How to use Virtual Desktops in Windows 11 & why you might want to

How to use Virtual Desktops in Windows 11

Virtual Desktops in Windows 11 are a great way to boost your productivity. Here's how you can use the feature to your advantage.

  1. Without clicking, hover your mouse over the third icon from the left (Task view icon) at the bottom of the Taskbar
  2. Click the New Desktop button
  3. Switch to the New Desktop by clicking to it.
  4. You can then start a new web browsing session, open apps, and keep it separate from your main desktop
  5. Switch between desktops at any time by hovering over the Task view icon and then clicking on the virtual desktop you need.
  6. You can slide the virtual desktops by hovering over the Task View icon and clicking on the desktop and dragging around. You also can left-click on one to change background or rename.

Have you ever been working on something in Windows and wish you could keep it in its own space? Perhaps it's something personal that doesn't fit with things from work? Well, just like Windows 10, Windows 11 has a virtual desktops feature for these moments. If you're not familiar with the feature, then we're here to help. Here's a look at how to use Virtual Desktops in Windows 11.

Step 1: Enable or find the feature

Windows 11 Virtual Desktop Settings.

Virtual Desktops should be turned on by default in Windows 11. You can find it by hovering your mouse over the third icon from the left on the Taskbar (the one that looks like two squares.) If you don't see this icon, then chances are it was turned off. You can enable it by right-clicking the Taskbar and choosing Taskbar settings. Then, make sure the toggle switch for the Task view is turned on.

Step 2: Hover & click on Task view


Once you confirm that Virtual Desktops is on, you can get to it by hovering over the Task view icon in the Taskbar as we described above. There should be a prompt for New Desktop. Click it, and then launch a new desktop space. You'll be taken to a new desktop, and in this new desktop space, you can open an app, game, or document to keep it separate from your main desktop. This allows you to separate out your windows or app and browsing sessions into a new space to stay efficient and get more work done.

Step 3: Customize your experience

When a new virtual desktop space is created, you can switch to it at any time by hovering over the Task view icon, and clicking on the desktop you want to get to. You can create as many virtual desktops as you'd like. You can even rearrange the order by clicking on top of a virtual desktop in the Task view list and dragging it around.

In addition, you can rename a virtual desktop by right-clicking and choosing Rename. To better visualize your desktops you can even change the background from the right-click menu. And, you can even send windows from an active desktop to another. Just right-click the preview for an app and in the Move to menu, select the virtual desktop you want to move things to.

Check out our other Windows 11 guides!

Virtual Desktops is just one of the many cool features in Windows 11. We've been covering other Windows 11 features like running Android apps, using the Task Manager, and the themes, colors, and other desktop experiences. Be sure to keep tuned to OnMSFT for all your Windows 11 news and information.

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