Set Opera Browser to Open PDF Documents in Default PDF Viewer

Opera browser has been around for many many years. It has undergone a complete overhaul ever since the developers decided to drop the old gecko rendering engine and adopted the new blink rendering engine that is actually being developed and used by Google for their Chrome web browser. And you can see the effect – the newer versions of Opera are as fast and memory efficient as Chrome itself. Since they both used the same web rendering engine, they both have many of the features identical to each other. For example, Just like Chrome browser, Opera can also display PDF documents right inside the browser window.

But if you do not want to view PDF documents in the Opera browser and want to use your installed PDF viewer application to handle them, then you can make some changes in Opera settings. Here is how:

  1. Launch the Opera web browser and press the hotkey Alt+P to open the settings.
  2. Make sure that you select Websites section from the left-side before scrolling down the settings screen to find the PDF Documents feature.Opera Default PDF Viewer
  3. Select the checkbox labeled Open PDF files in the default PDF viewer application.
  4. Close the settings tab. Now Opera will no longer attempt to display PDF documents using the inbuilt PDF viewer.

Before you make changes in the Opera settings as explained above, you should also install a third party PDF viewer application in Windows so that PDF documents so that when you click on a PDF document link in the Opera web browser, it can open the document in the default PDF viewer. You can choose from a large number of popular PDF viewers for Windows, for example,  Foxit PDF Viewer, Adobe Acrobat Reader, Nitro PDF Reader, PDF X-Change Viewer (this is my personal favorite) and many more.


  1. I cannot follow any of the instructions as there is no websites section in settings. All I have is basic, advanced, rate opera and opera help. when I click on advanced it gives me privacy and security, features and browser. Help!

  2. Hmm press Alt-P is this howto for mac or something? Bad help on mobiles themselves.

  3. Same here. Check or uncheck the PDF box makes no difference. Still brings up the windows save as box.

    1. Yeah… from what I was told from an Opera support message, is that Opera does not support third party readers. So, assuming that is the case, Opera should do one of tree things:

      1. Remove the check box option that leads users to believe they can use Foxit Reader, or other such third party readers, then inform users and force an update to Opera. . .
      2. Leave the check box and make Opera work with third party readers, which is a fundamental and rudimentary feature on all other browsers, and let us update Opera. . .
      3. Leave everything as it is, refuse to join the 21st century, keep confusing and disappointing users, and let Opera lag behind other bloated browsers where a fundamental and rudimentary feature that’s been around for many years, actually works. . . Pretty much what they are already doing.

      I am going all-in on option #3.

  4. I did what you suggested regarding PDF viewer selection in Opera but still have a problem. When I click on a link to a PDF file (local or Internet), instead of displaying it in a tab, it brings up a Save As window. I expected it to run my Adobe Acrobat Reader DC. This works fine in Firefox 55.0.3 and Windows Explorer. I think this means that the file association is correct. My OS is Windows 7 and Opera is 47.0. Any thoughts?

Comments are closed.