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  1. #1
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Default Help applying .theme files or looking for Desktop Theme Manager

    Hi - I'm trying to use older .theme files with Windows 7. The Personalize area doesn't recognize these themes so I'm trying to first apply them with a theme manager then save them in the Personalize area so they will be an up to date theme. However, I'm having trouble doing this. I've tried a couple of different theme managers (Desktop Architect & Desktop Themes) and they don't correctly do what I want. Desktop Architect doesn't apply all elements and Desktop Themes will work fine except for when I apply a theme (then save it in the Windows Personalization area) and then move to the next theme - then it over writes the picture from the previous theme that I already saved (happens in the Windows Personalization Area). The reason I'm looking for this is that I have *many* themes (in the hundreds) from older operating systems. I *don't* want to have to set all the elements of each theme manually (which I know I can do in the Personalize area), theme by theme (too time consuming). Any help or direction in solving this issue would be **greatly** appreciated. I would love to figure this out. Thanks!!!

  2. #2
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
    Elmer B. is offline Windows Enthusiast
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    If the "themes" are based on a standard Windows style, then it may, just may, be possible.
    Can you attach one in a .zip file and I'll have a quick look to see if I can find anything.

  3. #3
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Default Help applying .theme files or looking for Desktop Theme Manager

    Hi - Thanks for your reply. I would attached a zip with a theme but it says that I can't post attachments and I can't post web addresses so I don't know how to let you know what I'm talking about. Any ideas? Thanks for any help!

  4. #4
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
    Elmer B. is offline Windows Enthusiast
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    Have you got sky drive? Or MediaFire? or something of that kind? Actually, setting up a MediaFire free account is very quick. Or you could Private Message me an email address, that I could then send my email address to.

    (The reason you can't post links or attach files is you are a new member. It's an Anti-spam measure that disappears when you hit ten posts).

    If you need to post me a link, leave the http:// part off.
    Last edited by Elmer B.; 18th November 2010 at 20:03.

  5. #5
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
    Elmer B. is offline Windows Enthusiast
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    There are a load of differences appearing (obviously!!).

    Typical example of an address: Wait=%ThemeDir%\Frosty's Friends\Busy Rabbit.ani The \ is missing from all the path names.
    It references a couple of system files that aren't on (my) Windows 7 set up Tweakui.cpl, SNDREC32.EXE amongst other things.

    I think you may have to bite the bullet and manually insert them / modify them.

    I'll have a play about with this one and see how easy (hard!) it'll be to update it.

  6. #6
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - Thanks for looking at that and for your help. I was trying to use a theme manager to avoid having to manually modify the themes. The thing is, using the program called "Desktop Themes" almost works. I can select a theme, apply it, then head over to the Personalize area in Windows 7 and save the Unsaved Theme. It saves successfully and shows the correct picture. The problem comes when I move on to the next theme and apply the next one I want to work on. Then it replaces the wallpaper of the one I just saved (looking at the named entry - not at the Unsaved Theme this time) with the wall paper of the next theme I'm trying to work on and just applied. I've tried the program called "Desktop Architect" but it doesn't apply all elements although all are selected to apply. This is why I figured if I could get a good theme manager I might be able to pull this off without all the hassle. Any ideas? I really appreciate you helping me.

  7. #7
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
    Elmer B. is offline Windows Enthusiast
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    I'm thinking, if you apply a "theme", then in Personalize, r-click on that theme and save theme for sharing. It might do it. I know when I clicked on my usual theme after applying a few pieces, my 'arrow cursor' was still a snowball and 'My Computer' icon was still a robin!!
    One other thing you'll find. The theme you sent me, the icons only contain 48x48 size and 24bit.

    BTW When I save a 'non-standard' or new cursor set I export and save the registry key that links to the cursors. You'll find saved sets under the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Cursors\Schemes registry key.

  8. #8
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - Thanks again. I tried what you suggested and it worked so that the background stayed but the icons for ie the Recycle Bin didn't come out right (for the Recycle Bin it shows the icon from the very first theme I worked with and the other icons don't come through although the Recycle Bin icon is right when it applies - none of the others are though but that would be ok). You mentioned that the icons were only 48x48 and 24 bit. Will that create any problems? Also, what will saving the registry key help with? Thanks.
    Last edited by niagara94; 18th November 2010 at 22:51.

  9. #9
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
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    Saving the registry key is handy f you ever need to re-install. You have instant cursor set(s) in the Mouse Pointer Window. The only requirement is that the cursors folder(s) are put to the same path. Then merge your saved reg files.

    Just a thought on the recycle bin you mentioned. After saving your new "theme package" it might be worth resetting your Desktop icons to their Default settings before starting on your next theme. And I'm sorta guessing here!!

    Another thought, I'm assuming you are basing these all off the Aero (standard) msstyles (or theme). Try changing to something totally different, like the Architecture or Nature themes. Then back.

    The icon size is only an issue if you like huge icons, otherwise OK.
    Last edited by Elmer B.; 19th November 2010 at 01:15. Reason: Another Thought

  10. #10
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - Thanks. Resetting the icons worked (yea!). Now I'm almost set. One last thing. I save the theme for sharing (I save it in the same folder as the original .theme file) then go back and try to double click on the .themepack file (to make it show up in personalize). The majority of the time this works - the theme applies and it shows up in the Personalize area. However, once in a while, when I double click on the themepack file nothing happens and it doesn't show up in Personalize. Any ideas? Thanks.

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