Marshall Adult Education




TECH TIP:  Shortcuts Part 2


A shortcut makes your life easier.  Shortcuts usually reside on your Desktop.  The shortcut allows you to open a file, folder or program without finding the original.


Last week, we made shortcuts of programs found in the Start Menu.  This week, we make shortcuts of data files and folders.  Most data files are stored (saved) in the My Documents folder – or at least they should be.  If you keep your data files in this one central location, like the My Documents folder, then it is easier to back them up.  You do back up your data files regularly, don’t you?       


Shortcuts of files and folders

OK, there are 2 ways to create shortcuts of files or folders.

     1.  Open up you’re My Documents folder and find a file you want to make a shortcut for on your desktop.  Right-click on the file.  Click on Send To and click on Desktop (create shortcut).  That’s it, the shortcut is on you desktop.


     2.  You can also create a short cut by right-clicking on an icon and dragging it to the desktop.  Release the right mouse button and click on Create Shortcut Here.


When you no longer want or need a shortcut, you can just drag it to the Recycle Bin.


More Shortcut Stuff


The Quick Launch section of the Task Bar is a special area in which you can place shortcuts.  The Quick Launch section does not automatically show up in your Task Bar.  To get it to show, right-click in a blank area in the Task Bar (it’s best not to have any programs running), point to Toolbars, and click on Quick Launch.   The Quick Launch will appear in the Task Bar right next to the Start button.  You can drag any shortcut icons from your desktop to the Quick Launch area.


When you first show your Quick Launch, there will probably be some shortcuts already in the Quick Launch. If they are shortcuts you don’t want, just drag them to the Recycle Bin.  You can add more shortcuts to Quick Launch by just dragging them from your Desktop into the Quick Launch area.  If you drag a shortcut from the Desktop to the Quick Launch area, you then no longer need the shortcut on the Desktop – so you can trash it.


You can add as many shortcuts to the Quick Launch section as you want.  If you have a lot of shortcuts in Quick Launch, you can resize the Quick Launch area so it doesn’t fill up the entire Task Bar.  Just place you mouse over the vertical dotted lines on the right side of the Quick Launch section until the cursor turns into a line with double arrowsClick and drag it to the left (or right) to resize it.  


Now if you have a lot of shortcuts (like me – I have 27).  When you click on the two small right arrows on the right side of the Quick Launch section, a window will pop open and your list of shortcuts will appear – neat.


One last shortcut tip.

You can move the Quick Launch out of the Task Bar.  You can move it to the top (border) of the screen, to the left side or the right side, or you can place it anywhere on the Desktop.


Here’s how: 

Place the cursor over the vertical dotted line on the left side of the Quick Launch section.  When it turns into a line with two arrows, just click and drag it to the location you want   I actually have moved my Quick Launch to the top of the screen so that all 27 of my shortcut icons are always visible all the time.  If you move it to the top, you want to right-click on it and click on Always On Top.


Try some of these neat shortcut tips – make you computing easier.

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