Safari: PDFs now open directly in Safari instead of in Preview

When using the latest version of Safari with Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger," PDF links that you click will now open directly in the Safari window for your viewing convenience. Before Tiger, PDFs would open in Preview.

This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.

If you still prefer Preview, simply Control-click the PDF link (or right click on a two-button mouse) and choose Download Linked File from the shortcut menu. Once the file is on your desktop, double-click it to open in Preview.


  1. In addition to Control-clicking the link and selecting Download Linked File as described above, you also have the choice of using Option-click on the link to shortcut the process even further.
  2. If you do open a PDF in a Safari window, you can Control-click on the PDF itself and choose Open with Preview.
  3. Due to certain server configurations, some PDFs will still download to your desktop instead of opening in a Safari window.
  4. If you use a third-party PDF plug-in for Safari, it will block Safari's built-in PDF support.
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