Copyright (c) 2012-2016 Hyperion Entertainment and contributors.

Using the Workbench

From AmigaOS Documentation Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search

There are two primary means of interacting with icons or files on the Workbench, those sat on the Workbench screen, also known as the Desktop, and those sat in Drawers.

Workbench Screen

The Workbench screen is the primary visual component of your system. Its main element is the Workbench root window; it can be either a normal window, or, more commonly used, a backdrop window, in which case the window frame vanishes, and its content is displayed directly on the Workbench background. Nevertheless, it is actually still technically a window. In either case, the role of the root window is the same: icons and other windows appear on it.

The Workbench screen itself is identified by the Amiga Workbench title bar located along the top border of the display. The title bar also displays the number of bytes of graphics memory and other memory currently available. You can change which pieces of information are displayed in the title bar; this is done in the Workbench preferences program in your Prefs drawer, where also other useful adjustments can be made to the way your Workbench operates.

When you boot your Amiga, the Workbench root window contains icons for any disks present in the system (including removable disks), the Ram Disk, and any other icons determined by your system configuration.

If you press the right mouse button, the title bar will show all available menus.


A Drawer displays the content of a directory or folder stored on your computer.

By default, the files shown here all have an associated icon file. The icon is the little image you actually see. To open a file, double-click its icon. Files without an associated icon are normally hidden.

In order to display all files (i.e. even those without an icon), select Show All Files in the Window menu.

To close the window, click on its close gadget (located in the top left corner of the window), select Close in the Window menu or press Right AMIGA+K (see keystrokes for a list of useful keyboard shortcuts).