Putting a program’s icon back onto the Start menu
Q: I wanted to copy a program’s icon from the Start menu to the Desktop, but something went wrong.
Now the icon has disappeared from the Start menu’s All Programs area, and it’s only on the Desktop.
How do I put the icon back on the Start menu’s All Program’s area?
A: Like many things in Windows, the Start menu’s icons can be dragged around on your screen.
Unfortunately, that means a slip of the wrist can drag a program off its rightful place from the Start menu, and onto the adjacent Desktop.
Follow these steps to put a misplaced Desktop icon back onto the Start menu:
- Hover your mouse pointer over your misplaced Desktop icon.
- Hold down your right-mouse button. (This selects the misplaced icon for action.)
- While holding down your right-mouse button, point at the Start button, as shown in the figure above. (After a moment, the Start menu opens.)
- While still holding down your right-mouse button, point at the Start menu’s All Program’s area. (After a moment, the All Program’s menu opens.)
- While still holding down your right-mouse button, point at the menu area where you want to place your icon. (If your icon lived within its own folder in the Start menu, keep your right-mouse button held down while navigating to the icon’s original folder.)
- When your icon hovers over its original Start menu folder, let go of the right mouse button.
- When the menu appears, choose either Copy or Move to copy or move the icon back to its rightful place on the Start menu’s All Programs area.
These steps actually reverse your first action, but the safety of holding down the right-mouse button lets you choose to copy the icon back to original position on the Start menu.
Or, if you don’t want the copy on your Desktop, choose Move instead of Copy.
Tip: To prevent these mishaps, always drag while holding down your right mouse button. Then, when you drop the dragged icon, a menu asks if you’d like to Copy or Move the icon. Choose Copy for the best of both worlds: The icon stays on the Start menu, and a shortcut to that icon lives where you choose to drop it.