How to Prevent "Shortcut to" Prefix from Being Added to New Shortcuts

This article was previously published under Q253212
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IMPORTANT: This article contains information about modifying the registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure to back it up and make sure that you understand how to restore the registry if a problem occurs. For information about how to back up, restore, and edit the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
256986 Description of the Microsoft Windows Registry
This article describes how to remove the "Shortcut to" prefix that is added to new shortcuts.
By default, the "shortcut to" prefix is added to all new shortcuts. To disable this behavior, use one of the following methods:

Method 1: Rename a Shortcut Five Times

  1. Right-click the My Computer icon, and then click Create Shortcut. This places a shortcut named "Shortcut to My Computer" on the desktop.
  2. Right-click the shortcut, and then click Rename.
  3. Rename the "Shortcut to My Computer" file to "My Computer."
  4. Delete the "My Computer" shortcut.
  5. Repeat steps 1 through 4 four times. The sixth time you create the shortcut, the "Shortcut to" prefix is not added.
NOTE: You do not have to use My Computer to create the shortcut. You can use any file, folder, drive, computer, or printer. To restore the "Shortcut to" prefix, delete the registry key listed in method 3 and then restart the computer.

Method 2: For Windows 95 and Windows 98 Use the Tweak UI PowerToys Tool

  1. Click Start, point to Settings, click Control Panel, and then double-click the TweakUI icon.
  2. On the Explorer tab, click to clear the Prefix 'Shortcut to' on new shortcuts check box, and then click OK.
  3. Restart the computer.
For Windows 98, see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base for information about obtaining TweakUI:
190643 How to Install and Uninstall the TweakUI Tool in Windows 98
NOTE: Windows 98 Second Edition and Windows Millennium Edition (Me) do not include TweakUI. For additional information about this issue, refer to the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:
237920 TweakUI Not on Windows 98 SE or Windows Me CD-ROMs

Method 3: Edit the Registry

WARNING: If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.
  1. Start Registry Editor.
  2. Locate the following registry key:
  3. Modify the data value of the Link value to be 00 00 00 00.

    NOTE: For Windows 95, the Link value does not exist by default. Create the Link value as a Binary value, with a data value of 00 00 00 00.
  4. Restart the computer.
To implement this change for all users on a computer with user profiles enabled, modify the Link value in the following registry keys:

To restore the "Shortcut to" prefix, delete the Link value.

Article ID: 253212 - Last Review: 12/05/2015 18:30:32 - Revision: 1.4

Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition, Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition, Microsoft Windows 98 Standard Edition, Microsoft Windows 95

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