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Is Desktop Icon-placement random?

I would love to know what rules WIN XT uses when it places a new icon on the desktop; perhaps in a general way if nothing specific.  Surely it can't be random.   I've never seen this topic mentioned.

Example:  My desktop is crowded with 3M Post-It notes (the electronic kind) along with a calendar and usually a couple of open programs and file icons. When I download software or a photo, the icon is often covered up and without clearing the desktop I have trouble finding it.  Usually it's somewhere on the left under Post-Its... but sometimes on the upper right... and sometimes I just can't find it.  I can go to Recent Documents and find the name and eventually I find the download.  

Sorting the desktop is not an option because I have files and program icons located in specific places.

If I had some idea how OS and other software determine where to put new icons on the desktop it would be a good clue where to look.

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Paul MacDonald
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Carolinadon:  You might look into Object Desktops "Fences" for your desktop.  Located here
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Old habits die hard and I like downloading to the desk top.  Knowing that it should begin in upper left and move to lower right may help.  Perhaps someone will have a tip or trick that highlights a file name.  I'll leave this open a few days to see...


ps- I have already tried the Fences thing but did not like the way it worked.
How about making a folder called "Downloads" on your desktop and putting everything in there?  Then you can put the folder wherever it's convenient...
That's a good point and worth trying. Thanks.