Updated: 11/16/2019 by Computer Hope

An association or file association is a term used to describe installed software that is associated with a particular file extension or file format. For example, in the Microsoft Windows operating system, a file with a .TXT extension is associated with Notepad or WordPad by default. When opening a file (double-clicking the file), the default associated program opens the file. If no program is associated with the file, you need to choose what program should be used.

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Operating system terms