Lifestyle Technology Trends

DESKTOP MANAGEMENT: How to manage the Desktop Clutter

Okay. So image on the left might be too much. But you get where we are heading.

So desktops, traditionally were designed to give you quick access to all the important files and documents that you need frequently. Very soon (and specially if you work in IT) everything became important. And hence began an era of messy desktops. It may not bother a significant bunch of individuals as much, but it kills me inside every time I come across such a chaos. In this post we discuss the very basics of desktop management.

On psychological front, we feel much less in control if our surroundings lack cleanliness. No body likes to live in a mess. How could one tolerate mess on something that is going to stay with you for hours per day.

With WFH kicking in now, more than often we find ourselves in a situation where we have to share screens. And with that kind of desktop? It is like showing up in your pyjamas and flip flops to a ball dance.

I can go on and on with such examples, but hopefully, you got the idea. I got an inspiration of writing this post when a couple of my colleagues complemented me on the way my desktop looks during a teams call. That is when I realized, desktop management is not a standard practice and it is highly uncommon to keep your desktop clean. Hence, here are a few of ways that help you out.

Disclaimer: This strategy works for me pretty well and I have been practicing this for a while now. You may devise your own methods to maintain desktop hygiene, but at least begin somewhere.

Section 1:

This is my least used real estate of the desktop. It has app shortcuts which if I were the admin of my work laptop, I would’ve got rid of. The most used apps are already pinned to my taskbar and hence this section is something I can completely ignore.

Now, I often get into a situation wherein a download an attachment for quick reference and may discard it later. All such attachments get appended in this section and I don’t have to do a scavenger hunt on my desktop to find them.

Section 2:

These excels are my WIP files. I have started working on them and they need some additional work/ follow ups to be completed. I safely keep them right in front of my eyes so that I don’t have to rely on reminders to complete the tasks assigned to me.

section 3:

These are the excels which I need to start working on. Soon, something would move out of the section 2 and some files from section 3 will take its place. That is how I also get the visibility of the task pipeline and can plan my time better.

section 4:

These are the excels I refer to on a daily basis for some kind of analysis. So as soon as some attachment would move to section 1, I would have to do some excel operation on it using excel from section 4. Again, everything without scouting other areas in my laptop.

section 5:

This is my projects section. All the key projects I am working on are listed here. Creating folders and sub folders is the key here. This serves as a one stop spot while preparing for my monthly reviews. I have a much better visibility of the things I am involved in and sets an accountability on my part.


Okay, so I don’t have OCD. Its just small things like this makes me feel empowered. Desktop management somehow makes me think I am able to add a pinch of order to this cluttered world anyway. If you have done something like this in the past, or may be, just relate to this post. Do comment below and let me know. Lets make desktops great again.

Until Next Time..

A techno manager by profession and a hardcore geek at heart. I love to poke my nose into tasks where other usually gave up on. My hobbies include, reading about latest trends in tech industry, playing guitar and yes, memes!

One thought on “DESKTOP MANAGEMENT: How to manage the Desktop Clutter

  1. I always wonder how do folks actually survive with a cluttered desktop! My desktop has icons disabled so it’s absolutely clean, I’m more of a Win+R user 😉 Loved the section concept, quite helpful I must say.

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