Virtual desktops allow you to have multiple workspaces without having to spend money on extra monitors. If you are one of those people who are easily distracted by multiple applications open on the desktop, virtual desktops allow you to compartmentalize your work by grouping related windows together on different virtual screens. This in turn lets you avoid the clutter and distraction created by opening multiple utilities, decreasing the time wasted in maximizing and minimizing different apps and ultimately increasing your productivity. As we know, Windows RT – the tablet-only version of Windows 8 with ARM processor – does not support x86 applications, and every useful tool that you normally use cannot be installed on an RT device. However, the guys at XDA have developed workarounds for some of the applications. VirtualWin is one such application that has been modified to run on jailbroken Windows RT devices. It is a desktop manager that allows you to take advantage of multiple workspaces and increase your screen real estate.
First of all, you need a jail broken Windows RT tablet to use this app, since Microsoft doesn’t allow you to sideload third-party Desktop apps on Windows RT devices by default. If you haven’t already jailbroken your tablet, you can follow this guide to learn how to do so.
Next, you need to head over to XDA and download the ZIP file of the modified version of VirtualWin using the link provided at the end of this post. Unzip the contents of the file using an unzip utility such as Unpacker, and then just run the VirtualWin executable file from the extracted files to start the desktop manager.
The app runs in the system tray and can be accessed by right-clicking or long pressing its icon. The context menu that pops up allows you to access the available virtual desktops.
Select Setup from the right-click menu to access the configuration options. It allows you to change a few general settings, hotkeys, mouse options. modules and some advanced options to tweak your virtual desktop experience on the device.
Hotkeys can come particularly handy in quickly switching between multiple desktops if you are using your tablet with the keyboard attached. VirtualWin is a free and open-source application, and the modified version seems to work just fine on jailbroken Windows RT (tested on jailbroken Surface RT). You can download it from the original XDA-Developers forum thread linked below.