WindowBlinds 4.3 got released
today. So what is WindowBlinds? Why would you want to use it?
WindowBlinds is a program that lets you change the look and feel of your
Windows GUI. What does that mean?
WindowBlinds can change (for starters):
- Title bars
- Title bar buttons
- Title bar button positions
- Add extra title bar buttons (roll-up, always on top, MP3 controls,
- Border sizes
- Push buttons
- Radio buttons
- Check boxes
- The Start bar
- The Start menu
- Toolbar icons
- Progress bars
- Progress Animations
- Task panel (explorer tasks)
- And much more!
If you're running Windows 98, ME, or 2000, it's the only program that can do
this. If you're running Windows XP, XP comes with its own "skinning
technology" that is essentially a derivative of WindowBlinds called UXTheme.
Microsoft includes 3 skins with it (which we call visual styles). Blue, Olive,
and Green. Microsoft has released a few additional visual styles since
Windows XP's release:
Age of Mythology
All three of these use WindowBlinds. Some people have added more visual
styles by cracking their digital signing protection in uxtheme.dll. Some
programs do this on disk and others in memory. But with WindowBlinds 4.3, and
SkinStudio, you can import .msstyles
files into WindowBlinds without having to hack any of your system files.
So what are some of the specific niceties of WindowBlinds?
Here's a few quick reasons to use WindowBlinds:
It really can skin pretty much every part of
This is a big deal to me: You can set what
double clicking or right-clicking on the title bar will do. This is a huge time
You can change the color of your skins on the
WindowBlinds, unlike Windows XP on its own, can
skin "non-theme aware" programs. Most programs aren't theme aware so you end up
having a system that looks partially like XP and partially like Windows 95. The
ONLY way to make Windows XP consistently look like Windows XP is with
WindowBlinds can change progress animations. The progress
animations in Windows are the same as they've been for the past 10 years.
Toolbar icons can be changed in WindowBlinds.
These are just some of the reasons to get WindowBlinds. And
what's really nice is that with WindowBlinds 4.3, it's actually faster than the
built in visual styles because of hardware acceleration.
You can try it for yourself at