This happens to me often. I take screenshots of free images on the internet and insert them into Illustrator files. But if I save, close, and reopen the files, the screenshots have to be present on my desktop in order for this error message not to occur, even though the screenshots are there in the Illustrator files when I save them. What am I missing? It wouldn't be reasonable for Adobe to expect us to keep all of the images that we want to use in our Illustrator files stored on our desktop forever.
Is there a way to tell Illustrator to search for the linked files within a specific folder? That way I could save all of the screenshots that I use in my Illustrator files within that folder.
Is there a setting in Illustrator that will automatically save the screenshots within the Illustrator files, causing them to no longer be "linked"?
EDIT: As Cai mentioned, the solution was simply to embed the files after importing / placing them.