I should know this, but have been unsuccessfully trying to change file associations on my XP Svc Pk 2 machine with 2 gig AMD processor on an Asus MB.

The problem is simple, I've downloaded and installed the trial version of Paint Shop 9 Pro and it's taken all the graphic associations and switched them to PSP from Photoshop and I want them directed back at PS. I had forgotten some programs do this, and it's been so long since I've had this happen I've obviously forgotten the proper procedure. If someone would line this out for me I'd be most appreciative. I'm obviously not doing something correctly.


12 Years
Discussion Span
Last Post by Catweazle

Try this:

- Open Windows Explorer

- Under the Tools menu, choose Folder Options

- Click on the "File Types" tab.

- In the resulting list of registered file types, hilight each type (jpeg, gif, etc.) for which you want to change the default program association and click the "Change" button. The rest should be self-explanatory.


That was right on, thanks for the input. I was remembering (I thought) that you only had to make a single change for graphics...wrong! Got too close to the forest, and couldn't see the trees.
Thanks again, BuddyB


Most straightforward way to do what you wanted is to reinstall Paintshop ;)

I presume you'd have to install it differently than the first time. What triggers the hijacking of the file types?


Oops. My bad! I meant reinstall Photoshop.

Edit: Always choose 'Advanced' or 'Custom' install for new programs. You will usually get the choice to associate files or not with that form of installation. Otherwise program installs will assume you want the files associated.


Thanks Cat I'll try to remember that in the future :cheesy: .


Greedy programming triggers the hijacking of file associations. Each programmer ASSUMES that his program is the only one of its type you want to use. In the process of installation, and sometimes in the process of starting, the program grabs all of the file types it knows how to use, whnether or not you want it to.

Some programs have a place where you can tell it to not grab certain fiole types, but usually you can get to it only after it has already done the grabbing. The "custom install" option usually lets you decide which types to grab.

Microsift has made the problem worse, by making this setting a system administrator function in networked systems. The user can't set it back after the installed program changes it without pestering the system administrator.

Internet Explorer is the grabbiest program of all. I can't even start it without it grabbing all of the HTM files. And even if you successfully change the association to Netscape, it takes several tries before it lets you successfully change the icon.

The main reason I refuse to use IE is because it is so greedy, changing system settings which I MUST have set differently (for another program which is essential to my job).


Don't agree with the 'greedy' tag, I'm afraid. Might be true for some 'cheap and nasty' programs but it's not true for any reputable software I've come across.

Internet Explorer has a lot of file types associated with it becuase it is integrated with the Windows shell. It's part of the OS and has a right to have file associations. Anybody is free to use alternative software and have that take over associations.

The vast majority of programs 'hijack' associations only when you used the 'dumbed down' automatic default install. choosing the 'Advanced' install option, as I mentioned above, gives you the opportunity to customise the installation.

I'm sorry, but if people choose to use the 'Install for Dummies' then it's a bit rich to complain afterwards!


When you are doing an upgrade (such as SP2), you are often not given the choice - it just does it.


I'm sorry, but if people choose to use the 'Install for Dummies' then it's a bit rich to complain afterwards!

Actually, for me, I wasn't complaining; just wanted my old file associations back. I didn't think of it as "Install for Dummies," just as the most common install features. However, you've given me pause for thought.
Thanks, BuddyB


Yeah, that comment wasn't really directed specifically at you. BuddyB. But you raise a good point.

It's pretty accurate to describe the 'Auto' or 'common features' installation procedure as the 'Install for dummies' not because of the nature of the person performing the installation but because of the intentions of the people constructing the installation. They are the ones making the assumptions about what 'average' and 'necessary' means in the circumstance! They're after two things only:

* minimising the potential for complaints by customers
* maximising the potential for customers to become 'locked in' to their products!

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