Customize the Places Bar in the Open Dialog Box

It is probably safe to assume by now that you've opened a document or two in your Windows career. Furthermore, I'd venture to say that you've done so using the application's File | Open menu selection or by using the Open button.

When you open a file, you get a dialog box that looks like Figure 7-10:

Figure 7-10. The Open dialog box.

Notice the locations on the Open dialog box: History, Desktop, My Documents, My Computer, and My Network Places folders. As long as all your working files are stored in these places, you're in great shape. But I'll bet that some of your working files are in other folders. In fact, I'll wager that most are. For example, I place the vast majority of my writing projects in a shared folder called \Writing. Wouldn't it be nice to customize the Open dialog box so that I could access the \Writing folder with a single click?

It's easy. Here's how:

  1. For this example, I'll use Microsoft Word. With this application open, from the File menu, choose Open.

  2. In the Look in list, navigate to the folder that you want to add to the My Places bar. In this case, I navigate to the \Writing folder.

  3. Choose the desired folder, click the Tools button on the upper-right side, and then click Add to "My Places".

Cool, huh? Now your Open dialog box is a whole lot more functional than before. Now your actual favorite locations are part of the My Places bar alongside what Windows decides are your favorites. To move the shortcuts around, right-click on one and choose either Move up or Move down from the context menu. As you can see in Figure 7-11, I have placed the \Writing shortcut at the top of my list.

Figure 7-11. Bending My Places to your will.

This change to the Open dialog box affects the Save As selections as well, and you can change the contents in either place.

And by the way, if you ever want to restore the default Open dialog box to use the original folders (boooring!), simply right-click the shortcut and choose Remove.

Spring Into Windows XP Service Pack 2
Spring Into Windows XP Service Pack 2
ISBN: 013167983X
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2004
Pages: 275
Authors: Brian Culp © 2008-2017.
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