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MajorDeath
11th Jan 2008, 01:28 PM
This is a suit to add/change your desktop skins and Icons ect... You can make your icons 3d and animated. The two main programs included are "WindowBlinds" and "IconX"

I just purchased this the other day and I'm very impressed with it. My desktop looks sweet!! 3d animated Icons, Vista style XP skins, entire themes already built. I was worried about the resources this program would use, but I haven't noticed any slowdown at all. Second I was worried if the skins Icons were actually worth paying for to use. Well if your on a budget, definately not. If you have $50 burning a hole in your pocket you won't be disappointed.

Anyone running this as well?? If so what skins/Icons are you using and do you know of any good web sights besides http://www.wincustomize.com/ to get skins and Icons from?

darth_nevus
11th Jan 2008, 01:30 PM
i used to use window blinds, but it irked me in the end. i wound up settling on themeXP. my old laptop booted using the Biohazard theme, and i loved it!

Duke{CLR}
11th Jan 2008, 01:40 PM
I have not used this. Do you have any screenshots?

juneau
11th Jan 2008, 01:41 PM
I used window blinds too and it irked me just like you Darth. I settled on using the patched UXtheme.dll and Deviant Art. :D

darth_nevus
11th Jan 2008, 01:53 PM
whoops, not themexp, thats where i got it from. its called stylexp.

i am running this one on my laptop:

http://www.themexp.org/preview.php?mid=11977&type=boot&view=&page=&cat=&name=Blue+3D+Biohazard.zip

that's just the login & boot screens.

http://www.themexp.org/preview.php?mid=118261&type=vs&view=&page=&cat=&name=Biohazard+Blue.zip

This was running on a very modded p2 266 laptop. stylexp was a very low resource program. but its been a few years since i used it.

darth_nevus
11th Jan 2008, 01:54 PM
the reason i didn't like window blinds is that windows loads, and then it "overlays" the theme onto windows. StyleXP actually replaced parts of the kernal, and other things, so that windows itself was different.

MajorDeath
11th Jan 2008, 01:58 PM
How did it "Irk" you guys?? Did you have problems with it?

I'm currently using the GT3wb5 skin with different icons. Although I like the GT3 Icons. here is a link to what the complete theme looks like.

http://www.wincustomize.com/zoom.aspx?skinid=4617&libid=1

Here are the Icons I'm using. They are animated to so when I roll over them they increase in size.

http://www.wincustomize.com/zoom.aspx?skinid=1466&libid=2


A couple of different setups I'm playing with:

http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/9780/desktopor0.jpg

http://img245.imageshack.us/img245/3569/23286262as3.jpg

CarbonFire
11th Jan 2008, 03:17 PM
I used window blinds too and it irked me just like you Darth. I settled on using the patched UXtheme.dll and Deviant Art. :D

+1 :2thumbs:

juneau
11th Jan 2008, 04:33 PM
/snip


I didn't like the overlay feature and it noticabley slowed my PC down on bootup. My current theme method has zero slowdown.

Dead...Again
11th Jan 2008, 04:57 PM
I used window blinds too and it irked me just like you Darth. I settled on using the patched UXtheme.dll and Deviant Art. :D
What is UXtheme?

CarbonFire
11th Jan 2008, 06:09 PM
I used window blinds too and it irked me just like you Darth. I settled on using the patched UXtheme.dll and Deviant Art. :D
What is UXtheme?
Ugh.....I think I'm gonna go make a sticky so I don't have to keep answering this :wink:

UXtheme is main file that controls Windows Themes in XP. Normally, it only allows you to use "official" themes, of which there is the default fugly Luna and a couple of new ones that have been made available over the years. By patching it, you trick this file into allowing windows to use any themes, instead of just the official MS ones.

The best part: Since you're using the same engine as the default windows themes, these custom msstyles themes incur no performance penalty.

here is the link to the patcher:
http://www.softpedia.com/get/Desktop-Enhancements/Themes/UXTheme-Patch-For-Windows-XP-SP2-Final.shtml

I think I might go compile a list of good themes to link to, but there are plenty available, and finding them isn't brain surgery. All you have to look for is a theme with a file in it called a .msstyles.

Here's a good place to start, but remember you can find plenty more windows themes by asking our friend :google1:

http://www.skinbase.org/Skins/msstyles/135

darth_nevus
11th Jan 2008, 06:34 PM
Juneau hit the nail on the head. the thing with window blinds, is that while "pretty", is resource intensive since both the default engine that carbonfire pointed out, as well as the windowsblinds engine is running at the same time. all windows blinds does is puts on an overlay. it didn't play well with any of my previous hardware, so from time to time, for an anology, the blinds came up, and the ugly, blah, base setup was visible.

Truth be told, windows blinds reminded me too much of the Matrix. you KNOW something else is underthere, and from time to time it pops up. uxtheme doesn't :)

Uxtheme.dll is awesome as well. i used it first, but found it more intriguing to screwup the whole of windows instead of messing with just the styles. you can do each part individually, going the free way, or mess the whole thing up like i did with stylexp.

from a freeware point, uxtheme is the best out thre, for all the reasons carbon and junau listed. 0 performance penalty. no reverting back to the normal desktop(even if for a split second) before going back into the blinds mode.