locked
Changing default desktop RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi,

     

    How do I change my default desktop? I use Windows Vista Enterprise. I am a home user and have a standalone PC.

     

    Thanks in advance.

    Tuesday, September 16, 2008 3:24 PM

Answers

  • Hi

     

    The folder layout in Vista can be difficult to understand and a bit disconcerting at times.

     

    Here is a list of everywhere the Desktop folder should appear, in Windows Explorer, on a standard Vista 32bit installation.

    *These locations assume that 'C:' is the drive letter for the System Volume and 'username' is the user account name. Each user account on the system will have these same default folders.

     

    1. The default Desktop Folders:

     

    C:\Users\username\Desktop.

    This folder contains the folders and files that are displayed on the individual users desktop.

     

    C:\Users\Public\Desktop.

    This folder contains the folders and files that are displayed on every users desktop.

     

    C:\ProgramData\Desktop.

    This folder is a Junction Point  that is only present for backward compatibility. It does not contain any useable information and cannot be opened.

     

    2. Windows Explorer view:

     

    When you first open Windows Explorer, you will see your own user folders at the top of the Navigation Pane (Left side of the window).

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/WE_Folders1.jpg

     

    These folders are just a 'mirror' of the C:\Users\Username folders for the currently logged on user that are placed at the top of the navigation pane for convenient access.

     

    You will also see a 'Show Desktop' shortcut at the top of these 'mirrored' folders that you can select to see the actual content on your desktop in the right side pane.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/ShowDesktopLink.jpg

     

    The 'Public' folder is shown there because this folder is associated with every user account on the system.  Any folder, file, or shortcut placed in this folders Desktop folder will display on every users desktop. If you expand the 'Public' folder, you will see the 'Desktop' folder that has a 'custom icon' for that particular folder.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/PublicDesktopFolder.jpg

     

    The Username\Desktop folder also has a custom icon.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/UserDesktopFolder.jpg

     

    The ProgramData\Desktop folder has a custom icon that is the default icon for 'Junctions'.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/DesktopFolder_Junction.jpg

     

    Using this as a guide, let me know what you are seeing on your system.

     

    Hope this helps.


    If this post helps to resolve your issue, click the Mark as Answer or Helpful button at the top of this message.
    By marking a post as Answered, or Helpful you help others find the answer faster.

    Ronnie Vernon
    Microsoft MVP
    Windows Desktop Experience
    Wednesday, September 17, 2008 10:10 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hi

     

    Could you explain further exactly what you are trying to accomplish? Do you want to change the folder that holds all of the icons, etc, that display on the desktop or....?

     

     


    If this post helps to resolve your issue, click the Mark as Answer or Helpful button at the top of this message.
    By marking a post as Answered, or Helpful you help others find the answer faster.

    Ronnie Vernon
    Microsoft MVP
    Windows Desktop Experience
    Tuesday, September 16, 2008 7:32 PM
    Moderator
  • Hi,

    Thanks for your reply. Could you pls see my previous thread at: http://forums.microsoft.com/TechNet/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=3873873&SiteID=17? You'll find details of my problem there.

     

    Wednesday, September 17, 2008 5:06 AM
  • Hi

     

    The folder layout in Vista can be difficult to understand and a bit disconcerting at times.

     

    Here is a list of everywhere the Desktop folder should appear, in Windows Explorer, on a standard Vista 32bit installation.

    *These locations assume that 'C:' is the drive letter for the System Volume and 'username' is the user account name. Each user account on the system will have these same default folders.

     

    1. The default Desktop Folders:

     

    C:\Users\username\Desktop.

    This folder contains the folders and files that are displayed on the individual users desktop.

     

    C:\Users\Public\Desktop.

    This folder contains the folders and files that are displayed on every users desktop.

     

    C:\ProgramData\Desktop.

    This folder is a Junction Point  that is only present for backward compatibility. It does not contain any useable information and cannot be opened.

     

    2. Windows Explorer view:

     

    When you first open Windows Explorer, you will see your own user folders at the top of the Navigation Pane (Left side of the window).

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/WE_Folders1.jpg

     

    These folders are just a 'mirror' of the C:\Users\Username folders for the currently logged on user that are placed at the top of the navigation pane for convenient access.

     

    You will also see a 'Show Desktop' shortcut at the top of these 'mirrored' folders that you can select to see the actual content on your desktop in the right side pane.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/ShowDesktopLink.jpg

     

    The 'Public' folder is shown there because this folder is associated with every user account on the system.  Any folder, file, or shortcut placed in this folders Desktop folder will display on every users desktop. If you expand the 'Public' folder, you will see the 'Desktop' folder that has a 'custom icon' for that particular folder.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/PublicDesktopFolder.jpg

     

    The Username\Desktop folder also has a custom icon.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/UserDesktopFolder.jpg

     

    The ProgramData\Desktop folder has a custom icon that is the default icon for 'Junctions'.

    http://i196.photobucket.com/albums/aa86/rvmv/DesktopFolder_Junction.jpg

     

    Using this as a guide, let me know what you are seeing on your system.

     

    Hope this helps.


    If this post helps to resolve your issue, click the Mark as Answer or Helpful button at the top of this message.
    By marking a post as Answered, or Helpful you help others find the answer faster.

    Ronnie Vernon
    Microsoft MVP
    Windows Desktop Experience
    Wednesday, September 17, 2008 10:10 PM
    Moderator