Windows 11 made it inordinately difficult to switch default browsers, but Mozilla has seemingly found a way to bypass Microsoft’s ridiculous restrictions to let users set Firefox as the default browser with just one click. While switching browsers has typically been relatively easy in earlier editions of Windows, Microsoft shook things up with Windows 10 by changing the traditional one-click method. With Windows 11, the company went a step further and annoyed a lot of users by making it even more difficult to switch default browsers.
The Chromium-based Microsoft Edge, which replaced the EdgeHTML-based legacy Edge last year, is the default web browser in Windows 11. While it is a decent offering from Microsoft and a million times better than the security nightmare that was the Internet Explorer, many users took issue with the fact that Microsoft has intentionally made it difficult to switch default browsers in the latest installment of Windows.
However, a report from The Verge now suggests Mozilla has found a workaround to let Windows 11 users set Firefox as their default browser with just a single click. According to the report, Mozilla has reverse-engineered the way Microsoft sets Edge as default in Windows 10 to enable users to easily set Firefox as the default in both Windows 10 and 11. The update was originally rolled out last month with Firefox 91 and is also available with version 92. Mozilla has confirmed the report, saying that the decision stems from the company’s belief that people should be able to “simply and easily set defaults” on any operating system.
One-Click Method Works On Windows 10 And 11
As of Monday, September 13th, the one-click method works on both Windows 10 and Windows 11 with Firefox 92. So far, other major browser vendors like Google, Opera, Vivaldi, and others have not incorporated the reverse engineering method to offer their users a one-click solution to switch default browsers in Windows 11. Microsoft, which recently announced that support for Android apps in Windows 11 might be delayed until 2022, has not released any statement about the development or taken any apparent step to block Mozilla’s workaround. However, it will be interesting to see if that will change in any way over the coming days and weeks.
Windows 11 comes with a number of improvements and enhancements over its predecessors, but the new OS has also been heavily criticized by users for removing some elementary features and making it inordinately difficult to execute some basic tasks. One of the most remarkable examples of the latter is the method to switch default browsers, which Microsoft claims is a necessity to protect against browser hijacking attempts.
However, the new method makes it highly complicated to change default browsers in Windows 11 even for technologically savvy users, while for less experienced folks intimidated by the new settings, it is close to impossible. The workaround from Mozilla is definitely a shot in the arm for Firefox users, who can now set their favorite browser as the default with just one simple click in Windows 10 and 11. Chrome, Opera, and Vivaldi users will now be hoping that the same happens with their browsers sooner rather than later.