I have a custom file type, for example ".xyz" and I have a portable type application that can open that custom file type. I set up the portable application as the default application for opening .xyz files using the open with dialog.

But later on, I decided to store the portable application somewhere else on my computer. I went to the open with dialog again chose Look for another app on this PC and navigated to the new location of my portable application, but after selecting it, it still opened the application from the old location.

It's like Windows recognizes that the application has the same name, and so it is falling back on the existing file path that was used for that application instead of updating the file path. How can I update the execution path for the open with application?

1 Answer 1


I found where the application path is stored inside of regedit and changing the path there made the file launch the correct application in the correct location.

I opened regedit and did a search for nameOfApplication.exe searching only with "Look at" Data checked. The first result ended up being something like

Computer\HKEY_USERS\{some unique user id}\SOFTWARE\Classes\xyz_auto_file\shell\open\command

Under that location was a (Default) REG_SZ where the data was the path to the application. I noticed that the path was still pointing to the old location, and after updating the path in the data entry launching the file ran from the correct location.

This feels like a fairly hacky workaround, and I'm still curious if there is a cleaner way of handling this.

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