How to Open an HTML (HTM) File on Windows and macOS

Have you downloaded a file with the .HTM extension and don’t know how to open it? If it happened, you are in the right place. I will explain in detail how to open HTML files on Windows and macOS.

Before looking at how to open an HTM file, I think it is necessary to give you some little information on this extension. I’ll start by telling you that HTM and HTML files are the same thing. In both cases, they are web pages, just like the ones you view using your web browser. So, on a technical level, there is no difference between HTM and HTML. The HTM file exists only as a matter of compatibility. The old 8-bit versions of Windows allowed a file to be named with a maximum of 8 characters plus three for the extension. With more modern versions, this limitation has been removed, and it is now possible to save a file with the full extension, therefore, no longer [file name] .HTM, but [file name] .HTML.

Having made this necessary premise, we can move on to the practical part and see how to open an HTML file on a Windows PC or Mac.

Open HTML files on Windows

Opening an HTML file on Windows is really a very simple operation. The operating system generally associates a specific program with each extension. The HTM or HTML files, being full-fledged web pages, will open with the default web browser. Then, all you have to do is locate the HTML file you want to open and double-click on it.

If you want to open the HTM file with another browser, right-click on the file icon, then select the “Open with” item, and then click on the name of the Web browser you want to use.

If you always want to open HTM files with a different browser than the one set as default:

  • Right-click on the HTML file;
  • Click on the item “Properties” ;
  • In the window that opens, click on the “Change” button, located next to the “Open with” item ;
  • Select the browser you want to use from the list, then click “OK.”
  • If the browser does not appear in the list, scroll down to the bottom and then click on the item “Other apps.” If you are still not satisfied, click “Look for another app on this PC” to choose a different software from those suggested.

Open HTML files on macOS

The same speech made previously is also valid for macOS. So again, all HTM or HTML files will open with your default web browser. To do this, double-click on the File, or if you prefer to open it with another browser, right-click on the file icon, then select the item “Open with,” and then click on the name of the app you want to use.

Also, on Mac, you can change the default app that is used to open HTM and HTML files, to do so:

  • Right-click on the HTM file, then click on “Get Info.” Alternatively, select the file and press the CMD + I keys ;
  • From the drop-down menu, under the heading “Open with,” select the app you want;
  • Click on the “Edit all” button and finally click on “Continue.”

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