My desktop shortcut icons are gone. How do I get them back?

This is a not uncommon problem. How it happens I can’t say, but how to get them back is easy.

Before I show you how to restore the shortcut icons, here is how to make them disappear:

  • Right-click on an empty spot on your desktop.
  • In the small menu move the pointer to View…
  • Move the pointer horizontally to the additional menu.
  • Move the pointer down to Show desktop icons. This item is checked when the icons are displayed. Click it so it will be unchecked.

The icons will immediately disappear.

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To restore the desktop shortcuts just follow the same procedure.

  • Right-click on the desktop.
  • In the small menu move the pointer to View…
  • Move the pointer horizontally to the additional menu.
  • Move the pointer down to Show desktop icons. This item is unchecked when the icons are not displayed. Click it so it will be checked.

The desktop shortcut icons will be restored.

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My own icons have never pulled the disappearing act, and I did not know about this. I am indebted to my friend AlexO for this solution.

.:.

© 2012 Ludwig Keck

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How do I choose the SkyDrive folders to sync with the desktop app?

The SkyDrive desktop app by default syncs, that is, copies to the computer, all folders in SkyDrive. If you do not wish to replicate all folders, you can choose which to sync. Here is how:

  • imageRight-click the SkyDrive icon in the notification area.
  • Click Settings in the small menu.
  • Click the Choose Folders tab
  • Click the Choose Folders button.

The SkyDrive folders will now be displayed with checkboxes in front. Uncheck the folders that you do not want replicated on your computer in the SkyDrive folder.

SkyDrive-sync-05The first time you do this you will see a notice as shown here. It says:

If you stop syncing files or folders, they’ll stay on SkyDrive but won’t be on this PC. If they’re already on this PC, they’ll be deleted.SkyDrive-sync-12

You can select root folder or sub-folders as you like.

  • Make the selections. Checked folders will be synced.
  • Click OK and click OK in the prior dialog.

The changes will be made momentarily.

Here are some screen shots showing the SkyDrive folder before some folders were removed from syncing and after, as well as the – unaffected – online SkyDrive.

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.:.

© 2012 Ludwig Keck

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How do I install SkyDrive in Windows Explorer?

Microsoft released a preview version of the app “SkyDrive for Windows” that adds SkyDrive to Windows Explorer imageand allows accessing SkyDrive as if it were just another folder on the computer.

It is just a simple download and a quick install. This works for Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Here is the download site:

Download SkyDrive for Windows

Click the above link, you will next see the download banner. Click Run. Sign in to your Microsoft Account and follow the dialogs.SkyDrive-NEW-12

In about a minute there will be a SkyDrive listing in Windows Explorer, in the Favorites section as shown in the illustration above.

Presently that entry cannot be expanded like other folders, however it works the same in the main pane.

It takes a bit to synchronize Windows Explorer with your SkyDrive – there is still the Internet download and upload delay – but shortly SkyDrive will work like any other folder.

imageAnd, yes, you can now drag and drop folders, including contents and sub-folders, right into SkyDrive.

Do keep in mind that your Internet connect speed will affect how quickly this takes place.

This is a much needed improvement and will make SkyDrive a much more useful feature.

.:.

© 2011 Ludwig Keck

Why is there a shield on my Shutdown button?

Once in a while an automatic update runs in the background on your computer imageand it now needs a shutdown or restart to complete the installation. Windows provides this little warning on the Shut down button in the Start menu.

You can get a bit more information on this when you move the pointer to the button.

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This is not an alarm, but do heed the advice and shut down or restart the computer when you take a break. Pat yourself on the back for having set up your machine to perform updates automatically.

.:.

© 2011 Ludwig Keck