Disable Internal PDF Viewer in Google Chrome Browser

Ever since I discovered about Project Gutenberg website in the late 2000s, I have been downloading tons of PDF files of classic e-books from there. And then there is the ginormous website Archive.org resulting from the international collaboration among so many universities and offering access to a wealth of digitized books from their libraries – so many ebooks that nobody can read them in their entire lifetime. These ebooks are available in many formats including the PDF format.

Some of these PDF files are over 100 MB in size and it can take a few minutes before Chrome browser can open these PDF documents for you if you click on their links. A better approach would be to just download the PDF documents and use a dedicated PDF viewer software like Foxit PDF Reader or Sumatra PDF  to view the PDF files later. Fortunately, Google Chrome web browser allows this in its settings and here is how you can change it:

  1. Launch Google Chrome web browser.
  2. Copy paste chrome://settings/content/pdfDocuments in the address bar of Chrome browser.Disable Internal PDF Viewer in Chrome
  3. Enable the option to Download PDF files instead of automatically opening them in Chrome.
  4. Now you can go about your everyday business in Chrome browser, whenever you click on a PDF link, Chrome will download the file in the default download folder instead of displaying it in the Chrome browser.

Once the PDF documents have been downloaded, you can then double-click on them to open them in the default PDF viewer application that you have installed on your computer. For computers with low specs, Sumatra PDF is a great choice as it uses a minimal of the system resources and is really fast in opening the PDF documents.

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