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I like it clean and simple. I hide my dock and use quicksilver (though I am

new to QS) when I can. I generally get backgrounds from Hubble Telescope in

high resolution and edit them down to a nice size. I change backgrounds

once a month or so. All my downloads are files directly to keep clutter off

the desktop.


The current image is Generations of Star Formation in the Large Magellanic


Here is my desktop that currently resides on my iMac.


I do whatever I can to have make my desktop as simple as possible. I can't concentrate on my design work when there are 20 icons all over my screen. The discovery of Quicksilver was heaven sent! Not only did it allow me to not have as many icons on my desktop, but it also allowed me to scale down on my dock as well.


The digg widget is a MUST HAVE. It saves me from refreshing their website every 5 minutes!


I prefer the ultra clean look, and try to have rocketdock be the only thing on my desktop. If needed, I use my desktop as a sort of urgent inbox where I can put everything that needs to be taken care of within the next few days. I have both my desktop and laptop set up as exact copies of each other, which makes it very easy to switch between the two quickly.

I use a "desktop items" folder with a custom icon (from a site featured on Lifehacker). Believe it or not, it's not complete chaos in there, either. In it I keep a "whiteboard" folder with current stuff, and a "working on" folder containing folders for my current projects. My (admittedly chaotic) Downloads folder is in there, though.


The background comes from the default Mac "Black & White" folder in System Preferences->Desktop & Screen Saver.

OS: Fedora 7, fully up to date

WM: wmi (used to be at, but it is no longer maintained)


wmi is one of the ``rodent free'' window managers, aka one you do not

need to use the mouse to use. It was written to support programers, and

they do not like the mouse. :)

OS: Fedora 7, fully up to date

WM: wmi (used to be at, but it is no longer maintained)


wmi is one of the ``rodent free'' window managers, aka one you do not

need to use the mouse to use. It was written to support programers, and

they do not like the mouse. :)


My normal day-to-day tools include mutt (Mail), (Todo List

manager), rxvt (Terminal), and screen (window multiplexor).

My normal day-to-day tools include mutt (Mail), (Todo List

manager), rxvt (Terminal), and screen (window multiplexor).

Hello Lifehackers. So here's my contribution to the desktops showing.

This is my Windows XP box I use at work:


- First of all, using a UxTheme.dll patcher I was able to use a

third-party .msstyle theme from Deviant Art called Royale Vista VS



- It goes nice with my Rocket Dock (Skin: Vista Inspirat). It sits

hidden on the left of my screen and contains my most used apps.


- Also matches the Launchy black skin. =) As you can see I like lots

of ways for accessing my programs. For my most used apps I prefer

clicking on the dock and for something more obscure I use Launchy. It

has been a while since I pressed the start button. =P Actually I would

ditch the task bar altogether but I like to switch windows through it.


- My wallpaper changes daily (and also gets the handy calendar drawn

on it) using John's Background Switcher

( It can

update from your local files or it can download photos from flickr

with tags specified by you.

One of my tags is Japan. They make good wallpapers =)


Well that's pretty much it, I like it simple. =)


BTW, my Windows XP is in Portuguese as you may have noticed. =) I'm brazilian.

My desktop is really basic and clean. I went with a simple but different visual theme because the default is boring.

That dock is much like the Mac OS X dock. I can minimize my windows to it and when I went them back, I simply click on the window thats minimized. I find that the dock is better in productivity.


As you can see, there is no icons on the desktop, as everything is in that dock. I chose a pleasent looking wallpaper to keep my mind set in good spirites. Thanks.

Nothing fancy. I'm using Mac OSX (Tiger) on a MacBook Pro. Since I'm

writing a book, I'm using a desktop image of a library. It gives me a

nice, quiet, studious feeling. Got it from VladStudio:


However, I change it a lot.


I've replaced all of the replaceable dock icons with ones I prefer,

gathered from various places on the web. Seashells, obviously, I

like. Someone once asked me how I remember what they all are, but

this never seems to be a problem - the shapes have obscure meanings

for me, I guess. I've kept the original icons for Mori, a notes

program I'm using for my book, and the Dictionary feature that comes

with Mac OSX, mostly because I'm only using them a lot on this

current project. I've yet to figure out how to replace the Finder

icon. The dock includes:






Address Book




Delicious Library





Grab (to take the picture)


I got rid of all of the desktop icons and the Windows taskbar to

clean up my desktop and make it look nicer and run faster. I use the

Stardock ObjectDock at the bottom of the screen for easy access to

everything I use on a regular basis. The icon size is small enough that

it fits over the status bar when I'm in Firefox, so it doesn't get in

the way of whatever I'm doing, but large enough that I can see them clearly.

The icons, from left to right, are as follows:



Local weather (I can mouse over the icon to get weather predictions for

the next five days.)

Magic Workstation

Wordpad (I don't use Microsoft Office. For most things, I use Google

Documents, but I keep a copy of important things in Wordpad in case my

internet connection goes down.)

Recycle Bin

Show Desktop button (I rarely use this, but it is occasionally useful,

and the recycle bin looks silly sitting by itself.)

To the right of those icons are any programs that are currently


Hey! This is a Windows XP desktop. Here's what I did:


1) Hid all my desktop icons. You can do that by right-clicking your desktop, going to "Arrange Icons By", and unchecking the "Show Desktop Icons" option. They're still accessible via Windows Explorer, if I ever need them. But they don't clutter up my screen any more.


2) Installed Yahoo! Widgets. I prefer to do RSS and todo lists and that sort of thing in a browser, and I don't want my time sapped by anything else, so the only widgets I really needed were a digital clock and a calendar.


3) Installed RKLauncher, which is a rough clone of MacOS's dock for Windows users like myself. I keep all my most commonly used programs here, where I can get to them easily. I like it on the top-right side of my screen, but it can go anywhere.


4) Set the taskbar to auto-hide. Technically, RKLauncher hides the taskbar if you tell it to, but it tends to pop up from time to time.


5) Installed Launchy, which is the amazing application launcher in the center of the screen.


6) Started using Alt-Tab exclusively for switching back and forth between different windows. There are various alt-tab replacements out there, but I don't really like any of them personally, so I stick with the old-fashioned one.


7) Downloaded the wallpaper from Which is where I get most of my wallpapers these days.

Doyle's PA under restoration. Portland, Oregon

This is my current laptop desktop. My desktop desktop is the same, except it uses a rolling cloud Dreamscene background. Taskbar is on autohide docked at the top of the screen.


Obvioiusly I'm using a Lifehacker (and personal) favorite, RocketDock and one of my favorite backgrounds of Lady Croft.


Simple, but effective.

Two screenshots here


the first is of my beautiful child, my MediaMonkey music player

-RocketDock is visible, but I also use Dexpot to give me more depth

-also use a little program named Hawkeye that lets me set where the application windows expand to, and also give my taskbar transparency


The second is a screen I frequently use that relaxes me

-Rainlender2 is visible and soothing

-RocketDock should be onscreen, but I think I took the cap with something other than fn + prt sc

I have switched on the "Auto hide" option in the taskbasr properties.


I have selected an image for wallpaper.


Also, I switched off the "Auto Arrange" option in the context menu, which appears when right click on the desktop. After doing this I have moved my icons to the middle of the desktop.


I have removed My documents, Internet Explorer, My Computer and My Network places icons by uncheking the options available in the dialog box, which is appears when selecting Customize desktop option in the Desktop tab in the display properties.


That's it. I got a clutter free smooth desktop. Find attached JPEG image along with this mail.

My entry for the Lifehacker Desktop Show & Tell. My desktop strategy is to have a very clean visual style, but to also have as much functionality as possible at my fingertips (using native Windows widgets/toolbars whenever possible).

I'm pretty new to the Mac scene having received my first Apple

computer a little over a month ago, and when I decided that my desktop

needed some fine tuning, I turned to Lifehacker for help. I have yet

to be disappointed. This is what I did:


- My dock contains applications that I use on a regular basis. I

dragged the "Applications" folder to the dock to get a Windows style

Start Menu so I can see which applications I have installed. I usually

just use Quicksilver to launch applications. I also removed the fugly

gray background and replaced it with a transparent one with ClearDock.


- In the menu bar (upper right corner), I removed the regular Date and

Time and replaced it with the one iStat menus offers, as I now have a

little calendar that shows me the date as well. I also added memory

and CPU menus. Additionally, I removed the Searchlight icon, as I

never used it. I removed it by renaming Search.bundle in Macintosh

HD/System/Library/Core Services/ (caution: you probably need to name

it back again when upgrading to the next os version).


- On the right, I have several applications that I use often but not

as much as the ones in my Dock. They also serve as a subtle reminder

that I am supposed to be doing schoolwork :)


- I have yet to find a decent and complete icon set, but I did change

several system icons with LiteIcon.


- Wallpaper: I usually change it all the time but I kind of like this

cow - so I don't do it anymore. What can I say :)

This is my first serious entry for LDST. Full Size Image here


The image is a composite of 3 screenshots of my "multi-desktop" desktop (win XP). From the top: desktop 1, desktop 2, and desktop 1 and 2 in 3D mode. There are actually 4 desktops, but I mostly use just 1 and 2.


There are quite of few really cool and *free* programs in these screenshots which I have included atop the image itself as notes. So, if you like something on my desktop, you know where to find it. :)


wallpapers are from dffrnt.


*Software and Wallpaper downloads for Desktop Customization:

01. click here for the wallpaper on desktop 1

02. click here for the wallpaper on desktop 2

03. click here to download Styler XP

04. click here to download Mac OS X visual style by NeoDesktop (via deviantArt)

05. click here to download Mac OS X Styler Toolbar by Myssynen (via deviantArt)

06. click here to download QTTabBar ( requires .NET2.0 )

07. click here to download FindeXer

08. click here to download Sizer

09. click here to download the RocketDock skin MaxBlack

10. click here to download RocketDock

11. click here to download Enso Launcher


Thanks Lifehacker. My account there has "comments" disabled so I have to post it here. Hope the desktop showcase is a help to people than just a visual treat. :)

Running windows Vista Business


Sidebar gadgets are - Weather, Calender, iStat wireless, battery and combo. Notes, App launcher and Volume Control.


Messenger program - Pidgin


Wall by - Frank Widmann

I've gone through multiple configurations, from classic Windows (win 2000 style), to uber-complex visual styles, to black or gray wallpapers and back but my current configuration has survived for almost two years now and I think I've found the sweet spot.

I'm using Blackbox for Windows ( instead of the Explorer shell because of three main things:

1. it never crashed (unlike Explorer), which is a consequence of its tiny resource requirement

2. it's VERY customizable (all settings stored in .rc files and plugins are available which one can also edit)

3. it's much closer to the "everything must be within two clicks" goal.

As you can see, I've edited the menu (opens by right-clicking on the desktop or pressing the Win key) so I can have instant access to Total Commander (I hardly ever use Windows Explorer), Firefox and Thunderbird. And everything from my custom quick menu (similar to Quick Launch or a dock) to the Windows Startmenu, file tree and Control Panel is two clicks away. The menu can also be navigated using the keyboard, of course. I also use a Quick Launch plugin (show on the top-left on the second display), though rarely, and a tray plugin for Blackbox (on the top-right side, not shown; they both autohide). I've also edited the style so it would go with the Visual Style I'm using:


The second important element is the Nano Visual Style (, the Imrik flavor, along with a matching skin for Winamp. I'm a graphic designer so aesthetics are important to me. I think I've tried all the famous visual styles and this one stuck. It's smooth, simple, clear and pretty.


One quick mention about Winamp: I hardly ever have any Winamp windows showing, except for the Jump To File dialog when I'm searching for a song and building up a queue. I've mapped my keyboard's multimedia keys like so: the playback keys are obviously used for playback, as the volume up/down keys are for volume. The Browser Back key opens the Jump To File dialog, Browser Forward toggles the playlist, Stop toggles Shuffle, Refresh toggles the main window, Search copies the current file's path to clipboard and Favorites (or whatever the next button is) toggles the EQ window. It's much faster than clicking your way through Winamp's interface, trust me.


As you might have noticed I use Rainlendar, synchronized with GCal (and so is Thunderbird's Lightning calendar) and with a nice transparent skin (Lucid, large, white days).


The main (left side) display is a 19'' CRT and it's usually occupied by my main "task", be it Photoshop, Flash, Firefox, Total Commander, VLC or mplayer. I use the second display for Photoshop and Flash's palettes, IM conversations, uTorrent, comparing websites on different browsers, Notepad++ and such. I have an Nvidia display adapter and its drivers allow me to set windows to always on top, collapse them to the titlebar, make them transparent, stick them to one display and quickly send them from one display to another (all assignable to hotkeys). It also supports virtual desktops, so you might want to look into that as an alternative to other desktop management apps.


Sorry for the long description but I guess it's more than meets the eye. Thanks and keep up the good work!

As you can probably tell, I'm a bit of a minimalist. On the desktop I have my three main icons: "dL" being my downloads folder, "Z" being my second hard drive, and "T" being the trash bin.


On the taskbar, from left to right, I have My Documents folder (duh!), My Computer, Worms Armageddon (still an awesome game), Nero, CDBurnerXP, IsoBuster, Paint.NET, Virtual CDROM, Intervideo Home Theater (spicifically used for my Wii), Notepad++, Pidgin, VLC, Winamp, utorrent, Firefox (my back up browser), and Opera (my main browser).


The green style was set using TuneUp Styler and my desktop background is an incredible painting of Samus done by "=transfuse" on



Visual Style: Gaia

Wallpaper: Good Vibrations by liqachu

Media Player: Foobar with FofR skin

Misc: Yahoo Widgets

My desktop alone is very sparse it consists of whatever wallpaper I like and I tend to change it every week or so, right now it’s one I got off of deviantart by manicho. The weather widget in the upper left corner is the widescape weather widget for Yahoo! Widget Engine. The second screenshot shows what is hidden on the desktop which is merely the windows start bar and an OSX like dock called Rocketdock. The icons from left to right are: My Computer, My Documents, Pidgin, Thunderbird, Firefox, IE 7, Google Earth, Encarta, Command and Conquer 3, iTunes, Joost, Media Center, Miro, VLC, WMP 11, Zune, Lightroom, Picasa, Photoshop CS3, Open Office Writer, Word 2007, Outlook 2007, and Recycle Bin. All of the icons shown have been found around the internet, but mostly from deviantart. My system tray has Miro, Thunderbird, Pidgin, Outlook, Sync Center, ATI Remote Wonder, NOD32 Antivirus, and Yahoo Widget Engine. So while I have a very clean desktop, I still have quick access to my most important programs easily and without any clutter whatsoever.

I don't remember where I got the desktop background from, sorrry. I like it a lot though!

This is my desktop wallpaper. Based on this historical poster. Anyone interested in acquiring said desktop should contact me through Flickr. I'm happy to send out a copy. I find it especially useful during exam time, like now.


DUE TO VOLUME OF REQUESTS, if you want a copy, send an email to with the resolution of your monitor. Thanks!


Desktop image © 2008 visual_dichotomy. No stealing without permission!

-1 is the normal desktop. There's my desktop terminal, that you guys pointed out how to do a while back, showing my todo list, managed by todo.txt. Useful stuff on taskbar (including geyes, just for fun). Nautilus desktop, from .


-widgets is with my widgets showing (sample notes included!).


-zoomedout is the expo mode. That, as well as the widget layer (the actual widgets are screenlets, from ) are done by compiz fusion. Compiz also has a cube mode, but I use that rarely, preferring to use the expo mode.

You may notice that the first desktop is the only one with the terminal. I have a few icons on my desktop, but I keep them behind the terminal, swapping to another desktop when I need them, having a clean desktop otherwise.

My desktop is a fairly simple compilation, tweaked throughout the years to meet my current needs.


I run Windows XP: MCE 2002 with two monitors (17" LCD and 20.1"Widescreen); the left side is 1280x1024 and the right is 1680x1050.




The theme I use is Royale Noir, attained from


My Google Sidebar includes the following (top to bottom): Weather Gadget, Scratch Pad, Photo Gadget, GEyes, Net Meter, Recycle Bin, and Wikipedia and Google Search bars.


I do not use any dual-monitor programs to stretch my window's task bar because I primarily use my right LCD screen for watching movies or gaming.

The only thing windows ever gets right, The backgrounds.



Media Player - Windows Media Player 11

Calendar - Rainlendar -

Customized Windows, Start Menu - Windows Blinds -

Cursor - CursorXP -

Dock - ObjectDock -

Custom Icons - Icon Packager / Icon Developer -




WindowsBlinds -

Rainlendar -

CursorXP -

Windows Media Player - 2.wmz

ObjectDock -

Icon Packager -


I use Stardock's theme manager to organize everything except the rainlendar skin, although you can manage each program individually.


Everything is free, to the best of my knowledge. Some of the stardock apps have limitations, but unless you're really nit picky you don't need the shareware versions anyways.


Wallpaper is from

Desktop is pretty simple. I got a simple Vista Sidebar gadget in the upper right to show resource usage, on the bottom center, another Sidebar gadget by the self explaining name of "App Launcher" and it houses all the programs that I'll use, keeping my desktop clean, as well as the start menu. The basic taskbar docked WMP11 and a self created wallpaper to rememind me in the middle of stressful projects that everything will be better.


Not much to see, but this is my little space in the computer world.

My desktop is pretty simple, I'm running ubuntu feisty fawn,


coexisting with Windows XP


I'm a civil engineer and I depend on software that runs on windows, but

my love goes to the penguin.

Vista Laptop, Simplistic, or at least and attempt at it.


Only icons on the desktop are ones i need, and cant live without.


and tons of info with my sidebar with just a glance.


Not too many mods/ visual additions, since its a new addition to my computer family.


personally i love the argyle background... :P


Compaq 15.4 Widescreen Presario V6000

AMD Turion64 1.6GHz X2

1024 MBs Ram

100 Gb HDD

Window borders: StormCloud

Icons: Dropline Neu!

Dock: Avant Window Navigator

Widgets: gDesklets

Wallpaper: Can't remember for the life of me where I got it.

my new desktop. she has one of the most amazing smiles. the whole happiness thing just ups the sexyness so much more.

This sits in my home office, on the right.

*** The scribbled notes are *on* the desktop, they're not explanations - it's a Tablet PC. ***


A screenshot of the desktop of Moog, my Toshiba M200 Tablet PC, for the Lifehacker Desktop Show and Tell pool.


It's a bit on the self-referential side, because I only got the idea to do this after browsing the other desktops in the group.


It's using the internal LCD panel, 1400x1050 resolution.


See notes for most info.


Main software used...


Windows XP Tablet PC Editon 2005 - catchy name. The only choice on a tablet, really. I'm a wannabe geek, so I really *want* to be a Linux user, but Windows does work pretty nicely, really.


Outlook - 2003 at the moment, but I may end up switching back to 2002 at some point, as it's all I'm really licensed for these days. Running NewsGator at the moment to put all my RSS feeds in there too, but I usually end up switching back to Bloglines pretty soon after trying anything else.


Internet Explorer. I know, I can't be *any* kind of geek if I'm not using Firefox, but 1.5 was using over 370Mb of physical RAM - I've only *got* 512Mb, and it wouldn't give any of it up, so I've had to dump it again. Shame, really, it had just got going nicely on the tablet, with the new extension for tablets.


(Screenshot was converted and compressed with The GIMP - I use it for all my photo editing.)




The idea is this - keep anything relating to an active project or action (GTD style stuff) in the Outlook task for it, as attachments. When starting to work on something, drag the attachments out into one of the three numbered areas in the middle, and work on them. When done for the moment, drag 'em back to where they came from and erase any scribbled notes relating to them.


How well does it work? Dunno - only just set it up, not tried it yet.

My WinXP Pro desktop at work, wallpaper by BPGStudios

Work Windows XP computer desktop, annotated.


I'm intensely interested in what people's computer desktops look like - which shortcuts they've deemed important enough to show all the time, how they arrange icons, what's on their docks, etc. I'm starting a new Flickr tag, desktopshowandtell, to use Flickr's awesome annotation to get people to show and tell me what their desktops look like and what software they use.


Take a screenshot of yours, tag it desktopshowandtell, and let me know in the comments.

The desktop is managed with the great VirtueDesktop application (for now), with each virtual space relevant to a certain working context -- that is, I tend to stay on the same screen while performing actions of similar context. In order to quickly switch between applications I use the indispensable Quicksilver. The desktop image is also called Snowblind and is from the talented Kenny Lindstrom at

Openbox WM/DE, Tint2 panel, Conky system monitor as you can see I don't like clutter on my desktop. My "start menu" is accessed by right clicking on my desktop or anywhere on the panel.

I have a fairly 'empty' desktop but that's the way I like my desktop.


1 : I'm a person who likes to make notes about everything, so I use a program called "StickyPad", which does the thing for me.

2 : With the program "Samurize" I can make my desktop more interactive. It contains disk usage meters, clocks, memory meters etc. etc. It's also possible to script programs for it, so you can make your desktop much snazzier than it was. On my desktop, I'm displaying album art from the current song I listen and have two disk usage meter next to it. fairly simple (took me 1 minute to get it like this)

3 : I simply don't like the windows clock, so I use the program "Clock Tray Skins" to suit it to my needs.


My Windows desktop, with a picture from boneidle. ObjectDock emulates the OSX dock.

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