Activate a Screen Saver Instantly

If you want to keep casual observers from seeing what you are working on when you step away from your computer, or you just want to enjoy your favourite screen savers without the wait, you can create a screen saver shortcut that allows you to activate a screen saver instantly.

Here's how to create a screensaver shortcut.

Part 1: Locate Screen Saver Files

Click "Start" and then click "Search" to open the "Search" window.


In the "Search Companion" area, click "All Files and folders".


Click the "More advanced options" arrow.


Ensure that there are ticks in the "Search system folders" and the "Search sub-folders" check boxes.


In the field labelled "All or part of the file name:" enter *.scr


In the drop-down list labelled "Look in:", choose the drive where system folders are likely to be stored (probably the "C" drive"). Your search should look like the screenshot shown below.


Click the "Search button" to begin searching for screensaver files.


When the search is completed, a list of available screen saver files should be displayed in the search window.




Part 2: Create a screensaver shortcut

Choose the screen saver you wish to use. You can double-click on a file to view a preview of the screen saver.


Right-click the chosen file and select "Send To" in the context menu.


In the "Send To" sub-menu, click "Desktop (create shortcut).

A shortcut icon for your chosen screen saver should now be displayed on the Windows XP desktop. Double-click on this icon any time you wish to activate your screensaver.

If you like, you can even create several screen saver shortcuts on the desktop so that you have a range of instant screen savers to choose from.

Notes:
You may be able to locate suitable screen saver files more quickly by using advanced search options or navigating directly to the files within Windows Explorer.

Activating an instant screen saver via a desktop shortcut will not change the default screen saver you have set in Display Properties. If you have not activated an instant screen saver via a shortcut, the default screen saver will still activate automatically after the amount of idle time specified in Display Properties.

Instant screen savers will not request a password on resume even if you have your normal screen saver configured to require a password in Display Properties.




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