Microsoft Desktops is a free program by Sysinternals that adds virtual desktop capabilities to PCs running the Microsoft Windows operating system.
Mark Russinovich and his Sysinternals applications have an excellent reputation among IT professionals. The newest application by Sysinternals is called Microsoft Desktops, and it will surely give the team even more rep.
It was developed by Mark and Bryce Cogswell, and provides the user with up to four virtual desktops to organize the applications.
Note: Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system comes with native support for virtual desktops. You may still run Desktops on Windows 10 machines however if you prefer it over the native implementation.
The interesting aspect about Microsoft Desktops is that it is a lightweight application. It uses less than four Megabytes of computer memory to run which is a very good value for applications of this kind.
The program minimizes itself to the Windows System Tray area automatically when you run it. You can double-click on it the icon or right-click on it and select options to display the settings it comes with.
The default option to switch between the four desktops is to hold down the Alt-key and tap on a number between 1 and 4.
Other modifier keys that are available and can be set. Desktops supports Ctrl, Shift and Windows, and the F-keys instead of numbers. You can even combine multiple modifier keys if you require thgat. The only other option available is to configure the program to start with the Windows operating system.
Switching between the virtual desktops works extremely well and fluent, there is virtually no delay.
All icons and shortcuts that have been placed on the standard desktop are replicated and available on every virtual desktop as well.
The program places an icon in the Windows system tray that displays the contents of the virtual desktops when left-clicked. Another click would select the virtual desktop and bring it up on the computer monitor.
The options of Microsoft Desktops are also accessible through the system tray icon.
Microsoft Desktops is a powerful virtual desktops solution for Windows devices. It is portable, very light on resources, and very fast at the same time. It limits desktops to four; while that should be sufficient for most use cases, users who require more need to use different programs for that as there is no option to change the maximum number of virtual desktops.
Advertising revenue is falling fast across the Internet, and independently-run sites like Ghacks are hit hardest by it. The advertising model in its current form is coming to an end, and we have to find other ways to continue operating this site.
We are committed to keeping our content free and independent, which means no paywalls, no sponsored posts, no annoying ad formats or subscription fees.
If you like our content, and would like to help, please consider making a contribution:
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.