How to Make Windows Mail Your Default Email Program


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When you click on an email address in your browser, you want Windows Mail to come up—but it does not? In your Start menu, you'd love for Windows Mail to be listed as the primary email program—but it is not?

Other than mere convenience, making Windows Mail your default Windows email program can solve a number of mysterious problems. Fortunately, it is a relatively easy thing to do.

Windows Mail is available with Windows Vista, 8, 8.1 and 10.

Make Windows Mail Your Default Windows Email Program

To make sure Windows Mail is your default email program and picks up all requests to send and read mail:

  • Press and hold the Windows and R keys.
  • Type winmail /reg
    • If you get an error message that says 'winmail' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file., try typing (or pasting) "C:\Program Files\Windows Mail\WinMail" /reg (including the double quotation marks).
  • Click OK.
    • Nothing will appear on the screen. Do not be alarmed. Wait for ten seconds or so to make sure the process has finished.
  • Select Control Panel from the Start menu.
  • Go to Programs.
  • Click Set your default programs.
  • Highlight Windows Mail under Programs.
  • Click Set this program as default.
  • Click OK.