How To Fix “The Item That This Shortcut Refers To Has Been Changed ” Error

You might frequently use the corresponding shortcut icons to open Windows applications. The object that this shortcut refers to has been modified or moved, though, and you receive an error notice when you click on it one day. What is the root source of this problem, and how do you fix it? The various reasons for this problem are as follows:

  • The target software has been taken out of its original folder or destroyed.
  • Malware or corrupt third-party apps are present on your device.
  • On your computer, there are corrupted or missing system files.
  • There are certain active system protection solutions that have blocked the path.

How To Fix “The Item That This Shortcut Refers To Has Been Changed” Error On Windows

1. Verify The Location Of The Target Program

Making sure the target program is in its original folder is the simplest method. So, the following is how to confirm the target app’s location:

Step 1: For desktop access, press Win + D. Alternately, go to the location where your shortcut file is stored.

Step 2: Choose Properties from the context menu of the shortcut file. We’ll examine the shortcut file in this case.

Step 3: Go to the Shortcut tab once you’re in the Properties window.

Step 4: Examine the file path displayed in the Target box.

Target box

Step 5: Verify that the file path listed in the “Target” field is accurate.

2. The Target App Needs To Be Repaired

Although you’ve confirmed the target app’s location, you still have problems. The target app is probably corrupted in this situation. Follow these instructions to repair the app to solve this issue:

Step 1: To see the Run command dialogue box, press Win + R.

Step 2: To open the Programs and Features window, enter appwiz.cpl and hit OK.

Step 3: Choose the desired program.


Step 4: The Repair option can be chosen by right-clicking the application.

3. Install The Target App Once Again

Sometimes fixing a damaged app won’t work. Therefore, you might also think about reinstalling the problematic program if the problem persists. How to correctly restore a problematic app on Windows is as follows:

Step 1: To see the Run command dialogue box, press Win + R.

Step 2: To open the Programs and Features window, enter appwiz.cpl and hit OK.

Step 3: Right-click on the desired software, then choose Uninstall.

Step 4: Restart your PC after performing the procedures outlined on the screen.

4. Schedule The Tuning And Optimization Of Your PC Using Advanced System Optimizer

Advanced System Optimizer

Your computer needs to be optimized and maintained periodically. Utilizing Advanced System Optimizer and scheduling a PC checkup automatically will help you achieve this. As a result, you won’t need a reminder to run the application.

The most effective program for clearing out PC clutter is Advanced System Optimizer. It offers a speedy, affordable solution to your Windows optimization needs. By erasing cookies and browsing history, encrypting private information to protect it from prying eyes, and permanently deleting data, this best PC cleaner may help you safeguard your privacy. Backup copies of crucial data, including movies, music files, photographs, and documents, are also made in addition to retrieving lost data.

5. Run A Disk Checker

In some cases, viruses or damaged system files are probably to blame for the problem. You could use the Check Disk (CHKDSK) utility to scan and fix such problems to solve the issue.

Step 1: In the search box on the Start menu, enter Command Prompt.

Step 2: Run as administrator by selecting with the right mouse click on the Best Match result.

Step 3: To launch a Check Disk scan, enter the command below and hit Enter.

chkdsk C: /f

Step 4: Replace the relevant drive letter with the C: command if you want to scan a different drive.

Step 5: Finally, wait for the procedure to be finished before restarting your computer.

6. Create New Shortcut File

An individual operating a Windows PC at a brown desk. Is the problem still not resolved? Perhaps the shortcut file itself is the problem. Therefore, deleting the old shortcut file and creating a new one is a simple solution. Here’s how to make a shortcut file for the application you want to use:

Step 1: For desktop access, press Win + D.

Step 2: Make a right click on a space on the desktop and choose New, followed by Shortcut from the context menu.

Step 3: Click Browse to start a search for apps.

Step 4: Click the OK button after selecting the desired app. Press Next after that.

Step 5: Finally, enter a name for this shortcut in the box provided and click Finish.



The Final Word On How to Fix “The Item That This Shortcut Refers to Has Been Changed ” Error on Windows

Your apps are easily accessible thanks to Windows’ shortcut icons. The creation of the shortcut files is simple, which is the nicest part. But when your shortcut icons suddenly stop working, it isn’t enjoyable. But if you experience “shortcut icon” problems, the techniques we’ve discussed should be helpful.

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