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How to Customize and Use the Quick Launch Toolbar in Windows 11


How to Download and Use the Quick Launch Bar in Windows




If you are looking for a way to access your commonly used apps and files from your taskbar, you might be interested in the quick launch bar. The quick launch bar is a handy feature that allows you to add shortcuts to your taskbar and open them with one click. In this article, we will show you how to download and use the quick launch bar in Windows 10 and Windows 11, as well as some alternatives that you can try.


What is the Quick Launch Bar?




A brief introduction to the quick launch bar and its features




The quick launch bar was introduced in Windows XP as a way to provide easy access to common apps from your taskbar. It was a small toolbar that contained icons for programs, folders, or files that you could drag and drop onto it. You could also customize it by resizing it, hiding or showing its text, and changing its position on the taskbar.




quick launch bar download


Download File: https://www.google.com/url?q=https%3A%2F%2Ft.co%2FHVGOUp5Odj&sa=D&sntz=1&usg=AOvVaw3sxrJbUcfZ9lWUvBMj1tnE



Some of the benefits of using the quick launch bar are:


  • It saves you time and clicks by opening your favorite apps or files with one click.



  • It reduces clutter on your desktop by keeping your shortcuts organized in one place.



  • It gives you more control over your taskbar by letting you choose what icons to display and how to arrange them.



Why was the quick launch bar removed from Windows?




The quick launch bar was removed from Windows 7 onwards, as Microsoft introduced a new feature called pinning. Pinning allows you to pin apps or files to your taskbar or start menu, so you can access them quickly. Pinning is similar to the quick launch bar, but it has some differences:


  • Pinning only shows icons, not text, on your taskbar.



  • Pinning does not let you drag and drop shortcuts onto your taskbar. You have to right-click an app or file and select "Pin to taskbar" or "Pin to start".



  • Pinning does not let you resize or move your pinned icons on your taskbar. You can only rearrange them by dragging them left or right.



While pinning is useful for some users, others might prefer the old quick launch bar for its flexibility and simplicity. If you are one of them, don't worry. You can still bring back the quick launch bar in Windows 10 and Windows 11 with some simple steps.


How to Add the Quick Launch Bar in Windows 10




The steps to create a new toolbar and enter the quick launch folder path




To add the quick launch bar in Windows 10, you need to create a new toolbar on your taskbar and point it to the folder that contains the quick launch shortcuts. Here's how:


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  • Right-click on a blank area of your taskbar and select Toolbars > New toolbar.



  • In the window that opens, enter %APPDATA%\\Microsoft\\Internet Explorer\\Quick Launch\\ into the navigation field at the top and press Enter.



  • Click Select Folder.

  • You should see a new toolbar on the right side of your taskbar with the label Quick Launch. If you don't see it, you might need to unlock your taskbar by right-clicking on it and unchecking Lock the taskbar.



How to customize the quick launch bar and move it to the left side of the taskbar




Now that you have added the quick launch bar, you can customize it to your liking. Here are some tips:


  • To add shortcuts to the quick launch bar, you can drag and drop any app, file, or folder onto it. You can also right-click on any shortcut and select Copy, then right-click on the quick launch bar and select Paste.



  • To remove shortcuts from the quick launch bar, you can drag and drop them off the taskbar, or right-click on them and select Delete.



  • To change the size of the icons on the quick launch bar, you can right-click on it and select View > Large Icons or View > Small Icons.



  • To show or hide the text labels on the quick launch bar, you can right-click on it and select Show Text or Hide Text.



  • To move the quick launch bar to the left side of the taskbar, you can drag it by its handle (the dotted vertical line) and drop it where you want. You might need to adjust the size of the other toolbars on your taskbar to make room for it.



Once you are happy with your quick launch bar, you can lock your taskbar by right-clicking on it and checking Lock the taskbar. This will prevent any accidental changes to your taskbar layout.


How to Use the Quick Launch Toolbar in Windows 11




The steps to download and extract a ZIP file that contains the quick launch toolbar




If you are using Windows 11, you might notice that the method above does not work. This is because Windows 11 does not have a folder for the quick launch shortcuts. However, there is a workaround that you can use to get the quick launch toolbar in Windows 11. Here's how:


  • Download this ZIP file that contains the quick launch toolbar: https://www.winhelponline.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/QuickLaunch.zip



  • Extract the ZIP file to a location of your choice. You should see a folder called QuickLaunch that contains several shortcuts.



  • Right-click on a blank area of your taskbar and select Toolbars > New toolbar.



  • In the window that opens, navigate to the folder where you extracted the ZIP file and select the QuickLaunch folder.



  • Click Select Folder.



  • You should see a new toolbar on the right side of your taskbar with the label QuickLaunch. If you don't see it, you might need to unlock your taskbar by right-clicking on it and unchecking Lock taskbar.



How to pin the quick launch toolbar to the taskbar and access its shortcuts




The quick launch toolbar in Windows 11 works differently from Windows 10. Instead of showing all the shortcuts on your taskbar, it shows only one icon that opens a menu with all the shortcuts. Here's how to use it:


  • To pin the quick launch toolbar to your taskbar, you need to drag it by its handle (the dotted vertical line) and drop it next to another pinned app. You should see a pin icon appear on its left side.



  • To access its shortcuts, you need to click on its icon (a blue arrow) and select one from the menu that pops up.



  • To add shortcuts to the quick launch toolbar, you need to open its folder (the one you extracted from the ZIP file) and drag and drop any app, file, or folder onto it. You can also copy and paste shortcuts into it.



  • To remove shortcuts from the quick launch toolbar, you need to open its folder and delete any shortcut that you don't want.



  • To customize its icon, you need to open its folder and right-click on its desktop.ini file. Select Properties > Customize > Change Icon. Choose an icon from the list or browse for one from your computer. Click OK > Apply > OK. You might need to restart your computer for the changes to take effect.



Note that the quick launch toolbar in Windows 11 is not officially supported by Microsoft, so it might not work properly or cause some issues. Use it at your own risk.


Alternatives to the Quick Launch Bar




A brief overview of some other apps that provide quick access to your favorite content




If you are not satisfied with the quick launch bar or want to try something different, there are some other apps that you can use to access your favorite content from your taskbar or desktop. Here are some of them:


  • RocketDock: A free app that adds a Mac-like dock to your Windows desktop. You can customize its appearance, position, and behavior, and add any app, file, or folder to it. You can also use various skins and icons to make it look more appealing.



  • ObjectDock: A paid app that offers similar features as RocketDock, but with more options and functionality. You can create multiple docks, tabs, and widgets, and use animated effects and transitions. You can also use docklets, which are mini-apps that run on your dock, such as a clock, a weather app, or a calendar.



  • 7+ Taskbar Tweaker: A free app that lets you tweak various aspects of your taskbar, such as grouping, ordering, resizing, and pinning. You can also change the behavior of the mouse and keyboard on your taskbar, such as using the scroll wheel to switch between apps or using the middle click to close them.



  • TaskbarX: A free app that lets you center your taskbar icons and add some animations and effects to them. You can also adjust the transparency, color, and style of your taskbar.



A comparison table of the features and benefits of each app




To help you choose the best app for your needs, here is a comparison table of the features and benefits of each app:



App


Features


Benefits


Quick Launch Bar


- Adds shortcuts to your taskbar- Shows icons and text- Lets you drag and drop shortcuts- Lets you resize and move the toolbar- Works in Windows 10 and Windows 11 (with a workaround)


- Saves you time and clicks- Reduces clutter on your desktop- Gives you more control over your taskbar- Provides easy access to common apps and files


RocketDock


- Adds a Mac-like dock to your desktop- Lets you customize its appearance, position, and behavior- Lets you add any app, file, or folder to it- Supports various skins and icons- Works in Windows 10 and Windows 11


- Enhances the look of your desktop- Offers more flexibility and functionality than the quick launch bar- Provides quick access to your favorite content- Supports various themes and styles


ObjectDock


- Offers similar features as RocketDock, but with more options and functionality- Lets you create multiple docks, tabs, and widgets- Supports animated effects and transitions- Supports docklets, which are mini-apps that run on your dock- Works in Windows 10 and Windows 11


- Provides more features and functionality than RocketDock- Allows you to organize your content into categories and groups- Adds some interactivity and fun to your desktop- Provides useful information and tools on your dock


7+ Taskbar Tweaker


- Lets you tweak various aspects of your taskbar- Lets you change the grouping, ordering, resizing, and pinning of your taskbar icons- Lets you change the behavior of the mouse and keyboard on your taskbar- Works in Windows 10 and Windows 11


- Improves the usability of your taskbar- Allows you to customize your taskbar to suit your preferences- Provides more convenience and efficiency on your taskbar- Works with the native Windows taskbar


TaskbarX


- Lets you center your taskbar icons- Lets you add some animations and effects to your taskbar icons- Lets you adjust the transparency, color, and style of your taskbar- Works in Windows 10 and Windows 11


- Makes your taskbar look more modern and elegant- Adds some flair and dynamism to your task bar icons- Allows you to customize your taskbar to match your theme and mood


Conclusion




A summary of the main points and a call to action for the readers




The quick launch bar is a useful feature that lets you access your common apps and files from your taskbar with one click. It was removed from Windows 7 onwards, but you can still bring it back in Windows 10 and Windows 11 with some simple steps. You can also customize it by adding, removing, resizing, and moving your shortcuts.


If you want to try something different, you can also use some other apps that provide quick access to your favorite content from your taskbar or desktop. Some of these apps are RocketDock, ObjectDock, 7+ Taskbar Tweaker, and TaskbarX. They offer various features and benefits that can enhance the look and usability of your desktop.


So, what are you waiting for? Download and use the quick launch bar or one of its alternatives today and see how it can improve your productivity and enjoyment on your computer.


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions about the quick launch bar and its alternatives:


  • Q: How do I remove the quick launch bar from my taskbar?A: To remove the quick launch bar from your taskbar, you can right-click on it and select Toolbars > Quick Launch or Toolbars > QuickLaunch, depending on which version you are using. This will uncheck the option and hide the toolbar. You can also delete the folder that contains the quick launch shortcuts if you don't need them anymore.



  • Q: How do I backup or restore my quick launch shortcuts?A: To backup or restore your quick launch shortcuts, you can copy or paste the folder that contains them to another location. The folder path for Windows 10 is %APPDATA%\\Microsoft\\Internet Explorer\\Quick Launch\\, and the folder path for Windows 11 is the one where you extracted the ZIP file.



  • Q: How do I install or uninstall the other apps that provide quick access to my favorite content?A: To install or uninstall the other apps that provide quick access to your favorite content, you can follow the instructions on their official websites or download pages. Some of them have installers that you can run, while others are portable apps that you can extract and run without installation.



  • Q: How do I update or troubleshoot the other apps that provide quick access to my favorite content?A: To update or troubleshoot the other apps that provide quick access to your favorite content, you can check their official websites or download pages for any updates or fixes. You can also contact their developers or support teams for any issues or feedback.



  • Q: How do I choose the best app for my needs?A: To choose the best app for your needs, you can compare their features and benefits using the table above. You can also try them out yourself and see which one suits your preferences and requirements.





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