Change Default Email Client

How to set a default email app on Mac OS and Windows or have Gmail to handle all mail links

Last Updated: May 31st, 2022

Once you set a default email client, any email link (mailto:) you click on will automatically open in the designated application.

As of July 2019, Google Gmail is the Lane Community College email platform.

Email clients like Outlook and Apple Mail may require additional setup. See the following article for more information: Use IMAP to check Gmail on other email clients

My device already has an email client installed

My device does NOT have an email client installed


There are a variety of email applications available to install on Windows machines. If you already have a valid email application installed, follow these directions.

Windows 7

  1. Click on Start > Default Programs
  2. Click Set your default programs
  3. On the left hand side, select your preferred email application (i.e. Outlook)
  4. Click on Set this program as default and click OK

Windows 8

  1. Open the Control Panel>Default Programs
  2. Click Associate a file type or protocol with a program
  3. On the following list, double-click on MAILTO
  4. Select your preferred email client

Windows 10

  1. Open the Control Panel > Programs
  2. Click Default Programs
  3. Click Associate a file type or protocol with a program
  4. On the right side, click the current email client listed under Email
  5. In the pop-up, select your preferred email client

Mac OS

There is an Apple email client called Mail. This is the recommended application for Mac users.

  1. Open Mail
  2. If you are already signed into an email account, click Mail > Add account…
    1. If you are not signed into any account, skip this step
  3. Under Choose a Mail account provider… select Google
  4. It will prompt you to authenticate in an Internet browser by logging into Google
  5. When it asks which apps you want to use with this account, select Mail
    1. You can select others too, but know that your other apps (Calendar, Contacts, etc.) will then sync up with your LCC account

Email Handling in the Internet Browser

If you do not have a valid email client installed on your device, you can allow Gmail to handle all email links in your Internet Browser. This means that each time you click on an email link (mailto:) Gmail will open. This feature is available on Chrome and Firefox. Mac users should refer to the instructions above.

Google Chrome

  1. Open Google Chrome
    1. Make sure you are logged into your LCC Gmail/Google account *
  2. Open the Chrome menu
  3. Click Settings
  4. At the bottom of the page, click Advanced
  5. Under Privacy and security, select Site settings
  6. Click on Handlers
  7. Make sure that Allow sites to ask to become default handlers for protocols is enabled
    1. Make sure that is not blocked; if it is, click the to unblock it
  8. Open Gmail
  9. Click on the handler icon in your address bar An image of the handler icon
  10. Under Allow to open all email links? select Allow and click Done


  1. Open Firefox
    1. Make sure you are logged into your LCC Gmail/Google account *
  2. Open the Firefox menu An image of a hamburger menu
  3. Click Options
  4. Scroll down to the Applications section
  5. Next to mailto, select Use Gmail

* If you are logged into multiple accounts at the same time, this method will automatically open whichever Gmail account is set as your default. The default account is usually the account you signed into first. You can reset the default by logging out of all accounts and signing into the LCC account first.

ATC Support & Hours of Operation

Weekday Support, Monday - Friday

The ATC is open to in-person assistance. Support is available through the above remote options and on campus at CEN 208

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