How to Set Google Chrome Canary As Default Browser in Windows

by Venkat eswarlu on May 11, 2012

in How to,tips and tricks

Google introduced Chrome Canary build two years back which is more of a nightly build gets updates daily. This release can be used along with any other installed Chrome channel such as dev./beta/stable. Chrome Canary will be installed in a separate directory and uses separate profile from other chrome version you’re running. Google doesn’t allows us to set Chrome Canary as default browser, it is highly unstable than dev. and can break often. But all new features will be first tested on Canary and then released to Dev. channel once successful. If you’re an early adopter and use Chrome Canary on daily basis, if you want to set Chrome canary as default browser here is how.

chrome canary settings page thumb How to Set Google Chrome Canary As Default Browser in Windows

Making Chrome Canary as your default browser

1. All you need to do is download a simple registry file “CanaryAsDefault”  from here in zip format and extract its contents to a folder. Right click on “Registry” file and select “Edit” to open in notepad, replace  all occurrences of “YourUsernameHere ” with username given by you to Windows, (for example mine is venkat).

replace yourusernamehere thumb How to Set Google Chrome Canary As Default Browser in Windows

2. Save the changes to the registry file and close it. Now close all browsers if any opened. Run the registry file you just made the changes. You’ll get a warning from the registry editor, click “Yes” button.

registry editor warning thumb How to Set Google Chrome Canary As Default Browser in Windows

3. Restart Windows Explorer or log off Windows and now try to open any other external link in applications like Word it will open in Chrome Canary.

After this change Chrome Canary settings page still shows the message that “this is a secondary installation of Google Chrome and can not be made your default browser” but it has been set as default one with registry hack we implemented successfully.

The registry file we used registers Chrome Canary as default handler for file types such as .html, .htm, .xhtml, .xhtm, and Internet shortcut files. Its working for us.

You can undo changes made to the registry by running uninstall registry file found in the CanaryAsDefault folder extracted earlier.

[Via Techie -buzz and forum]

Update: Dropbox links are not working due to traffic, we’ve uploaded the same file to Mediafire which you can download from below.

Download CanaryDefault Zip file


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Luke Mackenzie July 18, 2012 at 9:55 pm

The link is not working.


Venkat July 18, 2012 at 10:48 pm

Posted another download link, please check the update at the end of article.


Jer September 5, 2012 at 3:11 am

it worked for me BUT did not affect htm and html file types. the README states:

For .html and .htm files, this script will register Google Chrome Canary as a valid handler for that file type, but you will still have to manually set Google Chrome Canary as the default handler.


Alec Rust November 5, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Getting this error at the download link:


Venkat November 5, 2012 at 8:19 pm

Check the link below update.


Leave a Comment

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: