Whether it’s a couple of clicks or the right mouse button, the Windows key or the browser, in Windows you can create shortcuts to important programs, files and web pages in just a few steps.
Quick Guide: How to Create a Desktop Shortcut
To link files:
- Right click on the desktop.
- Go to “New” > “Shortcut”.
- Enter the file name or go to “Browse”.
- Select the file and confirm the shortcut.
To link programs:
- Press the Windows key.
- Look for the program in the menu.
- Drag the icon to the desktop.
To link webpages:
- Open the page in the browser.
- Click the lock symbol next to the URL.
- Drag the web page link to the desktop.
What shortcuts can be created on the desktop?
Desktop shortcuts are small icons that allow you to open the desired file, web page, or program with a double-click. These shortcuts can be created for basically anything:
- For programs you use regularly
- For files you are currently working with
- For web pages you visit frequently
- For games you play regularly
You can also create a Windows 10 God Mode shortcut , which allows you to find all your control panel settings in one handy list. You can create as many shortcuts as space you have on your desktop. However, it is advisable to structure the shortcuts clearly and not to clutter the screen.
How to create a shortcut in Windows 10 and 11
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to create a shortcut for a file, a program, and a web page in Windows 10 and Windows 11.
Create a shortcut to a file (using a text file as an example)
Step 1. Right-click anywhere on the desktop.
Step 2. Go to “ New ” in the menu and then to “ Shortcut ”.
Step 3. If you know the location of the file, enter the corresponding keyword in the search bar. Another option is to click “ Browse ” and enter the location.
Step 4. Click on the file you want to link and confirm with “OK”. The file path will now appear in the menu bar. Click “Next.”
Step 5. In the next window, enter a name for the shortcut or choose the file name. Click “ Finish ” to create the shortcut on the desktop.
Create a shortcut to a program (using Word as an example)
Step 1. If you want to create a shortcut to a program, click the Windows key and select the desired program from the list. In our example we are going to create a shortcut to Word.
Step 2. Click the program icon, hold down the mouse button or touch screen, and drag the program to the desktop. The shortcut will be created automatically.
If you have dragged a program from the list to the desktop, a shortcut will be created automatically.
Create a shortcut to a web page (using the Edge browser as an example)
Step 1. To create a shortcut to a web page on desktop, the process is identical in Chrome, Edge, and Firefox browsers. Click on the padlock symbol that appears at the top next to the URL and drag it to the desktop.
Step 2. The selected web page will appear as a shortcut on the desktop. Double-click the icon to open it in your default browser.