Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Add Standalone programs to your All Programs menu

When you click on your Start Orb and select ‘All Programs’ you are presented with a list of all the programs Windows 7 installed and all the programs you have installed.

But what if you have programs often referred to as ‘Standalones’ or ‘Portable Applications’ that do not require installation. Programs you simply copy to your computer or removable storage device e.g., a CD, USB flash drive, flash card or floppy disk and execute by clicking on its .exe file. An .exe file more often than not accessed via a Desktop shortcut.

The following is an example of how to include all Standalone programs on your ‘All Programs’ menu rather than having to access them via a Desktop shortcut?

1. Create a Windows 7 Explorer sub folder ‘Standalone Programs’.
2. Create an individual sub folder of your ‘Standalone Program’ folder for each of your standalone programs.
3. Add the standalone programs files (usually only an .exe file and maybe a readme file) to its appropriate folder.
4. Open each standalone program folder, right click on its .exe file and create a shortcut.
5. To be able to conveniently copy all the shortcuts, relocate them as individual files into your ‘Standalone Programs’ folder.
6 ‘Copy’ all of them.
7. Click on the Windows 7 Start orb, right clicked on ‘All Programs’ and select ‘Open’ from context menu.

Note: By selecting ‘Open’ you’ll be taken to Local Drive ( C ) > User > (your computer’s name) > Roaming > Microsoft > Start Menu.

8. Right clicked on ‘Programs’ and clicked on ‘New’ and ‘Folder’. Named the folder ‘Standalone Programs’.
9. Clicked on the ‘Standalone’ folder to open it and ‘Paste’ the shortcuts you copied from your Windows Explorer Standalone folder.

When you’re done you can click on ‘All Programs’ and ‘Standalone Programs’ to access all your individual standalone programs.

You can add new standalone shortcuts to your ‘Standalone Programs’ folder anytime or using my steps, add new folders to ‘All Programs’ that can include anything you want.

I’ve a confession. In a past Good Boot I bragged about overcoming my addiction to Desktop shortcuts. Well know I’ve fallen off the wagon.

Fortunately at my local Desktop shortcut anonymous meeting I was made aware of a super little Windows XP, Vista and 7 utility download - Toggle Desktop Icons (www.softwarecandy.com).

For only $7.46 I’m now able to make my Windows Desktop icons disappear and reappear instantly by simply pressing my keyboard ‘Pause’ key.

Embarrassed about your Desktop icon addiction? Hide them with Toggle Desktop Icons!

Here’s wishing you a Good Boot.

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