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How To Change the Download Location in Any Web Browser

by Hung Nguyen

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Learn how you can change the default download location on popular web browsers: Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Edge, and Internet Explorer.

On almost any modern browser, when you download something: an image, a video, or a processed file on Smallpdf—the file should go straight to the default download folder on your device—which is usually titled ‘Downloads.’ Alternatively, depending on your settings, a dialog should pop up and prompt you to choose a download folder instead.

In case you wish to change the default location for downloaded items, e.g., to your desktop or another folder, check out our guide below. We’ll break down the process for the six most popular web browsers at the moment: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge, Opera, and Internet Explorer. Others should follow suit.


And what are you downloading from the Internet today?

Photo by Leon Seibert on Unsplash

How To Change the Download Location in Chrome

  1. First, launch your Chrome browser.

  2. Click the kebab menu icon (three vertical dots, top right corner).

  3. Click ‘Settings,’ scroll down, and choose ‘Advanced.’

  4. Via the ‘Downloads’ section, click ‘Change.’

  5. Choose the folder to set as the default download location.

And that’s that—Chrome should now save every downloaded file straight to the specified folder. The process is similar to the other five browsers, which we will cover below.

How To Change the Download Location in Safari

  1. Open Safari, click ‘Safari’ at the top-left cover.

  2. Click on ‘Preferences’ and locate the General tab.

  3. Click the dropdown menu for the ‘File download location’ option.

  4. Click ‘Other,’ locate the folder and click ‘Select.’

And you’re good to go for Safari. When you click on the dropdown menu, you can also choose ‘Ask for each download’ if you would like to pick a folder to download files to every time—albeit it’s a time-consuming route.

How To Change the Download Location in Firefox

  1. Open up Firefox, click ‘Options.’

  2. Click the ‘General’ tab and then ‘Files and Applications.’

  3. From there, click Browse and select your new download location.

  4. And you’re all done with setting your new Downloads folder.

How To Change the Download Location in Opera

  1. Launch Opera and open up the Settings page.

  2. Click ‘Advanced’ to display all advanced options.

  3. Under the ‘Downloads’ section, click ‘Change.’

  4. Choose the new default download folder.

How To Change the Download Location in Microsoft Edge

  1. Launch Edge, click the kebab menu icon (the three vertical dots).

  2. Hit ‘Settings’ and navigate to the ‘Downloads’ section.

  3. Click ‘Change’ and choose your download folder.

  4. All done—saved files should go to the new folder.

How To Change the Download Location in Internet Explorer

  1. Open IE on your device, click Tools.

  2. Click ‘View Downloads’ and then ‘Options.’

  3. Click ‘Browser’ and pick the download folder.

  4. Click ‘Select Folder,’ and it’s all set.

As you can see, the means to set a new download location in your web browser is pretty similar across browsers. You open up the Preferences/Settings page, and there should be an option to change your download folder’s location. The process should be near-identical even for other more obscure web browsers. The flows may differ slightly across operating systems, e.g., Windows vs. Mac—but it’s essentially the same.

Bonus tip: Ever wonder how you can download a whole web page as a PDF file? Check out our guide on Webpage to PDF.

Hung Nguyen
Hung Nguyen
Senior Growth Marketing Manager