Common Misconceptions About the Desktop

New Mac users often have trouble understanding the concept of the Desktop because the term is used to describe a variety of things. Understanding the difference between THE Desktop, the Desktop FOLDER and Desktop SPACES, and how the three are related, is an important step to understanding how to use your Mac.

Comments: 16 Responses to “Common Misconceptions About the Desktop”

    Judy Edwards
    3 months ago

    Thanks again for a great class. Guess I had better use this information to clean up my computers!

    Lencho
    3 months ago

    Sometimes a Desktop space has a name/names. It seems to be hit and miss. Is there a way to take control? What is the limit of number of spaces?

    3 months ago

    Lencho: A Desktop Space never has a name, just a number. What you saw was either a Full Screen app window Space, or a Split View Space, not a Desktop Space.

    Dennis Ashenfarb
    3 months ago

    Gary - Great content! Can you lock down a desktop Space?

    3 months ago

    Dennis: Lock down ... in what way?

    John Fleming
    3 months ago

    What is the practical use of different desktop spaces? How is creating different desktop spaces a workflow advantage?

    3 months ago

    John: If you have a lot of app windows open, it can make it seem like you have multiple screens. So on one space you have Mail and Notes open, and other you have Safari and Calendar. Groups app windows on a space that makes sense for the work you are doing. But don't force it. You don't need to use spaces at all if it doesn't fit the way you work.

    Mark L
    3 months ago

    Does each Desktop Space have the same Desktop Wallpaper image or can you have a different image on each Desktop Space?

    Does the iCloud copy of the Desktop Folder allow for a backup of the files or is the file removed from iCloud immediately?

    3 months ago

    Mark: You can assign different wallpaper to each Desktop Space if you like. I have a note about that in the video.
    Not sure what you mean by "is the file removed from iCloud immediately." Why would the file be removed from iCloud? The Desktop folder is just a normal iCloud Drive folder. iCloud isn't a backup though. Not sure what you are asking here.

    Stephen Goodrick, Sr
    3 months ago

    I never watch your presentations without learning something new and useful. Wow, Gary, where do you put all this information about MAC? Under that ball cap lurks an enormous brain!! I had no idea really about the desktop and now I feel confident about where the desktop files really reside and how to simplify things. Thanks again.

    John Capron
    3 months ago

    This was very clear and concise.

    John Perry
    3 months ago

    I was yet another who had this misconception. Loved the layer visualisation.This begs the question where are my files stored and where should they be stored (best practice) ? Judging by the comments I am not alone. Can you suggest a strategy where and how to begin and when you know you are finished?

    3 months ago

    John: Where you store them is up to you. I would suggest storing everything in well-organized folders inside your Documents folder. Storing things in the Desktop folder creates visual clutter that can hurt productivity for many people. The Documents folder is there to hold all of your Documents.

    Sheldon
    3 months ago

    I watched again after viewing it first on Pateron...thanks again

    kathy kinan
    3 months ago

    love love love your info.
    when i create, say, reminder lists and store them on desktop (space) 2, are these lists stored in icloud? more specifically, do i have access to these lists from my other devices?
    i wish i could send you a pic of how i cleaned up my desktop area by relocating all my handwritten lists in reminders and placing them on a different desktop space. fab.

    3 months ago

    Kathy: Are these lists in the Reminders app? Or are they lists saved as a file, like a text file or a file created by Pages or something? If they are in the Reminders app, then you should see them in the Reminders app on your other devices. If they are files in your Desktop folder, then if you have iCloud Desktop & Documents turned on, then you should see them in the Desktop folder on your other devices.

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