Computer shortcuts are links to specific files stored elsewhere in your computer. They provide easy access to particular files stored in places that will ordinarily take you much time to locate. Keeping your files in safe location elsewhere in your computer storage is always the best bet instead of keeping them on your computer desktop. A lot of not cool scenarios led me to putting up this article on why you should use shortcuts on your desktop over actual file.
Most times we tend to keep our files where they will be easily reachable to us. On doing that, we create a desktop clutter when we store too many files on it. This has too many implications on the overall performance of our computer which I will discuss below.
It is advisable to store your files unsafe locations. I recommend partitioning your hard drive into more than one partitions. With this, you can save your personal files like media, documents, raw files, folders etc. in your recovery disk (partition). Computer programs are automatically installed with all its files to a location in your computers c drive. You can actually change that during installation (This is not recommended!).
As a lazy uptown blogger I am certainly guilty of parking files on my desktop where I can easily open them while my eyes are closed “hahahahaha”. However, this lazy attitude of mine and probably yours too (winks) comes with an unexpected price. This is not actually the reason for this write up though. The aim of this article is to put in clear terms the reasons while we should resort to a better alternative. The alternative is to use or create shortcuts to such files instead of the actual files on our computer desktop.
A shortcut is made up of;
- an icon, the picture that is specific to a program it is associated with
- an arrow on the bottom left of the icon
- the shortcut name
How to create shortcuts of your files and folders
You can create shortcut to a file in Windows by;
- right click on the file or folder
- then move your pointer to “Send to”
- and select “Desktop (Create Shortcut)”
Below are Reasons why you should use Shortcuts on Your Desktop over actual file
Yes, I have deleted so many important files on my desktop unintentionally. It can happen to anybody such that you wish to delete a certain file only for you to end up deleting something else in error.
Imagine that feeling then; hey, what the heck did I just do?
This is not usually the problem when we only do the conventional deleting. This will send it to the recycle bin and we can recover it. Instead, it becomes a problem when we do ‘alt-del’ that will delete the file permanently.
I uses this combo a lot ‘lol!’
By using shortcuts, the particular shortcut to the file will be deleted and nothing will happen to the file in its location.
Loss of files when changes are made to c drive
Desktop’s storage location is in the c drive hence will be cleared of its content when we format our C drive. Also resetting our computer ‘completely’ will flush out all files and apps stored in the Desktop (C drive entirely). This is also the case when we install a new operating system on our c drive. Restoring your computer using a restore point does not delete personal files
Having original files in recovery partition with a shortcut link to it on the desktop will prevent all these. The shortcuts will be cleared while the files stay safe. After making the changes, you can back to where you keep the original files and recreate a shortcut to the desktop.
While hovering your mouse and moving the pointer on your desktop screen, you might accidentally move a file to another folder. Hehehehe, it happens like a magic.
It is not a problem though if we are aware of the folder which the file is moved to. However, because of the speed with which it do occur most times, we might get confused on the particular place the file is moved to. This will require that we begin to open and check every individual folder we suspect. Hence, taking a lot our productive time. With shortcut, we can easily forget about looking for it in all folders and instead create a new shortcut to the file.
In some cases, we will not even know which of the files or shortcuts that is moved and the folder it is moved to. In such case, you can get your file or shortcut back by rearranging how your files are arranged in the desktop.
You can do this in Windows and Mac desktop by right clicking any blank area in the desktop and select “sort by”, “Date modified” This will place your latest modified file or folder to the topmost of all files on your desktop or to the bottom right of them. This means that such folder contains the file or shortcut that is moved because it is the last modified.
Reduces Computers performance
The last reason might seem unconnected to the issue we are discussing but actually it is part of it. Earlier in this article, I mentioned about desktop clutter reducing your computer speed. Filling your desktop space with all your files is not cool at all. It slows down your computer ad reduces its performance.
I now take the way I arrange and manage my files on my computer system very serious. Guess what? I don’t regret it knowing that my personal files are safe.
You should also be aware that you can create shortcut to any file type, folders and programs
This article is open to modification, I will welcome any suggestion, addition, or corrections from you. Please use the comment box to reach to me and also to express thought on this post.
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Thank you for reading.