Should I Save Files On The Desktop?

Many people choose to save files on their desktop because they are easily accessible. However, what they may not know is that there are certain risks associated with this practice – the biggest one being that you increase the chances of losing your files. In an attempt to discourage people from saving files on their desktop, here are a few points that you need to consider.

  • Files on your desktop are not very secure. These files are in plain view to any person that sits down at your computer if you remain logged on. Not only can they read them, they may inadvertently delete them.
  • If you have to use the System Restore feature of Windows XP, some files that are stored on your desktop may not be preserved. In other words, they will be gone after the restore process is complete.
  • Files saved to the desktop are stored in your user profile. This increases the size of your profile. If you are using roaming profiles, the files follow you around regardless of which computer you log on to.
  • If your user profile becomes corrupt, you will lose all your desktop files.

[tags]xp,unclutter,my documents,clean desktop,saving files to desktop[/tags]

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  • Alan Monroe

    >Files saved to the desktop are stored
    >in your user profile. This increases the
    >size of your profile.

    Color me skeptical. The Desktop folder and the My Documents folder are both under Documents and Settings\your user id. You get the same size increase regardless of the two you pick, so it’s inconsequential which of the two places you pick, from a size perspective.

  • http://truespel.com Tom Zurinskas

    Thanks Diana,

    I like creating new files on the desktop. It’s so easy to right click a blank spot on the desktop, select an application, give the file a name and open it as a new file. But you say it’s not that secure. Suppose I move them to a folder on the desktop. Any more secure?

  • Mark

    The files in the Desktop folder load into active memory, while the files in My Documents do not. So it makes a huge difference in terms of system resources.

  • Big

    @ Alan Monroe:
    You can redirect My Documents to wherever you want (eg a server share) so your statement that it is inconequential is partially incorrect. Sure if you make no changes then it’s no issue but many corporate environments do redirect them and also enable roaming profiles, in which case there are (potentially bad) consequences…
    @ Tom Zurinskas….no not really…..
    Just don’t do it or if you do, use this only temporarily and move them at then end of your session! Use shortcuts!

  • anon

    I read that whole article today after seeing a post on lifehacker, and all I have to say is that it is complete and utter bullshit. This guy is speaking out of his ass with no backup whatsoever and almost all of the points he *tries* to make are completely false

  • anon

    I read that whole article today after seeing a post on lifehacker, and all I have to say is that it is complete and utter bullshit. This guy is speaking out of his ass with no backup whatsoever and almost all of the points he *tries* to make are completely false

  • Jim Rickhardth Hartmann

    Then I supose my dear anon that you are so godgifted that u have a good backup for that statement and gives us a clear, easy review on his every mistake :-)

    • [email protected]

      Haha agree wheres your backed up story with his mistakes?

  • Anonymous

    Then I supose my dear anon that you are so godgifted that u have a good backup for that statement and gives us a clear, easy review on his every mistake :-)

    • [email protected]

      Haha agree wheres your backed up story with his mistakes?