I prefer file downloads over running downloads automatically on the system once they complete on it.
That's true for most file types but not for all. For instance, I prefer that torrent files get downloaded directly in a BitTorrent application as that's where I'd load them in anyway.
You too may have certain file types that you want opened directly. Maybe PDF files, Usenet NZB files, or even videos that you download from the Internet.
As a Firefox user, I'm spoiled by the options the web browser offers in this regard as you can set default actions for known file types easily on the Applications Settings page which you can open directly from this link about:preferences#applications.
Google Chrome on the other hand does not have that option, and the process is slightly more complex and less manageable than Firefox's.
So how does it work then?
It starts with a download. Download the file type that you want opened automatically in the Chrome browser. You should see it displayed in the downloads bar at the bottom of the page.
When it completes, click on the small arrow icon next to it and select the "always open files of this type" option. This marks the file type so that it is run automatically whenever files matching it are downloaded to the local system.
That's all there is to it. All future files that you download that match the file extension will be run automatically on the system.
Chrome will always load them in the default application set for the file type on the system with no option to change it to a different program.
The process needs to be repeated for other file types that you want executed automatically instead of being just downloaded.
You are probably wondering how you control the feature. There are two options for that. First, you can uncheck the option if the file type is still displayed in the download bar in Chrome.
Since future files won't be listed there anymore once you have made the change, you are left with the following option:
All custom run instructions have been reset so that all files will be downloaded once again in the browser.
Now You: Do you download files or set your browser to run files automatically?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.