Right-Click on a Short-Cut Getting Two Menu Entries


New Member
When right-clicking on a short-cut, i.e., a link to a file or a folder, it shows two same entries for Eraser context menu.
I am not quite sure since which version it has been behaving so, but it does with Eraser and at least, on Windows XP.

I have noticed this too, but have rather idly not done anything about it until now. I am currently using 2221 on a Vista machine, and 2175 on a Windows 7 machine. Both exhibit this behaviour, but version 6.0.7 on my XP machine does not.

Context menus for drives also show this behaviour, but with different entries for the two icons, which make it clear that one icon relates to the shortcut file and one to the drive itself. I assume that the same applies to file/folder shortcuts, but in that case it is virtually impossible for the user to distinguish between the two icons, as both have the same context menu entries. I'd guess that the upper icon relates to the shortcut file, and the lower one to the file/folder to which it points, but it is clearly unsafe to rely on that. It is almost certainly wise in these circumstances not to use context menu erasing with file/folder shortcuts on the builds that show more than one icon on the context menu.

Unfortunately, these issues do indicate that some further thought is needed on the whole context menu issue. It seems odd, to say the lease, to add a 'Secure move' option for drives for instance. I'm happy to post a ticket in Trac, but I'd like to know what Joel thinks about all this before I do so.

I knew about this a long time ago. The problem is that some people asked for shortcuts to be erasable. By default v5 didn't associate .lnk files with Eraser and hence shortcuts couldn't be erased. When I did do the association in v6, I got two calls to the context menu. I have no idea what is going on, but yes I agree this warrants more investigation. Perhaps eraserlover could open a Trac ticket.
I don't think that this is so much a bug (I could live with two entries), as a UI issue. As you add more and more functionality to the context menu, it becomes ever easier for the user to make a bad mistake. For me, the most important changes would be
  • have the menu entry specify what it does (Erase shortcut|file|folder etc.);
  • have the confirmation dialog say explicitly what is going to happen, e.g "Do you really want to erase bong.doc so that it cannot be recovered?" or "Do you really want to erase all the files on drive F:, so that they cannot be recovered?".

The latter point works for one file, but not for cases where multiple files are selected. Any refinements to suggest?
Joel said:
The latter point works for one file, but not for cases where multiple files are selected. Any refinements to suggest?
Point taken. How about

"Do you really want to erase [this shortcut|<file name>|<folder name>|these files|these folders|all the files on Drive X:] so that [it|they] cannot be recovered?"

This is somewhat similar to the way Explorer identifies files in its operations, and gives the user some chance of recognising what they are doing. To cater for all of the possible eventualities (e.g 1 folder plus more than one file), some of these options would need to be used in combination, but I hope you get the drift.

This has been fixed in r2225 (finally!)