Selecting Objects

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 3, 2015)

1

The Windows interface relies on a series of objects to represent either logical or physical items. For instance, there are objects that represent files, hardware devices, and other resources. The existence of an object within Windows is shown by an icon. This means that every icon you see in Windows represents an object, either logical or physical.

There may be times when you need to select an object. This is natural, because Windows requires that you select an object before you can act upon that object. Selecting a single object is easy—you simply point at it with the mouse pointer and then click on the left mouse button. The method that you use to select multiple objects may not be as evident, however.

There are two ways that you can select multiple objects. The first allows you to select all of the objects between a starting point and an ending point. For example, if you have a list of files shown on the screen, you can select a consecutive group of files by following these steps:

  1. Select the first object that you want in the group.
  2. Hold down the Shift key and select the last object that you want in the group.

The second method of selecting multiple objects is to select a noncontiguous group. To do so, you can use the following steps:

  1. Select the first object that you want in the group.
  2. Hold down the Ctrl key and select the next object that you want in the group.
  3. If necessary, hold down the Ctrl key and click on an object that you previously selected; it is then removed from the group.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you select all of the objects that you want in the group.

Once you select the objects that you want to act upon, you can then specify the action. For instance, you may want to move a group of files to another drive or you may want to delete a group of icons on the desktop. Each of these actions is more efficient when you take the action only once on an entire group of objects, rather than repeating the steps to perform the action on individual objects.

 This tip (10861) applies to Windows 7 and 8.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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What is nine minus 4?

2015-08-03 10:13:20

Jennifer Thomas

You can also drag over icons to create a 'select box'; all items covered between when you press the left mouse button and begin dragging to when you release the left mouse button are selected (you can see the select box borders as you drag). This is quite useful for selecting objects in the desktop or any other folder when they are displayed as icons.


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