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How to Fix Broken Shortcuts in Windows 10 Computers

One thing that considerably optimizes productivity on PCs and laptops is a shortcut. When you build the right shortcuts and put them in a practical spot on your device, your work can become much easier because you can access the files or programs the shortcuts link to much faster.


If your Windows 10 shortcuts aren’t functioning, this can lead to a lot of problems because you won’t be able to quickly access certain apps, which might cost you time while working. In this guide, we’ve provided instructions on what to do if you find that your shortcuts have been removed or broken on your device.

How to Fix Broken Shortcuts in Windows 10 Devices

Fixing Broken Shortcuts on Windows Devices

A shortcut is a link to a computer item (such a file, folder, drive, or program). As we stated above, they increase ease and speed considerably while working since they link you directly from your desktop to the files they access.

Now, several users have noticed issues with Windows 10 shortcuts following system updates. These reports claim that app shortcuts in Modern UI and Desktop mode both stopped working and failed to start the required programs.


Windows 10 typically provides troubleshooters with advice on how to handle these problems, however for some systems, these tools might just not be enough or to identify solutions.

We’ve thus provided the following fixes to help you get past broken shortcuts on your device.

Remove or Change your Antivirus Software


It’s possible that the antivirus program you use is to blame for these shortcut issues. We advise using a different antivirus program to resolve the problem.

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With another antivirus, you can get strong security services and minimal resource usage. Additionally, you are well protected while online, and malware risks are immediately identified.

Therefore, after uninstalling your antivirus software, you should install one that won’t interfere with Windows. To do this, pick from the top antivirus programs for Windows 10 devices that are available online.


Inspect the Applications Shortcut Directory

You can do this following these instructions:

  • Launch the Modern UI apps by opening the root folder.
  • Go to the following path to find the apps that are giving you problems: “C:UsersYourAcountAppDataLocalMicrosoftWindowsApplication Shortcuts”
  • Here, you’ll find all the applications you’ve installed on your computer in this folder, each in its own folder.
  • Open the folder that corresponds to the apps that are broken and find them.
  • You’ll find a shortcut there with the name “App”.
  • Delete the shortcut for the app, and repeat the process for each non-working app.
  • Reboot your system once you’re done, and everything should work as it should.

Keep in mind that desktop shortcuts frequently stop functioning as a result of a broken route to the program executable that they are supposed to launch. In such a case, the only thing left to do after uninstalling an application is to remove the shortcut.

Create the Shortcut Again

You have the choice of either creating a new shortcut or attempting to fix the path of your existing one if you’ve changed or upgraded an application and the associated shortcut is no longer functional.

Locating the executable file by going to the location where the software is installed (or moved) is the simplest method. After doing so, choose Create Shortcut from the context menu by right-clicking on it.

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If you are in a system folder, Explorer will immediately place the shortcut on your desktop, which you can then move wherever you choose.

Confirm that the Shortcut-Application Pathway is Correct


To do this, follow these instructions:

  • Choose Properties from the context menu when you have located the problematic shortcut.
  • The Target field, located under the Shortcut tab in the newly opened windows, is where the path to the program’s exe file should be.
  • If the path is incorrect, find the program’s executable and copy the path there, making sure to enclose it in quotation marks (example: program path).
  • To save changes, click Apply and OK.

Exit the HomeGroup

You can do this by following these instructions:

  • To access the control panel, use Windows Key + S.
  • You’ll be able to choose the Control Panel from the list.
  • Navigate to HomeGroup next.
  • Click on Leave the Homegroup to continue.
  • Click Finish when the confirmation message appears.

Clean Boot your Device


Another option you have is to carry out a clean boot on your device following the instructions we’ve provided below:

  • After pressing Windows Key + R, type msconfig.
  • Now click OK or press Enter.
  • Hide all Microsoft services by using the Services tab’s checkbox.
  • Click the Disable All button after that.
  • Tap on the Open Task Manager button under the Startup tab.
  • You’ll need to select Disable from the menu at this point by right-clicking the first item on the list.
  • For each entry on the list, repeat these procedures.
  • Once all startup programs have been turned off, return to the System Configuration window and select Apply and OK.
  • When your computer is prompted to restart, select the option to do so right away.
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At least one of all the procedures we’ve described above should help you fix broken shortcuts on your desktop.

In conclusion, we hope you’ve been able to use the answers in this guide to find a solution to the bothersome issue of not being able to use your desktop shortcuts.

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