desktop icons

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by SCOR, Nov 28, 2007.

  1. SCOR macrumors newbie

    Nov 15, 2007
    just switched to mac. Have a very basic question. I downloaded Firefox. Now I have an icon on my desktop for Firefox. Everytime I quit Firefox, to re-open it, I have to click the icon and then a window opens. I then have to click on the window to launch Firefox.

    Is there any way to get rid of the desktop icon and not have to go through that process every time?

    I would like to just have a Firefox icon on the Dashboard only?

  2. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    Firefox downloads as a .dmg file...a disk image. When you open that up, the Firefox application is in there. Drag Firefox from there to your Applications folder. Then eject the disk image and delete the .dmg file.

    You can then drag Firefox from your Applications folder to the Dock in order to create a shortcut.

    See this guide for details...Firefox is an Application Bundle inside a Disk Image.
  3. ab2650 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2007
    I bet you're opening the disk image (.dmg file, think of it as a 'zip' file).

    So you've discovered that OS X and Windows operate very differently on how they install programs. Basically, "installing" on a Mac is like copying a file (ahem, program) to wherever you want to have it permanently, 99% of the time in "Applications".

    Here's my normal procedure for installing an app.
    1) Download the DMG file.
    2) Open the DMG file, and now you have a new icon on your desktop; Notice how it works like when you put in a CD or thumbdrive? This is the software equivalent of doing so.
    3) From the newly mounted "drive", copy the application to "Applications" on your hard drive.
    4) (optional) Drag it from Applications onto the dock to create a "shortcut" to opening the document.
    5) Drag the "mount" to the trash because you've copied what you need off it.
    6) Drag the DMG to the trash because you don't need that either.

    Edit: WildCowboy, you have faster fingers than I.
  4. Schroedinger macrumors regular


    Feb 12, 2004
    Baltimore, MD
    If I'm getting what you're saying, then you have what is probably a white mounted drive on the desktop, although it may have a firefox icon as its icon (so it doesn't look like a folder or mounted drive).

    When you open this, there is a window open with another icon inside for firefox.

    If this is the case then what I tell you now will apply to all future applications. Whenever you install an application it will work one of two ways. The easy way is an installer program that will just do it for you, likely asking you to select options as you go. The second way is you download a ".dmg" file, which when doubleclicked creates a mounted drive with the application inside of it.

    Take the icon of the application inside the window/folder/drive, and drag it to your applications folder, which is inside your Macintosh HD folder. It will take a second to copy over.

    Now, when you want to run the program, go to your applications folder and doubleclick it.

    What you called the "Dashboard" is properly called the Dock, if you mean that strip of icons at the bottom of the screen. To keep an application in there all the time, you can either drag the app from your applications folder to the dock (which will leave the original in the applications folder and create an alias on the dock) or you can start the program and once it appears in the dock, you can right click it (or control-click) and select the option "keep in dock" from the menu that pops up.

    Hope that covers it.

    good luck

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