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Windows 7's file association controls have been "simplified" and now I appear to be unable to change the default association of a file (in my case a Python script) to a different executable.

If I right click the script and go to "Open with...", "Choose default program", then "Browse..." and pick the desired interpreter (e.g. C:\Python27\python.exe), it reverts to another--the first--python.exe already in the "Recommended Programs" which is a 2.4 interpreter. There's a second python.exe in there as well, 2.6, but if I explicitly select that program with browse, it still reverts to the first Python in the list.

How do I get back the power of XP?

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5 Answers 5

up vote 4 down vote accepted

You can try free Default Programs Editor. I have a good experience with it.

enter image description here

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Excellent application –  Factor Mystic Feb 5 '12 at 21:03

Its a workaround, but change the name of the 2.4 python.exe, then try to run a .py. It should though a file not found error. Then browse to the correct file. Feel free to rename the original 2.4 python.exe back to its former name.

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You could always make the change in the registry under:


But I would highly recommend the program Types from Sourceforge for control over all parts of the association process.

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I would use Creative Elements Power Tools, specifically the "File Type Doctor".

http://www.creativelement.com/powertools/#download (to download)

http://forums.techarena.in/tips-tweaks/989159.htm (for a screenshot)

This has the advantage of looking almost exactly like the XP file association area, so you would be familiar with it.

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I am not sure about how this will interact with your python.exe program, but it does give you back the power of XP, as you asked. –  KCotreau Jul 14 '11 at 2:47

Are you sure you are enabling the "Always use the selected program to open this kind of file" check box to the left of the browse button?

enter image description here

This problem shouldn't happen, otherwise. And I can't remember ever witnessing anything similar.

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Yes, it is checked, and I don't even have to click "OK" to dismiss the program selection window and it "reverts", highlighting the 2.4 python.exe –  Nick T Jul 14 '11 at 2:49
Thanks for having replied, Nick. This behavior definitely qualifies as a Windows bug. I'll report it, next opportunity. –  A Dwarf Jul 14 '11 at 3:09

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