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Windows 10 Tip: Create Desktop Shortcuts for Universal Apps

Windows 10 provides easy ways to pin universal apps and other items to the new Start menu or taskbar. But if you want to create desktop shortcuts for these apps, it’s not as obvious on how to do it. Here’s a look at a couple of ways to create them.

Create Windows 10 Universal App Desktop Shortcuts

Method 1: Drag & Drop from Start

First we’ll take a look at the easiest way. Go to Start > All apps and find the app you want to create a desktop shortcut. Then just drag and drop it from the Start menu to the desktop.

drag from all apps

Method 2: Use File Explorer

Another way to do it is via File Explorer. To do that, hit the keyboard shortcut Windows Key+R to bring up the Run dialog and type: shell:AppsFolder and hit Enter or click OK.

2 run dialog

Here you’ll find all of the apps installed on your system. Right-click the app you want and drag it to the desktop. When you let go, select Create shortcuts here from the context menu that pops up.

5 create shortcut

You can also right-click an app and then select Creat shortcut from the context menu.

3 Create Shortcut

However, a message will come up saying you can’t create a shortcut in this location and ask to move it to the desktop. Click Yes.

4 Message

Either way you do it using the File Explorer method, it does add the app name with shortcut added to it. If you want to clean that up, you certainly can. I usually delete the dash and word shortcut.

Of course, once you have your shortcuts created, you can move them to any folder you want. On my Windows 10 systems, I use a program from Stardock called Fences. It provides an easy way to organize desktop items into different groups on the desktop. In the example below I created a fence for universal apps and added different shortcuts.

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6 Windows 10 Universal App Shortcuts

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One Response to Windows 10 Tip: Create Desktop Shortcuts for Universal Apps

  1. Ziggy November 3, 2015 at 5:27 pm #

    Nifty! Here’s another set of useful shortcuts for you (mainly system shortcuts that readers may be interested in). Hit the keyboard shortcut Windows Key+R to bring up the Run dialog and type:


    Here you will find three folders (Group 1, Group 2, Group 3) and within those folders are shortcuts to system utilities. I’ve copied each one and put them into my own folder on the desktop for quick access.

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