I open Chromium and the browser ask me if I want to set it as my default browser. I click on "set as default" and close the browser.

But when I open Chromium again I get the same question. Ubuntu 11.04 seems not to set Chromium correctly as my default browser.

How to fix that?


Try changing your your preferred browser.

  • Open Preferred Applications from Preferences > Preferred Appplications.

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  • Change the default Web Browser to your liking.

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  • It's definitely worth trying to set it through Preferred Applications. There was (and possibly still is) a strange bug if you didn't set it this way. – 8128 Apr 30 '11 at 20:24
  • That's it! After changing the settings in Preferred Applications and setting Chromium as default browser again everything is working fine. Maybe a problem with a restore of an Ubuntu 10.10 backup. – 1passenger Apr 30 '11 at 20:27
  • I had to wait a minute ;-) Now it's accepted. Thanx. :-) – 1passenger Apr 30 '11 at 20:29

To change the browser globally, run the next command in a terminal:

sudo update-alternatives --config x-www-browser

Enter the number of chromium-browser and press Enter to confirm it.

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  • That's not working... – 1passenger Apr 30 '11 at 20:25
  • update-alternatives should work (note the extra s) – Seamus Apr 30 '11 at 20:26
  • @1passenger: the s after update-alternative slipped out. Try the new command. – Lekensteyn Apr 30 '11 at 20:27
  • Sorry, mistake in writing. I meant update-alternatives and not update-alternative. – 1passenger Apr 30 '11 at 20:32
  • Somehow I had two /usr/bin/chromium-browser in the list. One in auto and one in manual mode, but the manual one was selected. After I changed to the auto one it works. – keiki Feb 24 '14 at 10:11

Start google-chrome from a terminal in the foreground (leave off the &):

me:/home/me> google-chrome

Click on the prompt to make chrome the default browser.... notice that it is getting a permissions problem on .local/share/applications/mimeapps.list. The applications directory is owned by root and chrome was running as me. In order to fix the problem, I used:

chown -R me.me .local

Then I restarted google-chrome. It created the following entries in

cat .local/share/applications/mimeapps.list

[Default Applications]

I suppose you could just create those entries in the file if there is a security problem with changing the owner of the .local directory.

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  • It's actually the opposite of "a security problem with changing the owner of the .local directory". The only way the .local directory will have root ownership is if you executed a program with sudo root before the .local directory was created, and then it becomes very important to fix the ownership. – Auspex Feb 14 '16 at 17:18

For me updating the alternatives in Ubuntu 19.10 did not work, it appears it depends on the fact URLs are opened by xdg-open, and I found that this made it work:

xdg-settings set default-web-browser chromium-browser.desktop
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