How to Change the Default Browser in OS X 10.10 (Yosemite)

Have a different web browser open links automatically

While Apple's Safari is a well-known favorite among Mac users, macOS's default browser is far from the only game in town.

With popular alternatives like Chrome and Firefox available on the platform, along with others like Maxthon and Opera, it's not uncommon to have several browsers installed on the same system.

Whenever an action is taken that causes the operating system to launch a browser application, like opening a URL shortcut, the default option is automatically called. If you've never changed this setting in the past, then the default is probably still Safari.

Below are instructions on how to change the default browser in macOS so that a different program will open automatically.

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Open System Preferences

Screenshot of the macOS menu
Image © Scott Orgera

Click on the Apple icon, located in the upper left-hand corner of your screen and circled in the example here.

When the drop-down menu appears, select the System Preferences... option.

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Open the General Settings

Screenshot of the macOS System Preferences window
Image © Scott Orgera

Apple's System Preferences should now be displayed, as shown in the example here.

Now choose the General icon.

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Choose a New Default Web Browser

Screenshot of the General settings on macOS
Image © Scott Orgera

Safari's General Preferences should now be displayed. Locate the Default web browser section, accompanied by a drop-down menu.

Click this menu and choose an option from that list to be the macOS default browser.

Once you've chosen a browser, close out of the window with the red "x" in the upper left-hand corner of the window.

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