Change Default Web Browser (Edge) in Windows 10 to Internet Explorer
When you upgrade to Windows 10, and if you agreed to use the "recommended defaults" setting during the installation, Windows 10 will automatically change many of the default programs associated with certain file types. In this case, Microsoft Edge became your default web browser by using the recommended defaults.
The good news is that you can easily change the default browser in Windows 10 with a few mouse clicks, though the way this is done is a little different than how it was managed in Windows 7. If you are having troubles setting IE11 as the default, there is a potential fix for that mentioned further down.
Option #1: Change your Default Web Browser using the Settings App
This is the most common method used for changing your default browser and should work in most cases. If it does not, try Option #2 or #3 below.
- Click Start and type in "default browser" (no quotes).
- Click the link that says "Choose a default web browser" when it appears in the list of your Start menu.
- The Settings window will appear; click the "Default apps" heading on the left (it should already be highlighted).
- On the right of the screen, look for the heading "Web browser" and click the icon.
- A new window will appear with the title "Choose an app". Select Internet Explorer 11 or whichever browser you wish to use as your default.
That should do it.
Option #2: Reset Browser Registry Entries by Reinstalling Your Browser
If your web browser won't set as default using Option #1, you can try reinstalling the browser to reset and fix some Windows registry entries that may have been corrupted. Use this method if Option #1 doesn't work for you, but skip this section if you are trying to reinstall Internet Explorer 11 (use Option #3 instead).
- Download the browser you want to use from the Internet. For example, if you want to use Firefox, go to Mozilla.org and download the Firefox installer.
- Run the browser setup / install program once the download completes.
- As the browser reinstalls, it should reset browser settings in the Windows Registry and allow you to set the browser as default properly.
- After the browser is reinstalled, follow the steps outlined in Option #1 again.
Option #3: How to Reinstall (Fix) Internet Explorer 11 Registry Settings
You cannot re-download and reinstall Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10 using an executable file because Microsoft won't allow it - I've tried and am met with a message that says "Internet Explorer 11 for Windows 7 is not compatible with your system."
How to Run Internet Explorer 11 from the Start Menu
By default Internet Explorer 11 is hidden from the Start menu. You can access is by clicking on Start, then type in "Internet Explorer" (no quotes); once it appears in the list, you can right click it and select "Pin to Start" or "Pin to Taskbar".