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Windows 8 : Expert Drag-and-Drop Techniques, Taking Advantage of the Send To Command

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1/25/2015 7:45:17 PM

Expert Drag-and-Drop Techniques

You’ll use the drag-and-drop technique throughout your Windows career. To make drag-and-drop even easier and more powerful, here are a few pointers to bear in mind:

“Lassoing” multiple files—If the objects you want to select are displayed in a block within the folder list, you can select them by dragging a box around the objects. This is known as lassoing the objects.

Drag-and-scroll—Most drag-and-drop operations involve dragging an object from the contents area and dropping it on a folder in the Folders list (be sure to display the Folders list first). If you can’t see the destination in the Navigation pane, drag the pointer to the bottom of the pane. Windows Explorer will scroll the pane up. To scroll the pane down, drag the object to the top of the pane.

Drag-and-open—If the destination is a subfolder within an unopened folder branch, drag the object and hover the pointer over the unopened folder. After a second or two, File Explorer opens the folder branch.

Inter-window dragging—You can drag an object outside of the window and then drop it on a different location, such as the desktop.

Drag between Explorers—Windows 8 lets you open two or more copies of File Explorer (select File, Open New Window). If you have to use several drag-and-drop operations to get some objects to a particular destination, open a second copy of File Explorer and display the destination in this new window. You can then drag from the first window and drop into the second window.

Canceling drag-and-drop—To cancel a drag-and-drop operation, either press Esc or click the right mouse button. If you’re right-dragging, click the left mouse button to cancel.

Taking Advantage of the Send To Command

For certain destinations, Windows 8 offers an easier method for copying or moving files or folders: the Send To command. To use this command, select the objects you want to work with, right-click the selection, and then click Send To in the shortcut menu. You see a submenu of potential destinations, as shown in Figure 1.

Image

Figure 1. The Send To command offers a menu of possible destinations.

Note that the items in this menu (except the disk drives) are taken from the following folder that contains shortcut files for each item:

%UserProfile%\appdata\roaming\Microsoft\Windows\SendTo

This means that you can customize the Send To menu by adding, renaming, and deleting the shortcut files in your SendTo folder.

Click the destination you want, and Windows 8 sends the object there. What do we mean by send? We suppose that drop would be a better word because the Send To command acts like the drop part of drag-and-drop. Therefore, Send To follows the same rules as drag-and-drop:

• If the Send To destination is on a different disk drive, the object is copied.

• If the Send To destination is on the same disk drive, the object is moved.


Note

The user profile folder for a user is the following:

%SystemDrive%\Users\User

Here, %SystemDrive% is the drive on which Windows 8 is installed (such as C:), and User is the person’s username. Windows 8 stores the user profile folder for the current user in the %UserProfile% environment variable.



Forcing a Move or Copy

As with a drag-and-drop operation, you can force the Send To command to copy or move an object. To force a move, hold down Shift when you select the Send To command. To force a copy, hold down Ctrl when you select the Send To command. To force a shortcut, hold down Shift and Ctrl when you select the Send To command.


 
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