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Monday, August 20, 2001

Create shortcut for URL
Vipul Verma

THE Tips and Tricks is one of the most important part of computer learning, since it helps in exploring the hidden secrets of Windows, thus it makes working on computer simple and convenient. Besides this, it also helps in keeping pace with the fast-changing computer technology.

Normally, the computer programs are worth more than what we use it for, as in normal cases we are able to utilise only the basic features. The advanced features, which are also a part of the program often, remain unutilised due to ignorance. But at times they can be helpful. Take, for example, the case of auto complete feature of the browser. Normally for a site previously visited by you, you can type an incomplete URL into the Internet Explorer's Address bar. The browser's AutoComplete feature will fill in the rest.


By default it only searches for entries with .com, .org and .edu extensions. However, you can edit the Registry to make it search for .gov and .net URL extensions also.

Before you edit the registry, it is strongly advised to keep a back-up copy. Now after taking the back up click on the Start> Run and type Regedit. Now go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\ Internet Explorer\ Main\ UrlTemplate. Here you will find six strings with the under mentioned value names and data:

1 "www.%s.com"

2 "www.%s.edu"

3 "www.%s.org"

4 "%s.com"

5 "%s.edu"

6 "%s.org"

Now select Edit/New/String Value and add the following entries for values and data:

7 "www.%s.net"

8 "www.%s.gov"

9 "%s.net"

10 "%s.gov"

Close all Windows and restart your PC. After the PC restarts, you are all set to use the new extensions named .gov and .net in the browser to auto complete the URL.

Till now most of the persons knew that one could only create a short cut for the program and the folders/files in the computer. However, short cuts can be created for many more things. For the Net users, this tip can very useful.

If you thought that creating a bookmark is the only option for storing a site for quick and easy access, then you could be in for a pleasant surprise. You can actually create a short cut for any URL that you like right on your desktop and can access it by simply clicking on the short cut icon created on your desktop.

All you need to do to create a short cut for the URL is to drag and drop a URL or hyperlink from your browser window onto the desktop. However, if you use the right mouse button to drag it, then it will open a menu on your computer screen. This menu window will provide you with the options other than creating a short cut, like the option of saving the page as active content. This way you'll be able to see the page right at your desktop in place of wallpaper.

Normally, it is everyone’s endeavour to get the maximum out of the Internet connection. In order to get the best from the dial up Internet connection one has to fine-tuning and perform special settings so as to get the best setting for the optimum Internet performance. But, God forbid, if something goes wrong with the computer or if the dial-up connection settings get disturbed, then all your earlier efforts may go down the drain. By applying a simple trick you can save yourself from this problem and take a back up of the dialup connection.

You can use this back up to copy all connection settings to a new PC or in another partition, where you might have different operating system installed. Nevertheless this back up can also be used to restore the dial up connection in case your existing connection is damaged. All you need to do to take a back-up of the dial-up connection is open My Computer and then double-click the Dial-Up Networking icon to display the contents of this folder. Now click on the Icon of the particular dial up connection, which you normally use to connect to the Internet and drag the icon onto any blank space on the desktop or in any folder window.

This process creates a special shortcut called a Dial-Up Networking Exported File. Now you can copy the shortcut to a floppy disk or save it to some other location. In case you wish to restore the backup file on the same or a completely different computer, simply drag the shortcut icon into the Dial-Up Networking folder.

There is another important thing related to the Internet that could be of lot of relevance to the computer users. Normally, people do not remove and clear the browser’s cache that can slow down the PC. Also the Internet performance could get affected. However, if you keep both the disk cache and memory cache clean, then the health of your PC remains sound.

You can easily configure the Internet Explorer to cleanup the browser’s cache automatically each time you shut down. To turn this setting on, open an Internet Explorer window and click on Tools> Internet Options. The Internet options Window can also be opened from Control Panel.

After opening it, click on the Advanced tab and scroll down to the security section. Check mark the Empty Temporary Internet Files folder when browser is closed box. Now click OK to close both dialog boxes and then restart your browser to make the change effective.