Desktop organizers are a simple but brilliant way to make better use of your computer’s laptop.
If you’re the type who has dozens of folders and files scattered across your desktop, you might want to try a desktop organizer as a way to get more organized.
What are Desktop Organizers?
A desktop organizer is just an image file that you can set as a your desktop wallpaper.
The clever bit is that it is designed with spaces to help you organize folders and files. This is designed to help you organize them depending on what they are.
Some desktop organizers have the areas labelled so you can place the folders and files that fit those labels into those areas. Others may have unlabelled spaces so that you can group elements based on your own preferences.
Additionally, desktop organizers may also include co-ordinating icons that you can use to customize the appearance of folders and files on your desktop.
How to Set a Desktop Organizer
After downloading and unzipping your desktop organizer set, move the files to somewhere on your computer where you’re not going to accidentally delete them.
Right-click on an empty spot on your desktop and select Personalize or, if you’re using a touch-screen, go to Start, click Settings and then Personalization.
Click the Browse button, navigate to where you saved your desktop organizer and select the image file you want to use. We offer three different ratios.
If you don’t know what size your screen is, try the file for 16:9 first and ensure that the fit control is set to Fit. If it looks distorted, try the other sizes.
If there’s a Save Changes button, click it, otherwise just close the settings window.
Click the Apple menu at the top left of the screen and then System Preferences.
Click Desktop & Screen Saver and click for the Desktop pane if necessary.
If you saved your desktop organizer into a folder you’ve used here before, you should be able to select that folder and then select the organizer image.
If the organizer image is in a folder you’ve not used before for desktop images, click the + button below the list of folders and navigate to the folder containing the organizer image and choose that folder. You can then select the organizer image. At the time of writing Macs are more likely to use a 3:2 or 16:10 ratio image, so you may have to text which image looks best.
Turn Off Grid Alignment
This only applies to Windows.
On MacOS, when files or folders are saved to the desktop, they are positioned based on a grid, however, you can freely move icons anywhere, even partially overlapping other icons.
On Windows though, by default, when you move icons, they will always align to an invisible grid when you release them.
It’s easy to change this behavior so you can easily place icons based on the areas defined in the organizer image.
Right-click on an empty spot of your desktop and mouseover the View option. If you see a check mark visible beside the Align icons to grid option, click that option to disable it – the checkmark will disappear.
Now you should be able to drop icons anywhere and they won’t realign themselves to the invisible grid.
Using Desktop Icons
If your desktop organizer set includes desktop icons, you can use these to change the appearance of foldericons to further enhance your desktop appearance. Note that for Windows you will need to use the ico files, while on MacOS you can use the png files.
On Windows, you can change the icons used by folders.
Right click on a folder and click Properties.
Then click the Customize tab and click the Browse button. Navigate to your icon and select it.
- Click the OK button
- Click the Apply button
- Click the OK button
On a Mac, you can change folder and file icons.
In Finder, navigate to the icon PNG file you want to use and double-click it to open it in Preview. Go to Edit and Copy to add it to the pasteboard.
Right-click the file or folder you want to edit and click Get Info.
Click on the small icon at top left of the Info window and the press the Command+V keys to paste the image you copied as the new icon for the file or folder. Close the Info window.