Wednesday, September 19, 2007 by Frogboy | Discussion: WinCustomize News
If you have Object Desktop you can now download WindowBlinds 6 beta 2. For the uninitiated: WindowBlinds is a program that allows users to easily and safely change the look and feel of the Windows user interface (title bars, start bar, star menu, scrollbars, push buttons, etc.). Object Desktop is a suite of programs that allow users to personalize their entire Windows experience.
Now, WindowBlinds 6 is the next-generation version of WindowBlinds. Amongst its cool new features is the ability to do full blurred glass even on Windows XP. Full support of skinning every piece of Windows Vista. Advanced animation and advanced colorization, user sub-styles and well just tons of other features both big and small.
Beta 2 is a huge overhaul to the underlying structure of WindowBlinds. For years, the skins you download for WindowBlinds have gone into the WindowBlinds directory. But with Windows Vista, Microsoft really frowns on programs putting data in the program files directory. So beta 2 migrates all the skins to the shared documents folder.
Those of you who are technical can probably appreciate the immense amount of effort involved in smoothly migrating what can amount to gigs of skins from one place to another without disrupting the user experience in the process.
Below are some screenshot highlights:
The advanced coloring support is extremely cool. Now you can specific which colors you want to affect. It takes a little practice but it's worth it. Now you can hue shift parts of your skin. So even if a skin author makes a skin a different color than you desire, no problem, you can easily change it.
The dragon on the start menu is a smooth, >30fps animation with fire effects. It does this on Windows XP and Windows Vista. Again, technical users out there can tell you - non-trivial to get this kind of performance.
WindowBlinds 6 not only has these cool features but it does it using trivial amounts of memory and is FASTER than Windows XP or Windows Vista are normally. We include the Diamond skin. Feel free to dual boot to a Windows XP box, load up Diamond with full blur on and check out the performance. Then boot to Windows Vista and run the default Aero. Which is faster? WindowBlinds 6 makes full use of the DWM on Windows Vista to maximize performance/lower memory requirements.
If you have Object Desktop, check it out for yourself, let us know what you think. We release on October 2nd!