Reducing the Number of Clicks When Saving Files Deep within a Website’s Structure by Using Shortcuts

When receiving lots of files via e-mail to convert to PDF and post on the website, it can be a time consuming project. Especially when the files are saved to a folder deep within a website and the software used to create the PDF doesn't remember the last folder you're saving to. Instead of clicking folder after folder for each file, let's look at folder shortcuts.

Background

Let's say a client sent a few e-mails containing 20 or so files. The files need to be saved as PDFs in the corresponding downloads folder for the stakeholder meetings page (see Figure 1). Files for the November 2011 meeting, for example, should be saved to the "2011-11" folder.

Screenshot showing the example website structure
Figure 1. Example Website Structure

With the destination folder being several directories deep, it takes quite a few clicks to save each of PDF where we want it…and Figure 1 doesn't even show the other folders that we may need to click through to get to the base website folder. To speed things up, let's create a shortcut that goes directly to the destination folder.

Utilizing a Shortcut

On a Windows computer, we just need to drag the "downloads" folder, while holding the Alt key, to a place that's easily accessibleā€”such as the desktop. A shortcut like the one shown in Figure 2 should have been created.

Screenshot of the folder shortcut
Figure 2. Shortcut to the Downloads Folder

Now, instead of clicking folder after folder, we can go to the desktop and click the shortcut which magically transports us to the destination folder.

Conclusion

There may be more efficient ways to get the PDFs where they need to be without shortcuts. We could, for example, move all the files to where they need to be on the website and convert them there. Some software defaults to the current folder when asking where to save the PDF. After the PDF is created, we could delete the originating file. We could also save the PDFs to an easily accessible folder (like the desktop). Then just drag the files over to the downloads folder when done.

In the end, we can use whatever method works best for the given scenario.

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