James O'Neill's blog

Windows Platform, Virtualization and PowerShell with a little Photography for good measure.

A Windows 7 tip for (untidy) presenters

A Windows 7 tip for (untidy) presenters

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Do you have lots of icons on your windows desktop ? I do. And sometimes when I’m giving a presentation I think not only do they look untidy, there might be something given away by the icon and file name. The fix for that is to create a folder named “my stuff” or “everything else” and drag everything into it. Bringing the files back means rearranging them so I know where they are and there’s a few minutes wasted.

As of RC windows 7 has two options on the desktop’s “Context” menu (the right click menu as most people call it) under View

“Show desktop icons” and “show desktop gadgets”,

So if you have “Dastardly plans.docx” and a “Dastardly plans progress” gadget you can hide them in a couple of clicks and bring them back exactly as they were .

Obviously I don’t have anything like that in my screen shot :  I do like like the gadget which now comes with media center, but I don’t want to start presentations with a distraction on Dr Who.  I think media center needs a good“what’s on TV right-now gadget” the only ones I saw on Vista were flakey

Update: Someone in the audience for a presentation told me that this was not new in Windows 7. I told him it most certainly was. Then I fired up XP in a Virtual Machine and found the option is there - though the menu isn't as easy to use, and checked on Vista and it is there too. It's not unusual for me to forget when a feature was introduced, but I'd missed this one altogether. At least I did it in time to say to the audience I had got my facts wrong.

 

Comments
  • I didn't know about the option to hide the desktop icons - it will surely come in handy! I followed the same practice as you - I just created a folder called "Stuff" and be done with  it.

    But I thought I'd check if Vista had the same thing and, sure enough, it's there... Now I feel a bit silly :)

    Now all we need is a one-button 'Presentation mode' that hides away everything and temporarily sets your desktop background to the default blue color.

    Thanks for the tip!

  • but, you forgot to take to mind that the windows 7 desktop has a lot of new fetures as it is.  if need be, you could put such an option as a right-click option on the desktop viewer bar (i call it the transparency device).

  • I was reading through James' blog post and remembered that I wrote a script some time ago to show

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