I use Google Chrome as my default browser, and GMail as my default mail client. Of course GMail is web based. Windows is of course setup by default to automatically open either Outlook or Outlook Express, Windows Live Mail, etc. depending on which it believes is default. If you wish to enable your GMail account to automatically open when you click a mailto: link, do the following…

(This will work in Windows Vista or Windows 7)

  1. Open Windows Key (Start)–>and type “regedit” and hit enter in the Command Window.
  2. Browse to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\mailto\shell\open\command
  3. Right click on (Default) and click Modify
  4. Change the value to

"C:\Users\(Username)\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe" https://mail.google.com/mail?extsrc=mailto&url=%1XX

– The above will Compose a new mail message in a new tab. If you wish to open it in a new Chrome window, use the following:

"C:\Users\(Username)\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe" --new-window https://mail.google.com/mail?extsrc=mailto&url=%1XX