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How to Automatically Hide Your Desktop Icons on Windows
DIY Tech , Newsletters
July 14, 2023
How to Automatically Hide Your Desktop Icons on Windows

If you find yourself frequently needing to hide your desktop icons to maintain a clutter-free workspace, you can automate the process using third-party software. These tools provide convenient options to automatically hide and show your desktop icons based on certain triggers or conditions. Just like the recent articles on how to use Lively Wallpaper to change your desktop into a wallpaper gallery, a website, or a video, these techniques can encourage  your minimalist work environment and enhance your workflow. Here’s how you can achieve automatic hiding of your desktop icons on Windows:

Step 1: Download and Install Third-Party Software

Search for reliable and trusted third-party software that specializes in hiding desktop icons automatically. Two popular options are “Desktop Icon Toy” and “Fences.” Visit the official websites or trusted software repositories to download the software installer. But my absolute favorite (super easy and super free) is SoftwareOK’s Auto Hide Desktop Icons. I just set mine to 5 seconds and viola – the icons are gone until I move the mouse again! This reminds me, you should check out the post on how to hide your Windows mouse from your desktop.

I mean, what wallpaper is kinda useless if I can’t see it. This turns my screen into a nice image gallery or video player while on the desktop without having to do a thing! Like magic! I love this!

Use all three of these techniques and you won’t regret it!

Step 2: Install and Configure the Software

Run the installer and follow the on-screen instructions to install the software on your computer. Once installed, open the software and explore its settings and options.

Step 3: Customize Auto-Hide Settings

In the software settings, you’ll likely find options related to hiding and showing desktop icons automatically. Configure these settings according to your preferences. Some common settings you may come across include:

- Timer-Based Hiding: Set a timer that automatically hides the desktop icons after a certain period of inactivity.

How to Automatically Hide Your Desktop Icons on Windows

- Hotkey Activation: Assign a hotkey combination that instantly hides or shows the desktop icons when pressed.

How to Automatically Hide Your Desktop Icons on Windows

- Trigger-Based Hiding: Set specific triggers, such as launching a full-screen application or locking the computer, to automatically hide the desktop icons.

Step 4: Save and Apply Settings

Once you have customized the auto-hide settings, save your changes and apply them. The software will now work in the background, monitoring the specified triggers or conditions to automatically hide or show your desktop icons accordingly.

Step 5: Test and Adjust as Needed

Try out the configured settings and ensure the desktop icons hide automatically based on the triggers you set. If necessary, return to the software settings to make adjustments until you achieve the desired automatic hiding behavior.


By utilizing third-party software specifically designed for hiding desktop icons automatically, you can streamline your workflow and maintain a clutter-free workspace effortlessly. Download a reliable software tool, customize the auto-hide settings to your preferences, and let the software handle the automatic hiding and showing of your desktop icons based on specific triggers or conditions. Enjoy a clean and organized desktop environment without the need for manual intervention.


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