This post might seem very elementary, but really, there are many, many out there who don’t have a good organizational system on their computers and they spend time just trying to find what they want.
I have done many private workshops and often when I see their desktop, I realize right away where some of their frustration is coming from: the bazillion shortcuts on the desktop for various action files, pictures, documents, etc. So, I want to spend a little time showing you what works for me, in hopes that it will help others.
Note: This tutorial shows Windows 7, but Vista is very similar. Windows XP users, it’s been so long since I used that operating system, I really can’t give suggestions.
Mac users – a post on organizing your desktop will come next week. I didn’t want to mix the two here.
What is a “shortcut?” A desktop shortcut is simply a direct route to a specific program, folder or file that you put on your desktop and when you click it, it shoots you straight to what you want.
When installing actions in PSE, I advice making a shortcut on your desktop for the Photo Effects folder. How to do that is in the screen print below (right click on the folder you wish to create a shortcut for).
Once you have the shortcuts on your desktop, you can move them wherever you like on the screen. As you can see below, I group mine by subject/topic.
- All editing programs are together
- Important folders are together
- Tools or programs not used everyday, but handy to have
- Online programs
- Internet browsers (I explain why I have all of them in the video)
- Program/file safety programs
- My kids math programs
- Game my kids play online
What if you have 200 shortcuts on your desktop and you want to get rid of them? Highlight them (click near one, then drag your mouse to highlight all you want selected) and then right click and choose delete. This will only delete the shortcuts, not the actual program/folders – as long as they are shortcuts. If the folder really does only exist on your desktop then you don’t want to delete it, you want to move it.
For example, my PSE and PS Catch folder lives on the desktop, so I would MOVE it rather than delete it.
If you have lots of folder residing on the desktop, highlight them as I said above, then right click and choose SEND TO and select Documents (for documents) or Pictures (for pictures).
See that strip along the bottom? That is your task bar. “Pin” programs that you use on a very frequent basis down there so you can easily get to them, especially while running/working in a different program (because your task bar always shows). How to pin to the task bar is shown below.