If you are a fan of Windows 7, you will miss the large “Show Desktop” shortcut in Windows 10. Though you can click on the small vertical bar on the right corner of the taskbar to show desktop, this is highly inaccessible. Many users do not know there is a button hiding at the corner and difficult to precisely hover or click on that small area. The solution is to create a custom show desktop shortcut and keep it on the desktop or taskbar or start menu as per your convenient. This will help you to toggle the desktop and open applications freely.
Enable Peek Preview Desktop
By default, you can hover over the button to peek preview desktop without clicking on it. If this does not work, you can enable from the settings.
- Press “Win Logo + I” shortcut keys to open Windows Settings app.
- Go to “Personalization” section and then to “Taskbar” tab.
- Enable the option “Use Peek to preview the desktop when you move your mouse to the Show desktop button at the end of the taskbar” under “Taskbar” section.
How to Create Show Desktop Shortcut in Windows 10?
There are two methods, you can create “Show Desktop” shortcut for quick access.
- Add default Show Desktop shortcut
- Create a custom Show Desktop shortcut
Add Default Show Desktop Shortcut
Windows 10 keeps the Show Desktop shortcut in the following location.
C:\Users\Username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch
Open the location in File Explorer, by changing the username to your username.
Copy the “Show desktop” shortcut and paste it on your desktop.
Now, you can double click on the “Show desktop” to toggle between desktop and open applications.
Note, AppData folder is a hidden folder in Windows 10. If you do not see the shortcut, enable viewing hidden files by selecting “Hidden items” option under “View” menu in File Explorer.
Assign Keyboard Shortcut to Show Desktop
Though the above method is useful, you cannot pin the “Show desktop” shortcut to taskbar or start menu. When you right click on the icon, you will not see any options to pin it to taskbar. This make adding the shortcut icon on the desktop useless as you have to first view the desktop to double click on the icon. However, you can assign keyboard shortcut so that you can toggle desktop with shortcut keys.
Right click on the “Show desktop” icon on the desktop and go to “Properties”. Click on the “Shortcut key” text box and press alt, shift or control keys. You will see the modifier keys appearing in the text box and press any shortcut key like 1 or / to complete the combination. For example, we have setup the shortcut keys as “Control + Alt + 1” as shown in the below screenshot.
Click “Apply” and “OK” buttons to save your changes. Now, press the shortcut keys to toggle desktop whenever you need.
Related: 3 ways to show desktop in Mac.
Create Custom Show Desktop Shortcut
If you love to use taskbar or start menu shortcut then follow the below instructions. First, delete the “Show desktop” shortcut created using the above method.
- Right click on the desktop and select “New > Shortcut” option.
- Enter the below code in the location text box and click “Next” button.
- Provide a name for your shortcut like “Show Desktop” or “Desktop”.
- Click “Finish” button to add a new shortcut to your desktop. Now, you can see a “Show Desktop” shortcut on your desktop. Right click on it and select “Pin to taskbar” option.
- This will pin the shortcut icon to your taskbar.
Change Icon for Show Desktop Shortcut
As you see the default icon looks like the Folder icon in Windows 10, it may create confusion when pinning to the taskbar. In order to change the icon for your shortcut, right click on it and select “Properties”. On the “Properties” window, click on “Change Icon…” button.
Select an icon that you can remember to show desktop.
Click “OK” buttons on the dialog boxes to apply the change. You can see the show desktop shortcut has a different icon as you have selected.
You can unpin the previous Folder icon from taskbar and pin the new shortcut. Henceforth, click on the taskbar shortcut to toggle the desktop and open applications with single click.
Consideration for Additional Monitors
When you have dual monitors, you can allow the taskbar on both monitors so that it is easy to show desktop from any of the monitor.
- Go to Windows Settings app and then to “Personalization > Taskbar” settings.
- Turn on “Show taskbar on all displays” option under “Multiple displays” section.
- Also, select “All taskbars” option for “Show taskbar buttons on”.
This will enable the taskbar and pinned shortcuts on all monitors connected to your computer.