How to create shortcuts to files and folders

In our day to day life we use or want to use shortcuts. We use them to get to our desired destination so that we shorten the time needed to get there. When we are talking about shortcuts in the computer world and Windows Vista, the definition remains the same. A shortcut is a file that contains the path towards another file or folder and, by using it, we get to the desired item faster. In this tutorial I will show you how to create shortcuts and how to place them on your desktop or other locations.

In order to understand better how shortcuts work, just imagine that instead of opening Computer ->C:\A folder\another folder\…another folder\file.exe you can just click on an icon that takes you directly to file.exe.


How to create a shortcut

To create a shortcut, go to the desired file/folder, right click on it and select the Create Shortcut option.


A shortcut will be created in the same location. Now, you just need to decide where to place it. First, right click on the newly created shortcut and click on Cut.


Then, go to your desktop or to any other desired location, right click and select Paste.

To test the shortcut, double click on it. It should open the desired file or folder.

How to create a shortcut and save it directly on your desktop

If you want to have the shortcut placed directly on your desktop, there is an easier method: right click on the desired file/folder, click on Send to and then on Desktop (create shortcut).


How to use the Create Shortcut Wizard

Another way to create a shortcut is to go to the location where the shortcut will be saved, right click and select New and then Shortcut.


As you can see from the image below a New Shortcut has been created and all that remains is to have it point at the desired file or folder. To do this, just type the location of your file/folder or click on Browse and navigate to its location.


Once you have found the file/folder, select it, click on the OK button and then on Next.


Now, all you need to do is to give it a name and click on the Finish button.


Related articles:
Remove the arrow and the “shortcut” text from your Windows Vista shortcuts
How to use the Send To menu and how to customize it

4 thoughts on “How to create shortcuts to files and folders”

  1. Shortcuts but incomplete
    Nice article.
    One of the best, but it falls short of my goal.
    This is all for a mouse input device.
    My keyboard takes ten times as much desk space and I want to use it.
    Using my keyboard is often more efficient then a mouse.
    I entered keyboard shortcuts in some shortcut files.
    Like Ctrl+Alt+A
    It worked until I logged off and on.
    It is unstable the keyboard shortcuts that is.
    I’d like to solve this problem for my friends and myself.
    Since you wrote such a good article,
    you are my best hope…

  2. Windows Vista creating a shortcut to your desktop
    A quick and easy way to create a shortcut for a file or folder in Windows Vista to have on your desktop, is to HOLD DOWN the “Alt” key while left click-and-holding-down on the icon of the file or folder, then dragging it to your desktop and letting it go. Voila!

  3. Some other ways to make shortcuts for files even quicker…
    On the keyboard, depress ctrl + shift and at the same time in Windows Explorer, drag from the file with your mouse pointer. It will create a shortcut to that file or folder in the same window.

    An even quicker more clever way is to simply right-click while dragging your mouse off the file or folder in Windows Explorer, then release your mouse and a scroll will open, select Create Shortcuts here. Right-click culture is always the answer to most of life’s problems anyway.

    You can also select many files or folders at one time and do the same thing, which will create a bunch of shortcuts all at once.


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