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Windows Vista™ Step by Step by Joyce Cox, Joan Lambert

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Specifying the Default Program for a Type of File

Usually you have just one program of a particular type installed on your computer—one word processor, one spreadsheet program, one database program, and so on. In each program, you create files of a specific type, identified by the file name extension. For example, the documents you create and save in Microsoft Office Word 2007 have the .docx extension appended to their file names. By default, these extensions are hidden from your view, and you never have to type them when you assign a name to a file. But they are there nevertheless.

One of the functions of the file name extension is to identify programs that can open the file. If you double-click the file in Windows Explorer and the default program ...

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