Windows only: Fences is a program, free for personal use, that helps you organize your Windows desktop. I don’t know about you, but I have problem with organization when it comes to computers. When I install an application, I often install the startup icon for that application on my desktop. When I download files, I usually download them to my desktop, thinking that if they are on my desktop, I won’t forget to clean them up later. That’s the plan at least. The reality is that after time, this results in a desktop filled with many application icons, downloaded files, and other debris that makes my desktop a virtual mess.
Fences helps to bring order to this mess. The screenshot above (yep, that’s my wife and I) should give you a pretty good idea of how Fences works. Fences lets you draw shaded areas on your desktop, almost like you are creating boxes or fenced in areas, and drop icons into them. You can label the boxes, and move and resize them. For example, my desktop has one area for games, another for PC tools, another for web design tools, etc. Once you have your desktop fences set up to your liking, you can then lock the fences, so that you don’t accidentally move or resize them. You can still drop icons into a locked fence. Also, you can double-click your desktop to cause all of your icons to fade out, so that you can show off your wallpaper. Another double-click will make them return. Fences isn’t really a launcher or dock alternative, because you still need to go to the desktop to launch programs. I typically still use the Quick Launch bar or the Start menu for most programs. But for organizational purposes, Fences is great. As a result of Fences, I have much neater desktop. I still download files to my desktop (a habit that I may change), but I am much more motivated to keep my desktop clean now that it is otherwise so organized. Fences is Windows only, and is free for personal use. On Vista and Windows 7, both 32bit and 64bit versions are supported. While we’re on the topic of launchers, docks, or desktop organizers, do you have any tools that you’d recommend?