Linux has an application called gkrellm. It displays battery, network, CPU usage, system temperature, disk usage etc on the desktop. Gkrellm is configurable and can run on system startup too. Gkrellm comes with most distributions. There is a Windows version too, but it is outdated as of now.
A good substitute that exactly does what gkrellm did on Windows is called Rainmeter. Download and install Rainmeter from this link http://rainmeter.net/.
The key advantage of using such a tool is to ensure system health and monitor network usage by the computer.