Windows 8 Default File Associations - Restore

How to Restore Default File Extension Type Associations in Windows 8 and 8.1


information   Information
This tutorial will allow you to restore the default registry entries and program associations for the file extension type and protocol of your choice in Windows 8Windows RTWindows 8.1, and Windows RT 8.1.

This can be helpful for example when a file extension type opens with the wrong program by default, has the wrong icon, or is missing or corrupted in the registry. Downloading the .reg file for the selected file extension below, will restore that file extension back to default for all of these items above.

Default program associations for file extensions are a per user setting by default, so you will need to be logged on to the effected user account to be able to restore the default associations of the file extension for that specific user account. 

warning   Warning
These default file associations should only be used in Windows 8 and 8.1.

Note   Note
The list of available default file extension and protocol associations below is just a start for now, and is a work in progress. 

I'll constantly be adding more to the list, but if one you need is not listed yet below, then please post a request for it. I'll be happy to get it added to the list.
Here's How:

1. Click/tap on the link of the file extension type or protocol in the table below that you would like to restore the default associations of to download it's .reg file.

2. Save the .reg file to your desktop.

3. Double click/tap on the downloaded .reg file to Merge it.

4. If prompted, click/tap on RunYes (UAC), Yes, and OK to approve the merge.

Tip   Tip

  • If you are signed in as a standard user account, then you will also get a Cannot importtype error. Just click/tap OK for it. This is normal since what cannot be imported can only be done so by an administrator account instead. It will still restore the default associations of the file extension if the standard user used Open with to select the wrong program to open the file with.

  • If the .reg file is not able to Merge, then double check in Default Programs to make sure that the .reg file extension has it's Current Default program set as Registry Editor(C:\Windows\regedit.exe). Afterwards, try merging the .reg file again.

5. Sign out and in, or restart the computer to apply.

6. If you are logged in as a standard user and this still does not help, then have the administrator also merge the needed .reg file for the listed file extension or protocol below while logged into their administrator account.

7. When finished, you can delete the downloaded .reg file if you like.

Default Windows 8 and 8.1 File Associations:

Note   Note
To download all available default file extensions in the table below in one ZIP folder, click on the Download button below and save the ZIP file to your desktop. Open the ZIP file, and extract (drag and drop) to your desktop any .reg file for file extensions you want to use. You can now pick up at step 3 above. 


File Type or Protocol Default Program Description
.3gp Video app Audio and video container format developed by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP); designed as a multimedia format for transmitting audio and video files between 3G cell phones and over the Internet; commonly used by mobile phones that support video capture.
.avi Video app Audio Video Interleave (AVI) files
.bat   Windows batch file
.bmp Photos app Bitmap image files
.cer Crypto Shell Extensions Security Certificate file
.cmd   Windows Command Script
.cpl Windows Control Panel Control Panel item
.crt Crypto Shell Extensions Security Certificate file
.dat   Generic data file created by a specific application; typically accessed only by the application that created the file; may contain data in text or binary format; text-based DAT files can be viewed in a text editor.
.dds   DDS (DirectDraw Surface) image
.der Crypto Shell Extensions Security Certificate file
Directory   Directory protocol associations
.dll   A Dynamic Link Library (dll) file is a support file used by one or more programs. Application extension.
Drive   Drives
.exe   Executable application files
Folder   All folders except library folder
.gif Photos app Graphics Interchange Format (GIF) image files
.htm Internet Explorer HTML (Hypertext Mark-up Language) document files
.html Internet Explorer HTML (Hypertext Mark-up Language) document files
.ico Windows Photo Viewer Icon file
.img   CD or DVD image file
.iso   Disk image file
.jpe Photos app Compressed image format standardized by the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG)
.jpeg Photos app Compressed image format standardized by the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG)
.jpg Photos app Compressed image format standardized by the Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG)
.jnt Windows Journal Windows Journal file
.library-ms   Library folder
.lnk (LNK)   Shortcuts
mailto   URL:mailto
.mp3 Music app MP3 sound format file
.mp4 Video app MPEG-4 movie file
.msi Windows installer Windows Installer Package
.msu Windows Update Standalone installer Windows Update Standalone Package
Open with - > Choose default program   This is for what opens when you right click on a file, click on Open with, and click on Choose default program.
Package   Package protocol
.pdf Reader app Portable Document Format (PDF) File
.png Photos app Portable Network Graphics (PNG) is a bitmap compression method for image files. PNG supports 16.7 million colors, it is lossless and also supports index color, grayscale, true color, transparency, and is streamable. It is thus the best compression method (better than GIF or JPEG) for use on the web.
.scr   Screen saver
.theme Personalization CPL Windows Theme File
.themepack Personalization CPL Windows Theme Pack File
.txt Notepad Text files
.url Internet Explorer Internet website shortcut
.vhd   Virtual Hard Disk image file
.wav Music app Wave audio file
.wmv Video app Windows Media Audio/Video file
.xaml Windows Presentation Foundation Host Windows Markup file
.zip   Compressed folders

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