How to Make IDLE the Default Editor for Python Files on Windows

Want to be able to open files in IDLE on Windows by double-clicking on them? You need to make IDLE the default editor for Python files. Here is how:

  1. Open a folder that contains a Python file.
  2. Right-click on any Python file.
  3. Select Properties.
  4. Next to the section that says “Opens with”, click the Change button.Change opens with button
  5. You may need to select More Apps.More Apps
  6. Click on Look for another app on this PC.Look for another app on this PC
  7. Navigate to where you installed Python. For me, that’s the Python35 folder on the C drive.
  8. Open Lib
  9. Open idlelib
  10. Select the idle.bat file.
  11. Click Open.
  12. Click OK to close out of Properties.
  13. Now you can open .py files in IDLE simply by double-clicking on them.Opens with IDLE

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Author: Nat Dunn

Nat Dunn is the founder of Webucator (, a company that has provided training for tens of thousands of students from thousands of organizations. Nat started the company in 2003 to combine his passion for technical training with his business expertise, and to help companies benefit from both. His previous experience was in sales, business and technical training, and management. Nat has an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA in International Relations from Pomona College.

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