Wednesday, 3 June 2020

How to get a URL from a download link

Sometimes we forget that others may have not had the long experience in computing that we have, and have walked through the evolution of processes from DOS to the cloud. Over time, I have learned multiple ways to copy links, to start downloads from websites, and to go back and find download links when I was not able to get them from the address bar.

I had a question from a student who had clicked on a download link, and was then bewildered to find that the item opened in their browser showing the save location on their device, rather than the web address. This was a younger student, so was new to recording a download location for referencing source materials.

The things we don't know that others don't know! As a result, I put together some instructions, which I have added to the course's Moodle glossary (which I use as a FAQ bank). I thought I would also share these instructions on the web, just in case they proved useful for anyone else.

To quickly get a download address, on the website where you downloaded the file, follow these instructions: 

  • Hover your mouse cursor over the top of the link
  • Right click to bring up the right-click menu
  • Select "Copy link address" from the right-click menu
  • Go to your Word document and click where you want the URL to paste
  • Key Ctrl & V to paste the URL. 
Easy. But only when we know how.


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