How to Customize and Personalize the Windows 10 Desktop

Windows 10 offers many ways for users to customize and personalize their desktop to suit their personal preferences. From changing wallpapers to tweaking taskbar settings, you have a lot of options to make Windows 10 look and function exactly how you want.

Changing the Wallpaper

One of the easiest ways to customize the look of your desktop is to change the wallpaper.

To change the desktop wallpaper in Windows 10:

  1. Right-click on the desktop and select Personalize
  2. Click on Background in the Personalization menu
  3. Select a wallpaper from the available options:
  • Picture – Select a single image file from your computer as the wallpaper
  • Slideshow – Set up a slideshow of images to rotate as the wallpaper
  • Solid color – Choose a solid color for a clean, simple background

You can also adjust how the wallpaper is positioned, change background colors, and more in this menu.

Customizing the Start Menu

The Windows 10 Start menu allows you to quickly access commonly used apps and folders. You can customize it to better suit your needs:

  • Rearrange tiles – Click and drag tiles to place them where you want on the Start menu
  • Resize tiles – Right-click on a tile and select Resize to make it bigger or smaller
  • Unpin apps – Right-click on an app tile and select Unpin from Start to remove it
  • Create folder groups – Drag app tiles into groups to keep things organized
  • Enable full-screen mode – Makes the Start menu open in full-screen for easier navigation

Changing Taskbar Settings

You can tweak the Windows taskbar in several ways:

  • Move position – Set the taskbar to appear vertically on the left or right side of your screen instead of horizontally along the bottom
  • Resize – Make the taskbar thinner or wider to save space or view more pinned apps
  • Auto-hide – Set the taskbar to auto-hide when not in use to maximize space
  • Rearrange pinned apps – Click and drag pinned app icons to customize their order

Using Themes

Themes are pre-designed packages that give your entire Windows desktop a makeover. They include wallpapers, sounds, icons, mouse cursors, and color schemes.

To use themes:

  1. Go to Settings > Personalization > Themes
  2. Click on a theme collection category to browse available themes
  3. Select a theme and click Apply to preview the theme
  4. If you want to keep the theme, leave it selected and exit out of the Personalization menu

You can also download additional themes from the Microsoft Store.

Changing Desktop Icon Settings

If you want your desktop icons or system icons like This PC and Recycle Bin to look different, you can easily change them.

To change desktop icons:

  1. Right-click on the desktop and select Personalize
  2. Click on Themes
  3. Scroll down and select Desktop icon settings
  4. Choose the icon you want to change
  5. Click the Change Icon button
  6. Select a new icon from the options or browse your files for a custom image
  7. Click OK to apply the new icon

Using Third-Party Software

For further customization options not available within Windows itself, you can use third-party software:

  • Rainmeter – Adds customizable skins, info meters, and visualizers
  • WindowBlinds – Skins and themes to customize the look of windows and frames
  • IconPackager – Creates icon packages to customize individual icons
  • StartIsBack – Provides enhanced Start menu customization options
  • TranslucentTB – Makes the taskbar translucent for a modern, blurred glass effect

By mixing and matching Windows tools with third-party software, you can craft a Windows 10 desktop that is uniquely yours. Experiment with different customizations to find your perfect desktop environment.