Drag and Drop

by Wayne Maples [Published on 20 April 2004 / Last Updated on 20 April 2004]

Windows NT / Windows 2000 / Windows XP supports drag and drop functionality on the desktop and within Explorer.

  • Cancel drag and drop operation : press Esc
  • Move an object : use mouse button 1 (MB1) (normally left-click drag) to drag the object from one folder to another on the same drive. Use Shift + MB1 and drag to force a move.
  • Copy an object : use MB1 to drag the object from one folder to another on a different drive. Use Ctrl + MB1 and drag to force a copy.
  • Drag from application to application : use MB1 to drag an object, hold it over the tray button for the application until the application window is opened in the forefront allowing you to continue without rearranging the open windows.
  • Drag and Drop Dialog Box : use MB2 (normally right-click drag) to drag an object from one folder to another. From the drag and drop dialog box, select whether to
    • Move Here
    • Copy Here
    • Create Shortcut(s) Here
    • Cancel
  • Drag and print : assuming you have created a printer shortcut on the desktop, you can print to it by dragging a file and dropping it onto the printer shortcut icon.
  • Drag to Run Dialog : drop a program on Run and it will start up. Drop a file and if it has a program association, the program will start up with the file opened.
  • Drag a group : To drag and drop a group of objects, hold down the Shift key and select the object you want to operate on as a group.

When you left-drag a file or folder, pay attention to the icon on what is being dragged:

  • a small plus sign on the icon means the file or folder will be copied
  • a small curving arrow means a shortcut will be made
  • no change on the icon means the object will be moved

The Undo command works if you deleted or moved or copied it to somewhere by mistake: either click Edit | Undo or Ctrl-Z

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