Microsoft Windows 10 comes with its own default PDF viewer that runs in Microsoft Edge and works just like Google Chrome.

While internet browser based PDF viewers work fine (most of the time), some of us prefer to use applications like Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat. If you are or prefer using a PDF applications like Adobe Reader, Adobe Acrobat or even Foxit Reader, below is how to set them as the default viewer in Windows 10.

Method 1: Change Default PDF Viewer from Windows 10 Settings

You can also change the default apps in Windows from the settings. Here is how to do it.
1. Click the Start button and select Settings.
2. Click Systems.
3. Select Default Apps from the left side.

Choose your default PDF app

4. Scroll down and look for the .pdf file type.

select from the list what PDF you want to use

5. On the right side of the .pdf file type, you should see Microsoft Edge or any other application set as the default PDF viewer. Click on it and select your preferred PDF application from the list.

Method 2: Set Default PDF Viewer from Control Panel

While the Windows 10 settings page has a setting to set default apps, setting default apps from Control panel seems to work better.

  1. Click the Windows Start Menu or the little magnifier in the bottom left to access the search bar and type Control Panel. Click to open Control Panel.
  2. Click Programs.
  3. Under Default Programs, click Set your default programs.
Set your Default Program

4. The apps will start loading. From the left side, select your PDF application. I am using Adobe Reader Touch so I will select the same.

Choose your PDF viewer

5. From the right side, click Choose Defaults for this program.
6. Notice that in the Current Default section, the selected PDF viewer is set to Microsoft Edge or something else. We will change the current default to your PDF application.
7. Select a .pdf option and click Save.

Adobe PDF Reader

8. Click OK and close the Control Panel.
9. Now try to open any PDF document, and it should open in your selected default PDF viewer.

Method 3: Set Default PDF Viewer Directly from the Application

Most of the apps come with an option that allows the users to set system default apps from its settings. This also works with most of the PDF viewer application. Here is how to set Adobe Acrobat as Default PDF Viewer from the preferences.

1. Launch Adobe Acrobat Reader and go to Edit > Preferences.
2. Select the General tab from the left side.

3. From the right side, scroll down and click Select As Default PDF Handler.
4. Click OK to save the changes.

If you need further help after going through these steps, please get in touch.