Faster start menu search by not searching all files

Windows Vista start-menu has the ability to search for start menu items. This is a lot faster than browsing through the different folders in the start-menu. By default it will search through many different locations to find files/documents that matches your search, which can slow down the search.

Right click the Start-button and select Properties and on the Start Menu-tab click the Customize-button.

  • Search Communications - Should it search Windows Mail and Windows Contacts (Default - On)
  • Search Favorites and History - Should it search Internet Explorer bookmarks and visited web-sites (Default - On)
  • Search Files - If having many files in the My Documents folder consider changing it to “Don’t search for files” (Default - Search this user’s files)
Use keyword to launch application

Example if wanting to launch firefox, by just entering “ff”, then just create a shortcut in the Start-menu named ff that points to the Firefox application.

A more difficult approach is to register a pseudo application called “ff.exe” in the registry:

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \SOFTWARE \Microsoft \Windows \CurrentVersion \App Paths \ff.exe]
(Default) = “C:\Firefox\Firefox.exe”