in the pop-up.

Make Edge Download PDFs Instead of Opening Them

If Microsoft Edge is opening PDF files from websites instead of downloading them, you can change that behavior. Here is how:

  1. Click the three-dot settings menu in the top-right corner.
  2. Select Settings.
  3. From the left pane, select Cookies and site permissions.
  4. Select PDF Documents.
  5. Enable the Always Download PDF files toggle.

Go ahead and try opening a PDF file now. MS Edge should prompt you to download and open it using the default PDF app.


Defaults are not simply settings we use on our computers. They form the basis of certain behaviors and muscle memory that keep us efficient during the day. Changing them can be upsetting, especially if your computer does that without asking you first.

I hope you found this tutorial useful. Ask your questions in the comments section.

One response to “How to Stop Edge from Opening PDF Files”

  1. Unfortunately this does not work. Everyone has tried this and it will work for a day maybe even two days, but Edge will always come back and steal the pdf extension.

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