If you are a long-time Windows user, you might be more comfortable with using the Quick Launch toolbar on the taskbar instead of pinned taskbar shortcuts. Quick Launch is more compact (takes far less space), allows multiple rows and once it is enabled, running programs always appear to its right. Regular Winaero blog readers might be already knowing how to get back the good old Quick Launch toolbar in modern versions of Windows since I've covered it multiple times. Today, I would like to share a tip which will save your time - how to quickly add a new shortcut to the Quick Launch toolbar.
If you are not familiar with Quick Launch or have no idea how to turn it on, you might be interested in reading the following articles first:
By default, to add a new shortcut to the Quick Launch toolbar, you need to drag that shortcut to the toolbar. Or, alternatively, you can do it as follows:
- Right click an empty area of the Taskbar and unlock the Taskbar, if it is locked.
- Right click the empty space inside the Quick Launch toolbar.
- In the context menu pick the item "Open Folder":
- A new File Explorer window will appear. You can paste or create new shortcuts in the opened folder. All those shortcuts will appear in Quick Launch.
All these methods involve too many steps. There is a faster way to add new shortcuts to Quick Launch.
- Press Win + R keys together on the keyboard to open the Run dialog. See the full list of all Windows keyboard shortcuts with Win keys.
- In the Run box, type the following text:
The text above is a shell command. Read the following article for details: The list of shell commands in Windows 10.
- Once you hit the Enter key in the Run dialog, the "Send To" folder will be opened in File Explorer.
There, you need to create a new shortcut.
- Right click the empty space in the opened Send To folder and select New - Shortcut in the context menu. Use the following text as the shortcut target:
%UserProfile%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch
- Leave the shortcut name as it is. It will be named Quick Launch:
- Now, set some nice icon for the shortcut you just created. You can pick it from the following files:
Now, you will be able to add a new shortcut to Quick Launch with just a right click! For example, right click some icon on the Desktop and choose Send To -> Quick Launch. It will be added to Quick Launch immediately. See: This is very useful. You are done.
Note for Windows 10 users: The "Switch between windows" shortcut in Quick Launch does not work any more. It is broken due to the new Virtual Desktops/Task View feature and cannot be fixed. You can safely delete it. The Task View icon pinned to the Taskbar in Windows 10 is its replacement.