More clean desks

by Volker Weber


I showed you my desk. Let me show you my desktops. And there is a method.

Having worked with software for more than 40 years I have learned that customizing adds complexity. And complexity kills you in the end. I don't tinker with my tools. I run macOS like Apple intended it to, and the same goes for Windows. You probably remember the phase I had with Windows as a Hobby? It wasn't a tool then. It wasn't running computers I worked on. Maybe it was a virtual machine, or a computer I would randomly turn on. But it wasn't my workbench.

I keep my computers clean. If somebody sends a computer and it's not factory reset, I reset it. I will not accept any system that is not in the original state. Then I go through the standard setup process, let it sit there for hours until it has updated its software, and then I remove every piece of crapware that came with it. No games, no freebies, no nothing. Then I add the software I really use. Not the things I may use one day, but only the software I will use in the next 24 hours.

I never follow any of those "ten things you need to change on your new computer" articles. Chances are that the author, who wrote this, knows less than I do. And he will certainly know a lot less than those who built it. I set the system language to English, my locale to German. And then I make as few adjustments as I possibly can. I don't even bother with the wallpaper. The one thing I change on Windows 10 is that I disable Cortana. For the same reason I previously killed Clippy.

There is nothing on the desktop at the end of the day. Everything is cloud backed up. If that computers dies a sudden violent death, I will not lose any data. I would just have to setup a new machine.

Keep your attack surface small. Don't install anything you don't need. Dispose off things you no longer need. Reduce to the max.


Mich würde ja echt mal n kleiner Test von dir mit dem Surface Go interessieren.
Hattest du so eins schon mal in der Hand, grade weil du alles in der Cloud hast müsste das ja eigentlich für deine Anwendungen ein ganz akzeptables Gerät sein.

Christian Ott, 2018-10-05

Ich hatte bisher stets ein Problem damit, die Fotos-Mediathek am Mac auch nach Onedrive zu verschieben. Platz ist da ja genug, aber beim Kopieren der knapp 100 GB hängte sich der Sync-Dienst bisher immer auf. Gibt's dafür einen Tipp? Oder sollte das inzwischen gehen? Hab's lang nicht mehr getestet.

Tobias Vogel, 2018-10-05

Nein, dafür habe ich keinen Tipp. Das würde ich mit iCloud machen.

Christian, ja, das würde wahrscheinlich gehen. Es gibt nur ein Problem: Mein Surface Pro ist viel zu stark. Daneben sieht ein Go nicht gut aus.

Volker Weber, 2018-10-05

I like your clean desk, but did you know that OneDrive nowadays also can backup/synchronise My Documents/My Desktop with a new functionality called "Folder Protection"?

frank van rijt, 2018-10-05

On the same page:

Some time ago, apple inverted the scroll direction of the trackpad to make it behave like on iOS.

It occurred to me that I would either have to get accustomed to the change, or be irritated every single time I use another Macbook.

Now I leave all settings as default on every device and it works well for me.

Timo Stamm, 2018-10-06

Old archive pages

I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.


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