Shortcut to Zoom

I use Chrome on Windows as my primary browser of choice, and one thing I find particularly annoying is joining Zoom meetings.

If I open a link to a meeting the tab opens up and then I have to click an additional confirmation dialog to get the meeting to actually open in Zoom. Once I've done that I still have to go back and close the Chrome tab. For meetings that I've got bookmarked, it's a lot of unnecessary clicking.

I decided to look into how hard it would be to create a desktop shortcut to a specific zoom meeting instead of a browser bookmark, and--as it turns out--it's actually pretty simple.

Batch File

My first attempt involved setting up a batch file. I created a plain text file and renamed it meeting.bat. I did some digging online and figured out the command to use was:

start "" "zoommtg://zoom.us/join?action=join&confno=#####&pwd=ABC123"

where ##### is replaced with the meeting ID, and ABC123 is replaced by the meeting password if one exists.

If you've got a Zoom meeting link, it will be formatted along the lines of https://zoom.us/j/123456, the 123456 at the end is the meeting ID.

Save the changes to the batch file and double-click to run.

Shortcut

I decided that I wanted to be able to customize the icon used for my Zoom shortcut and so I figured I'd look at using an actual windows shortcut.

I'm not overly familiar with how shortcuts work behind-the-scenes, but I knew that the "Create Shortcut" dialog could support URLs, so I decided to give it a go.

It turns out that it's even easier than a batch file.

  1. Right click in whatever folder you want to create the shortcut (for me I created mine on the desktop).
  2. Expand the "New" menu.
  3. Select "Shortcut", this will open the "Create Shortcut" dialog.
  4. When it asks "What item would you like to create a shortcut for?", paste in the URL you want to use (i.e. zoommtg://zoom.us/join?action=join&confno=123456).
  5. Click "Next".
  6. When it asks "What would you like to name the shortcut?", type the name of the meeting (i.e. "Standup Meeting").
  7. Click "Finish".

Double clicking the shortcut should open your meeting directly in zoom. You can also right click and change the shortcut properties to change the icon to whatever you'd like.

Trying it out

I only have a few recurring meetings, so I'm sure I'll still be closing lots of Zoom tabs, but I'm pretty certain that adding even a few of these to my start menu will help reduce just a bit more friction in my day.