Restore extention association under Vista like default ZIP viewer

If you ever made the mistake to associate for example an *.ZIP file to another application like 7-Zip and you desire to go back to the default Windows Vista zip open file it’s not an easy task.

It’s really silly because the zip opener is a DLL and the association is EXTREMELY more complex (who knows why!!!) than a simple EXE or bat association.

Enyway here you can find the proper solution.

We must thank for this the following site:


Another good article is here directly from Microsoft (they’re aware of their big mistakes..):

Here is an abstract (ok almost full article):


Change default programs using Set Program Access and Computer Defaults

You must be logged on as an administrator to perform these steps.

In Set Program Access and Computer Defaults, you can specify the default programs that Windows uses for common activities such as browsing the web and sending e‑mail. You can also specify which programs are available from the Start menu, the desktop, and other locations.

The options you set in Set Program Access and Computer Defaults apply to all users on your computer. To set defaults for specific users, see Change which programs Windows uses by default.


Open Set Program Access and Computer Defaults by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking Default Programs, and then clicking Set program access and computer defaults.Administrator permission required If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.


To specify the default programs for activities such as browsing the Internet and sending e‑mail messages on your computer, choose one of the following configurations, expand the configuration and choose options if available, and then click OK.


Select To

Computer Manufacturer

Restore your settings to those selected by the manufacturer of your computer. This option is available only if the

computer manufacturer installed this version of Windows on your computer and established settings for this feature.

Microsoft Windows

Use programs that are included with Windows as the defaults. Even though Microsoft programs will be used by default, you can still access all programs installed on your computer.



Use non-Microsoft programs that are installed on your computer as the defaults. If you choose this option, access to the specified Microsoft Windows programs will be removed. You can, however, restore access to Microsoft programs at any time by changing the setting to Custom.



Use a combination of non-Microsoft and Microsoft Windows programs as the defaults. A custom configuration allows you to specify default programs for each activity. If you do not want a program to appear on the Start menu, the desktop, or other locations where programs typically appear, clear the Enable access to this program check box next to the program name.



  • The Custom option is always selected by default. All options presented in the Computer Manufacturer (if available), Microsoft Windows, and Non-Microsoft configurations are available in the Custom section.
  • In the Custom section, if you select Use my current, the current default program for that category will continue to be used.
  • Software manufacturers determine how their products work with this feature. Some non-Microsoft programs might continue to show icons on the Start menu and elsewhere even if you clear the Enable access to this program check box for that program.