Recently, my workplace moved to Google services based environment, and that includes adapting Chrome as our default browser rather than IE. When using Gmail, I am trying to download a file I received as an attachment to a location on my hard drive (and NOT to the Downloads folder). I only see the option to download to that folder or to my Google Drive. When trying Save As... from the context menu, the browser saves the whole HTML page and not just the attachment.

How can I tell Chrome to save the attachment in a desired location?

  • Usually I just let it go to the downloads folder (because that's where I want it anyway ~90% of the time) then drag and drop it from the downloads bar if it turns out I want it somewhere else. – Ajedi32 Mar 10 '16 at 14:51
  • Unfortunately this is a persistent problem, that will come back to haunt you even after you have rectified the problem. – Derelict Oct 7 '20 at 12:56

This option is actually within the Chrome settings.

  • Click the options button (3 lines)
  • Select Settings
  • Click Advanced Settings
  • Scroll to the section called Downloads

You can change the location here by ticking the box.

Chrome downloads location


It appears that the Chrome settings allow you to open an "Advanced" mode settings page. There, there is a section for handling downloads and where you can check the box telling it to ask the user before every download.


This Settings\Advanced Settings\Downloads\DownloadsLocation option appears to work for every attached file except a PDF (at least on the Mac version of Chrome that I use). When an attachment is a PDF, no pop-up window asking where to save appears as it does for Word, Excel & various image files....it just automatically downloads.

To save a PDF without downloading first, after changing the download location setting, right click on the PDF attachment icon in the email, click "Open Link in New Window," and then once the PDF is open in the new browser window, clicking the download icon will trigger the pop-up, giving you the option to "Save As."

  • Same on Windows 10, haven't tried yet with Linux – Halberdier Jun 9 '20 at 15:04

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