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How to make a printer shortcut in Windows 10

Quickly checking printer settings and the print tray just got a bit easier with these simple steps

While increasing digitisation of our workloads might have brought the dream of the paperless office closer than ever to reality, the fact remains that printing out physical documents is still something that most of us will need to do every so often.

Having a shortcut to your printer can save time, especially when you need to manage your print queue or hardware settings on a regular basis, and don’t want the hassle of selecting your printer through options menus each and every time you do so. Thankfully, creating a shortcut to your printer in Windows 10 is a relatively smooth and straightforward process.

First, open your control panel by pressing the start button and searching ‘control panel’, then clicking on the control panel application. 

Next, under ‘Hardware and Sound’ select ‘View devices and printers’. Once this is open, right click on your printer of choice and select ‘create shortcut’. You will be prompted with an option to create a desktop shortcut: select ‘yes’.

A right-click dialogue box with options for a printer shortcut

Once this is complete, you should have a shortcut for your printer right on your desktop, from which you can check the print tray and access its settings at any time. In the print tray, one can see all documents currently sent to the printer, as well as cancel documents from printing and reorder the print queue.

If you would like to rename the shortcut, simply right click on the icon and select ‘Rename’, or alternatively click twice on the name it has and then enter your own (not a double click — click on the name to select it, and then a second or two later click again to highlight the text itself).

For ease of access, the printer shortcut can also be added to the taskbar. To do this, simply right click on your newly created printer shortcut and select the option ‘add to taskbar’.

Additionally, the printer shortcut you created does not have to stay on your desktop. The icon, like any program shortcut, can be moved or copied to any folder on your computer. One way to do this is to open windows explorer and navigate to the folder of your choice. 

Next, move Windows Explorer so that the shortcut is not obscured behind it on the desktop (this may require pressing the maximise button to make explorer a smaller window, if you have it in full screen). Then simply drag the shortcut from the desktop into the folder of your choice.

Alternatively, you can click once on the printer shortcut to select it, and use the keyboard shortcut Control + C to add the printer shortcut to the clipboard. Then, navigate to the folder of your choice and press Control + V on your keyboard to paste it into the folder.

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