How to Save Websites as Desktop Shortcuts for Quicker Access

We all have websites that we visit frequently at work. Getting access to them more quickly can often lead to a nice head-start and early wrap-up.

To facilitate quicker access to routinely-visited websites, you can add them as favorites so you don’t have to manually type out the URLs. You can also have them automatically open upon launching of the browser, which can be configured to launch with the operating system.

However, things are not always as easy as they sound, especially when your computer and browser are managed by your organization – meaning IT folks where you work.

For good reasons, IT folks often don’t want you to change what apps could start up with the operating system, or what websites could launch when the browser opens. They only want essential apps to start up with the operating system so that the computer is ready to use as soon as possible. The website that opens with the browser is often an intranet or your company’s website.

One thing commonly allowed on work computers is creating desktop shortcuts. What you can do is save these websites as desktop shortcuts, and then you can just double-click to open them like you would any desktop applications and files. Here’s how it can be done really easily. This works with the Chrome browser in both macOS and Windows 10.

How to Save Websites as Desktop Shortcuts

    • If you’ve already added the website as a favorite, just drag it from the Favorites bar and drop it on your desktop.
    • Otherwise, type the URL in the address bar, once it loads, drag on the View Site Information icon (the lock) and drop it on the desktop. Voilà!

Animated Demo - How to Save Websites as Desktop Shortcuts

Want to see one more browser trick? Check out this post

Use Chrome DevTools to Access Mobile Only Content on Desktop PC

Have you ever come across web content that can only be accessed in a mobile web browser, and if you tried to open the same URL in a desktop environment, you would get a prompt asking you to switch to a mobile device?

Being constrained to a mobile browser can be quite a hassle, especially when you have a 27″ screen right in front of you. If you’ve had headaches like this, today’s post might be able to help you. We say might because while the workaround is easy, it does not work for all situations.

Most desktop browsers can disguise themselves as mobile browsers. This can trick the web content designed for mobile to think it is being accessed on a mobile device.

Here’s how to access web content designed for mobile using the desktop version Chrome browser. This works in both macOS and Windows 10.

Using Chrome DevTools Mode to Access Mobile Only Content on Desktop

    1. Launch Chrome and open a new tab
    2. Press F12 to go into DevTools mode
    3. Click on the Device Toggle in the DevTools Dock Chrome DevTools Mode Dock - How to View Mobile Only Web Content on Desktop
    4. Type in the URL and you are good to go

Note you can have the browser be responsive and adapt to the content of the webpage, or have it appear as your favorite mobile device by selecting one from the “Responsive” list. With the “Rotate” button, you can also switch between portrait and landscape mode like how you would normally use a mobile device.

Like we have mentioned, this method does not work for all situations. You will only be able to get around the rules this way when the URL does not look too hard at whether it’s being processed by an actual mobile browser on a mobile device. Also, using the DevTools mode will feel strange as you will likely interact with the web content with a mouse instead of using the touch interface on mobile devices. Still, whenever possible, working with a full-blown desktop browser on a larger screen beats having to work with a smaller mobile device screen.

Interested in learning more browser tips and tricks? Check out this post on how to recover closed browser tabs.

How to Recover Closed Browser Tabs – Chrome and Safari on Mac and iPhone

How to Recover Closed Browser Tabs - Chrome, Safari, iOS 13, macOS CatalinaAccidentally closing a browser tab can be infuriating. Fortunately, the process is easy to undo for both Chrome and Safari. Here’s how you can recover closed Chrome or Safari browser tabs on a Mac or an iPhone.

Chrome

How to Recover A Closed Chrome Tab in macOS

To reopen a closed Chrome tab on a Mac, press Shift-Command-T (⇧⌘T) on the keyboard.

Recover Closed Chrome Tab on Mac Shift-Command-T

How to Recover A Closed Chrome Tab in iOS

To recover a closed Chrome tab on an iPhone, first, tap the More (More tab bar icon) button on the bottom right of the screen, and then tap Recent Tabs.

Recover Recent Chrome Tabs on iPhone

Safari

How to Recover A Closed Safari Tab in macOS

To reopen a closed Safari tab on a Mac, use the “undo” keyboard shortcut Command-Z (⌘Z).

Recover Closed Safari Tab on Mac Command-Z

How to Recover A Closed Safari Tab in iOS

To recover a closed Safari tab on an iPhone, tap the Tabs button on the bottom right of the screen, and then tap and hold on the Plus (Add navigation bar and tab bar icon) button in the middle of the screen to bring up the Recently Closed Tabs window. From there, you can pick any tab to recover.

Safari on iPhone Add New Tab Tap and Hold to Recover Closed Tabs

Do you find these tips on how to recover closed browser tabs helpful? If you would like to learn more Safari keyboard shortcuts, check out this post.

How to Extract Images from A .webarchive File Using Terminal

One way to extract content from a .webarchive file is through the Terminal app. The command to use is textutil convert -html.

Saving webpage as a .webarchive file in Safari

The Ariel Atom and Ariel Nomad are unique and beautiful cars. In fact, they are so unique and beautiful I wanted to use images of them for desktop wallpapers.

While there must be other places to look for the images, for me the most obvious choice was Ariel North America’s website. They make the cars, so if anyone’s got great photos it’s them.

A lot of the high-resolution images on the website are available for download and they make for amazing wallpapers too. You just simply need to click on them.

That’s the easy part.

The difficult part is getting those beautiful images the site uses in the banners. You can click on them all you want, but you just don’t get a download or save option.

By now I should mention I was using Safari on my Mac.

First, I tried to save the whole web page in hopes I could somehow maybe get a Zip file with the images in it. However, Safari only allows web pages to be saved in two formats, Page Source and Web Archive. The first one merely saves the source text, while the second one saves the source text as well as the images and other contents. I went with the second format and got a .webarchive file.

Saving Page with Safari Format One: Page SourceSaving Page with Safari Format One: Page Source
Saving Page with Safari Format Two: Web ArchiveSaving Page with Safari Format Two: Web Archive

Now the .webarchive file is not something that you can open using the stock Archive Utility app, or the commonly used third party app “The Unarchiver”.

Also, you might wonder if it helps to change the file’s extension name to .zip. Well, it doesn’t. 

Extracting content from .webarchive file

One way to extract the images from the .webarchive file is through the Terminal app. Here’s how.

1 – First, press Command and space to launch Spotlight, type in “Terminal” and hit Enter. That’ll open the Terminal app.

2 – Then type in this command without hitting Enter. Note there is a space at the end after “html”. 

textutil -convert html

3 – Lastly, drag the .webarchive folder into Terminal. Hit Enter and you’ll find all the extracted files in the same folder where the .webarchive file is located. Using Terminal Command to Extract Images from .webarchive FileOh, one more thing, did I mention I was using Safari to visit the site and download images? It turns out it’s much easier with Google’s Chrome.

With Chrome, you can simply save the web page using the “Webpage, Complete” format and that’ll give you a folder with all the page content in it, including the images.

 
 
Saving Web Page with Chrome

Lesson of the day?

If there’s anything that I learnt from this experience, it’s that Chrome is a better web browser. I mean, Safari and Edge are great too, especially when you use them to download Chrome.