Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Minimalist Windows Desktop

I wrote about this in the past. I don’t like cluttered Desktop. I don’t understand why windows users tuning their desktop are tyring to copy the Mac interface (way too cluttered for me).

The best way to have a clean Windows desktop (without files and icons everywhere) is to remove the possibility to get anything in it. That way, it stays simple all the time.

The best way to avoid a behavior (cluttering the desktop) is to design a desktop that cannot be cluttered. (see this blog post on this general topic: Willpower is overrated).

coming back to the main topic.

Here is my requirement:
- Minimal CPU and memory utilization. My PC needs to be lightning fast.
- Simple and clean environment (no distraction) and *impossible to clutter it*
- Possibility to let message or Post-it in the background

I found this very good blog post about windows explorer replacement: Five best destop customization tools

I was able to do this with those tiny and free applications:

1) Emerge Desktop - is a replacement windows "shell". It replaces the windows explorer. Part. Super lean, simple and flexible. You can remove everything from your desktop (task bars, icons, everything!).
2) Launchy – I need a way to launch quickly my applications. This is done with Launchy.
3) Vistaswitcher - Because I removed everything from my desktop, I need a way to switch between application more efficiently than with the normal Windows tools. Vistaswitcher is the best tool for this.
4) BGinfo – Possibility to add text on your backround image. 0 CPU utilization when it is done. Completely transparent. Just amazing.

Here is a screen capture (yes, there is nothing to see that is the main goal).



1 comment:

  1. Useful post! I've been looking for resources and guides on reducing desktop clutter, especially alternatives to the Windows shell, and was wondering: Have you found anyway to access the system tray (i.e. the various icons next to the clock on the taskbar) without using the taskbar? So far that's been my only obstacle.