I also am suffering with very slow response time with Fences 18.104.22.168 on Windows 10 Version 1703 (OS Build 15063.296) 64-bit. I have Nvidia based chipset integrated graphics (slow).
This delay affects every interaction with icons: left clicks, right clicks, drags, and double clicks. Double clicks on an icon often trigger the hide all icons feature as well. There is no delay when Fences is disabled.
So I fired up Sysinternals Process Monitor and spied on explorer.exe while Fences was running. There was significant registry accesses during clicking on items on the desktop.
There were two frequently repeated patterns that were not present when Fences was disabled.
The first sequence iterates through all the items on the desktop and executes some registry writes:
6:15:27.5919416 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegQueryKey HKCU SUCCESS Query: HandleTags, HandleTags: 0x0
6:15:27.5919989 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegCreateKey HKCU\Software\Stardock\Fences\Icons SUCCESS Desired Access: All Access, Disposition: REG_OPENED_EXISTING_KEY
6:15:27.5920722 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegSetValue HKCU\Software\Stardock\Fences\Icons\<Path to an Icon on the desktop> SUCCESS Type: REG_SZ, Length: 160, Data: 6|2195|1256|21|2|0|1600|0|\\.\DISPLAY2|0|2147483647|30255323|Explorer.EXE|0|0|0
Executed for each of the 187 icons on my desktop it takes about 210ms total time for the sequence on my machine. This sequence executes twice for each item I click on. (Once when the icon is selected and one when deselected? Not sure.) That's about 420ms total time per click.
The next sequence seems to have something to do with showing the version number of Windows on the corner of the desktop.
6:15:29.7445157 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegQueryKey HKLM SUCCESS Query: HandleTags, HandleTags: 0x0
6:15:29.7445688 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegOpenKey HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows SUCCESS Desired Access: Query Value
6:15:29.7446133 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegQueryValue HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows\DisplayVersion NAME NOT FOUND Length: 144
6:15:29.7446526 PMexplorer.exe6240RegCloseKeyHKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\WindowsSUCCESS
6:15:29.7447019 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegOpenKey HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\SystemCertificates\Root\Certificates\2BD63D28D7BCD0E251195AEB519243C13142EBC3 NAME NOT FOUND Desired Access: Read, Maximum Allowed
6:15:29.7447566 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegOpenKey HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SystemCertificates\Root\Certificates\2BD63D28D7BCD0E251195AEB519243C13142EBC3 NAME NOT FOUND Desired Access: Read, Maximum Allowed
6:15:29.7448123 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegOpenKey HKCU\\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SystemCertificates\Root\Certificates\2BD63D28D7BCD0E251195AEB519243C13142EBC3 NAME NOT FOUND Desired Access: Read, Maximum Allowed
6:15:29.7448536 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegQueryKey HKCU SUCCESS Query: HandleTags, HandleTags: 0x0
6:15:29.7448987 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegOpenKey HKCU\Control Panel\Desktop SUCCESS Desired Access: Query Value
6:15:29.7449342 PM explorer.exe 6240 RegQueryValue HKCU\Control Panel\Desktop\PaintDesktopVersion SUCCESS Type: REG_DWORD, Length: 4, Data: 0
6:15:29.7449813 PMexplorer.exe6240RegCloseKeyHKCU\Control Panel\DesktopSUCCESS
This sequence repeats at intervals of about 11ms. (Every time the desktop is repainted?) It is repeated 50 times for every icon I click on for about 550ms total per click.
Altogether these two sequences seem to account for about 970ms or almost one second of delay per click. Which seems about right.