Open a Document in Browser instead of Client Application in SharePoint Online

Requirement: Open documents in the browser in SharePoint Online.

How to Force Documents open in Browser instead of the Client Application?

By default, most document types (e.g., Word, Excel, PowerPoint) are set to open in the client application (e.g., Microsoft Word) when you click on them in SharePoint Online. However, you can change this behavior and open documents in the browser instead. Here’s how:

The “Open Documents in Client Applications by Default” feature and the library settings “Opening Documents in the Browser” decide whether a document should be opened in the web browser or in a client application more here: How to Open Documents in Client Applications by Default in SharePoint Online?

What if you want to force open a document in the web browser? E.g., PPTX or DOCX in the web browser? Well, here is the trick: Just append “?web=1” to the file URL! Obtain the link to the file and add ?web=1 parameter to it so that the file opens in the Browser directly.

open document in browser sharepoint online

So, here, the direct link to open my document in the browser is:

You can also select the file, click on the “Open” dropdown, and select “Open in Browser” from the toolbar to open a document in the browser!

open in browser in sharepoint online

Note that some document types may not be supported for opening in the browser.

Salaudeen Rajack

Salaudeen Rajack - SharePoint Expert with Two decades of SharePoint Experience. Love to Share my knowledge and experience with the SharePoint community, through real-time articles!

One thought on “Open a Document in Browser instead of Client Application in SharePoint Online

  • Hi, I was wondering if you knew of any way in SharePoint Online to get the version history of files to open in the browser and not the client application? When you set the Library settings to open documents in the browser it only seems to work for the latest version. When you go to view the Version History of a file it will always open in the client application. This is the same for Excel, Word, Visio, etc. In our case, we want a user that doesn’t have the Visio client installed to be able to open a version in the browser just like it works with the latest version. Thanks.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *