Setting Your Browser as Default Email Handler

When you click on an email link in a Web page or email message your computer will open a new ‘compose window’ with the email address in the To: line. The program used to compose messages is determined by the Default Mail Handler for your computer.

Below are directions for the more common browsers:

Google Chrome

Mozilla Firefox


Microsoft Edge


Setting Google Chrome as your default email handler

From Your Chrome Address Bar:

  1. When you first log in to your Williams Google Mail account, you’ll see a double-diamond icon in your address bar
  2. Clicking this icon opens a menu:
  3. Choose Use Williams College Mail and then click Done.

Chrome will now open a new compose window whenever you click on an email link.

From Google Chrome Settings:
If you don’t see the double-diamond icon in your Address bar, you can set the default mail handler in your Google Chrome settings.

  1. From the  menu, choose Settings (or Preferences, depending on your operating system).
  2. At the bottom of the Settings page, click Show advanced settings.
  3. In the Privacy section, click Content settings. A new window opens.
  4. In the Handlers section, click Manage Handlers. The Protocol Handlers window opens.
  5. In the mailto section, choose Williams College Mail from the dropdown list.

Setting Firefox as your default email handler

  1. Click the menu button and choose Options.

  2. Select the Applications panel.
  3. Search for the Content-type: mailto and select it.
  4. Click on the Actions column in the mailto row, to change the action.
  5. Use <Webmail> will open your webmail service’s (e.g. Yahoo! Mail, Gmail) message composition page inside Firefox. For more information about using webmail services, see the Using webmail services section of this article.



Setting Safari as your default email handler

Use these steps to choose which app opens when you click an email link.

  1. Open Mail from the Applications folder, Dock, or Launchpad.
  2. From the Mail menu, choose Preferences.
  3. Click the General button.
  4. Choose your desired default email application from the “Default email reader” pop-up menu.


Setting Microsoft Edge as your default email handler

  1. Open Default Programs by clicking the Start button, and then clicking Default Programs.

  2. Click Set your default programs.

  3. Under Programs, click the e‑mail program you’d like to use, and then click Set this program as default.

  4. Click OK.

  1. Press Windows + X keys, select Control Panel.

  2. Select the Default programs and select set a default.
  3. Select Microsoft Edge and select Choose defaults for this program.
  4. Check select all and click save and check.

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