Make Cortana Use Your Default Browser Instead of Edge in Windows 10


When you do a Cortana web search in Windows 10, the results open in Microsoft Edge. Here’s a look at how to make it open in a different default browser.

Whether you use the Hey Cortana feature or manually type in a search inquiry, it defaults to Microsoft Edge and Bing. If you’ve set your default browser to Chrome or something else, here’s a look at how to make Cortana use it.

We previously covered how to make Cortana search Google instead of Bing using the Chrometana extension. With the help of a light Open Source app called EdgeDeflector, you can redirect Cortana to use your default browser instead of Edge.

Assuming you don’t want to use Edge as the default web browser in Windows 10, the first thing to do is change it to something else like Chrome or Firefox. You can do that by heading to Settings > System > Default apps. For more on that read our article on how to change the default browser in Windows 10.

Windows 10 Default Apps

Make Cortana Use Your Default Browser

  1. Download EdgeDeflector to your local drive and run it once. It’s very lightweight and you won’t get an install wizard, just a see the hourglass icon display for a second.

File Explorer

  1. Now when you use Cortana for your next web search, you’ll get a dialog box asking how you want to open the results. Select EdgeDeflector and make sure the box is checked to use always use it.


  1. There you go! The search results will open up in whatever you have set as your default browser. In my case, it’s Google Chrome.

As the EdgeDeflector developer notes, you might need to take a couple of extra steps to get this to work. I installed this on a laptop running Windows 10 Creators Update and it worked without a hitch.

However, when I installed it on my main desktop production machine running Windows 10 Anniversary Update (Version 1607) I had to restart it for it to work. So, just keep in mind your mileage may vary.

Do you use Microsoft Edge as the default browser in Windows 10 or have you set something else as the default? Leave a comment below and let us know.



  1. Richard

    February 20, 2017 at 6:45 am

    Don’t use Edge as RoboForm, for passwords, does not work. Also, I find the MSN Homepage to be more informative and is easier to read.

  2. Tony

    February 20, 2017 at 9:57 am

    Hi Brian,
    nice article, but form doesn’t work with me (Win10 + browser Chrome).
    Donwloaded to C:\Program Files and started with administrator privileges…
    Restarted several times without success.
    What to do to get rid of Bing in Cortana?
    Thanks a lot

  3. Andrew Robinson

    February 21, 2017 at 6:38 am

    I don’t necessarily dislike Edge; it’s just that when I bought my laptop w/Windows 10 Home, I got a message from my Norton Security Suite that Edge didn’t support their extensions. I went back to IE 11, and have been very happy wih that. I need virus protection more than I need the new features in Edge. Don’t know if that’s still true, maybe I need to check again.

  4. Alan Hwang

    February 23, 2017 at 12:26 am

    I can not do a search on Edge since I updated the windows 10 anniversary update. My Edge browser says 
    “Hmm, we can’t reach this page.
    Try this
    Make sure you’ve got the right web address:
    Refresh the page
    Search for what you want.”

    However, my Firefox has no problem at all.

  5. Vdmeulenz

    February 23, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Why do you change default browser???!
    Come’ on! Give Edge is CHANGE!

    Everybody thinks edge is ie its not!

  6. John

    February 26, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    Edge is a perfectly fine browser, Or you can put up with all that comes with Chrome and Google’s privacy issues. Firefox is pretty good but falling behind, maybe 2017 we will see some really good Firefox improvements. IE is actually pretty decent yet, for much of today’s web it does what all the others do only a bit slower. Cortana is Microsoft’s answer to Google but I avoid all things Cortana because I don’t need all that data collection going to Microsoft. Also you have to sign in to Cortana with a Microsoft account. This is something I just don’t care to do.

  7. David

    March 20, 2017 at 7:25 am

    John speaks my mind!

  8. John

    March 25, 2017 at 12:01 am

    Thank You, Works Perfect in Firefox and Windows 10 x64 bit, i don’t dislike like edge i just hate that i had a default browser that i always use (Firefox) and then Cortana changes this to Edge, I don’t understand what the point of having the default browser means in this case. However it now runs perfectly for me, PS yes i had to restart before the ‘how do you want to open this file’ box appeared but i read the instructions first thankfully.

    Windows 1607 (OS Build 14393.969)
    Firefox v52.0.1

  9. Bob

    April 13, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    Ok, I have Cortana opening Firefox, but using bing to search. Is asking her to use my preferred search engine in Firefox asking too much? hehe

    • John S

      April 14, 2017 at 3:16 am

      Microsoft would be more successful if it stopped acting like Apple and make its features more open to third parties. Why not have Cortana work with other browser? Most browsers should be capable of allowing integration with Cortana. The whole ideal of a assistant is to work like you want to work. Not the other way around. I would probably enable Cortana if I could better customize it. I don’t use Siri much either, because after the novelty wears off, I don’t find it that useful.

  10. Jered

    June 10, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Good effort on the article Brian, but I followed your directions and a few things you explain appear incorrect, at least on my system: . First, to change ‘Default Apps’, you must navigate to Settings > APPS > Default apps, rather than Settings > System. Second, with Edgedeflector, an INSTALL Wizard definitely pops up and it installs just like any other program. Third, although Cortana now opens Chrome, it does so on the BING search page. Maybe these are unique to my setup but I doubt it.
    And to all: Microsoft has gone off the deep end in so many ways with Windows 10. The obscene amount of bloatware, inability (or lack of ease) to customize usage, completely illogical removal or location of very useful programs from previous OS, and the ‘Big Brother On Steroids’ forced use of MS programs and amount of tracking, are all simply scary and offensive.
    P.S. EDGE is horrible.

  11. StanLea

    August 3, 2017 at 1:23 am

    Would like to have been able to use Edge but cannot get it to connect to any website after recent AU & CU blah blah updates. Annoying ‘home’ page full of feeds I don’t want loads up but clicking any link nothing happens. Same when typing any URL – zilch response from Edge ‘no-browse’ browser.
    Of course Cortana search forces Bing via Edge so, for me, neither work anymore.
    Installed this EdgeDeflector, got nasty Red Malicious Software warning from Microsoft but installed anyway. Then added the Chrome extension to force Cortana to use my Chrome default.
    Results are patchy, sometimes a Cortana search fires up Bing via Chrome which then switches to Chrome and other times it just hangs on the bing site.
    Guess the EdgeDeflector needs a little more work.

  12. Grant Mayfield Robinson

    October 6, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    Too many sites on which I depend do not work properly in Edge. Why in the heck doesn’t Cortana use the default web browser? I’ve quit using Cortana, too, though that’s partly because it is very slow to open files found. Loathe Microsoft more and more every day!

  13. Harley

    January 1, 2018 at 2:28 pm

    ok i have edge deflector, but its not doing squat on my windows 10 fall creators update! i type something in cortana and NO window pops up, oh yet something BESIDES the hourglass/loading wheel popped up, something ASKING ME TO INSTALL THE PROGRAM! hate bing, and would love if cortana used my google search settings for my firefox!

  14. davesok

    February 15, 2019 at 4:44 am

    edgedeflecter wont open!!

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