Google Chrome has a handy, built-in Chrome PDF Viewer that might be convenient if you want to view the PDF as quickly and as easily as possible, but if you almost always prefer to download copies of PDF files that you select, you can disable the Chrome PDF viewer to make those downloads happen automatically.This article teaches you how to stop PDF files from opening in Google Chrome by default.
Reasons to Enable the Chrome PDF Viewer
- You want fast and instant access to PDF files.
- You don’t always necessarily want to download every PDF file that you click on to view.
- You don’t plan on editing any of the PDF files you open and only need access to the basic options (download, print, zoom in, zoom out, etc.)
- You don’t favor any other PDF programs over Chrome’s PDF viewer.
Reasons to Disable the Chrome PDF Viewer
- You want a saved copy of the PDF files you open in Chrome.
- You often forget to download PDF files after opening it in Chrome, then find yourself having to relocate the PDF file link at a later time.
- You want to eliminate the step of having to view the PDF file in Chrome first.
- You want to automate the download process.
- You prefer to use a different PDF program to view files and/or edit them.
How to Enable or Disable the Chrome PDF Viewer
You can enable or disable Chrome’s PDF viewer setting any time you want, as often as you want. The following instructions can be followed for Chrome users on all major operating systems, including macOS, Microsoft Windows, and Linux.
Note: Chrome’s PDF viewer setting is typically enabled by default so PDF files open automatically in a new tab within the Chrome browser.
Open Google Chrome. It’s in the All Apps area of the Start menu (Windows) or the Applications folder (macOS).
- Click ⁝. It’s near the top-right corner of Chrome.
- Click Settings. It’s toward the bottom of the menu.
- Scroll down and click Advanced. It’s at the bottom of the page.
- Scroll down and click Content settings. It’s near the bottom of the “Privacy and security” group.
- Click PDF documents. It’s near the end of the page.
- Slide the switch to the On position. As long as the switch is blue, Chrome will prompt you to download the PDF instead of displaying a preview.
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