Active Desktop - Launch Bar - June 1998

A launch bar appeared on my desktop after I installed Internet Explorer 4.0 with Active Desktop. I have found the launch bar to be a great way to ‘start’ applications. After some playing around, I found a few techniques that allow me to customize the bar. So this becomes the ‘tip of the month.’

My Launch Bar

A sample launch bar:

Adding a Toolbar

To add a toolbar, right mouse click on the launch bar to bring up the following menu items.

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In this example I had previously created a folder on my desktop called MSOffice. I added the MS Office application shortcuts to this folder. Once the folder was created, entering the folder name as the new toolbar name caused that folder to become a new launch toolbar. The result:

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Notice the ‘new’ tool bar was added to the launch bar with a title [MSOffice] and icons and text for each MS Office application.

Customize the New Bar

Right mouse click on the title to bring up the following menu:

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I usually turn off ‘show title’ and ‘show text’. Use ‘refresh’ to refresh the tool bar if icons are ‘mysteriously changed’.

Drag to New Position

Use the ‘handle’ to drag the tool bar into a new location. You can change the height of the start bar by dragging its top. In this example, I dragged the tool bar off the start bar onto the desktop:

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The Final Result

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An Alternative

You can also add shortcuts to the ‘default’ launch folder. The short cuts are stored in your profile:

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Updated 2000/10/29