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I have some of my programs installed under D:\Program Files

I added this path in the "Indexing Options" and now when i type in the search box of start menu does show files from these folders, but they (*.exe) appear under Files subsection instead of Programs... which is further down and I have to press the down key so many times to reach them...

e.g., I have Notepad++ installed at D:\Program Files\npp\Notepad++.exe

Now I start keying "notepad" in the start menu's search box... it shows Notepad.exe under Programs and Notepad++.exe under Files

Any way to get Notepad++.exe under Programs or a shortcut to jump to Files section of the Start menu Search results?

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The 'Programs' section in the search results is for items that were found in the "All Programs" part of the start-menu.
I don't think that can be changed.

You can add a shortcut to that folder ["All Programs" or its sub-folders] for each program you want to appear in the programs results section.
The path for it [in Win7] is usually: C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs.
And you can also cut-&-paste directly to the start-menu (after clicking the all programs).

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BTW, when you install programs they usually put a shortcut to themselves in the start-menu, unless you choose not to where they give you the option. I think Notepad++ does this as-well, so the problem described probably stems from having chosen not to have that shortcut there in the first place. – Eran Feb 8 '11 at 13:29
I am using the zip package from NP++ and not the installer. – Nirmal Patel Feb 16 '11 at 13:06

That's determined from where the folder lies - Windows Search knows that .exe files in some specific folders (most notably the the default system "Program Files" folders). Windows Search pulls its folder list from an old friend I always seem to be recurring to - the environment variable %PATH%. It's basically a list of folders that Windows searches for programs - for instance, when you type "notepad" in a command-line window, it refers to that list to determine where the program is.

Since it's such an old and dear friend to the denizens of Super User, you can find many topics on how to deal with it - for instance, this one.

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Messing with the environment variables seems like a bit of an overkill for this. – Eran Feb 8 '11 at 13:21
I disagree. It takes five, maybe ten seconds and it's hardly "messing". – Tobias Plutat Feb 8 '11 at 13:48
Simply add D:/Program Files to %PATH% with setx PATH "%PATH%;D:/Program Files". – paradroid Feb 8 '11 at 14:13
I fail to see how this solves the question, it's not going to make any exe file in that path appear in the "Programs" part of the start-menu search results. – Eran Feb 8 '11 at 14:44
@Xenorose: Yes it does. I do it all the time with a directory of portable applications which I sync across all my computers and VMs. – paradroid Feb 8 '11 at 15:08

I can usually achieve this by dropping a shortcut to the program into the following directory:

C:\Users\$USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

whereby $USERNAME would of course be your windows username. This works for programs that seem to have bad installation methods (i.e. don't include themselves in the start menu search index).

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This is fairly straightforward. My "All Programs" menu consists of exactly two directories: Startup and shortcuts.

Within shortcuts, I have shortcuts to all of my programs, named the same way as I regularly refer to them.

When I want to start Notepad++, I simply type [Win], n, [Enter] (since Notepad++ is the application that I use most frequently that begins with the letter 'n', so it appears selected as soon as I type that character.)

It's very convenient. Try it out.

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