When I click on a .docx attachment, Chrome just downloads it. I want it to launch Microsoft Word to open it. How do I change this?

  • 1
    You mean like magnet link? I'm not an expert, but I think there should be a protocol handler on both the browser and desktop application. I don't think MS Word can be configured to do that, at least for now. It will be cool to have docx: handler, I think.
    – Vylix
    May 7, 2017 at 8:21
  • msword has it's own handler ms-word:
    – Ariwibawa
    Jul 27, 2021 at 1:46

3 Answers 3


It is possible and not difficult too. First, download one .docx file. Then, from the download bar at the bottom, click on the chevron to right of the name of the downloaded .docx file. From the context menu that appears, select "Always open files of this type".

"Always open files of this type" in the context menu

You can undo this anytime using the Settings page.

Where to look in "Settings" page for undoing auto-open actions


You can add the chrome official extension to do that (otherwise chrome will just download the file):


  • 1
    This is for opening docx with google doc not opening to msword.
    – Ariwibawa
    Jul 26, 2021 at 11:07
  • @Ariwibawa Yes, I meant that you can open .docx documents, and is very hand because if you just want to read the documents (as is my case) you can just install and use this extension. When you click to open a docx document in a link, it will already open the document directly in the browser, instead of having to download and then going to the directory to open it, making it very practical. It's also free. That said, if you need to edit the document to share among other people that uses msword, or need some specific feature of msword, then this extension might not be the solution to your case. Jul 26, 2021 at 12:22

Find any docx file in windows explorer. Right click and select properties. Select opens with Select the word processor that you want to use. This will change the properties for all docx files on your system.

  • 4
    The question is asking how to change what Chrome does, not what Windows does.
    – Blackwood
    Sep 5, 2018 at 23:44

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