Ever since I moved to MacOS Leopard and discovered Spaces, the new Virtual Desktop feature, I have wanted to have a different wallpaper for each virtual desktop. This is not supported by Spaces. I finally found a way to do this using Dockland Soft’s SpaceSuit. SpaceSuit fills in this gap rather well. And it’s free.
Head over to the SpaceSuit website and download the latest release of the application. Once downloaded the SpaceSuit dmg image should mount itself. If not, double click on the downloaded file to mount it. Once mounted you will see a window like the one below. All you to do to install it is to drag the SpaceSuit icon which is on the left of the window to the Applications folder on the right.
The installation of SpaceSuit is now complete. We can proceed to using it. Open finder and go to the Applications directory of your computer. Locate the SpaceSuit icon and double click on it to launch it. You will then see a pop-up on your screen briefly explaining to you how to use the application. There will be a check box at the bottom with a message Do not show this message again. I suggest you check it.
You will see a new icon in your Dock as well. Below is a screenshot of the SpaceSuit Dock icon. When this icon is in your Dock it means SpaceSuit is running.
Here comes the magic. To setup an image as the wallpaper for a Spaces virtual desktop all you have to do is to drag and drop the image onto the SpaceSuit icon in your dock while you are in that Spaces desktop. So if you want to setup an image as the wall paper for Space 1, go to Space 1, click on the image and drag it onto the SpaceSuit icon in your Dock. Space 1 will now use this image as its wallpaper.
SpaceSuit does not overwrite the wallpaper setup by MacOS. It creates a new layer on top of the original wallpaper and sticks the image you gave it onto this new layer. This means that to roll back to the wallpaper you setup using the Leopard Preferences pane all you need to do is to remove the new layer that SpaceSuit created. To do this right click on the SpaceSuit icon and click on the Remove Image option. You should now see the original wallpaper on this Space.
One feature that I found missing in SpaceSuit was an option to launch it at boot. Without this feature you need to manually launch SpaceSuit every time you restart your computer. There is a work around for this. Open your System Preferences pane. Click on the Accounts tab. Select your user and select the Login Items. Click on the + sign to add SpaceSuit to the list of applications here. In the finder window that opens select the SpaceSuit icon from your Applications folder. Click OK to finish. Now SpaceSuit will launch at boot and you don’t need to worry about launching it manually.
SpaceSuit does something so wonderful, and all for no price. Can’t ask for too much more, I suppose.