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Thread: Help applying .theme files or looking for Desktop Theme Manager

  1. #11
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
    Elmer B. is offline Windows Enthusiast
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    Quote Originally Posted by niagara94 View Post
    ...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.
    I'll be honest.
    No.
    I haven't!!
    I tried out the save for sharing option before suggesting it and saved it in the default offered (My Doc's). I clicked that twice (in error, trying to open** it!) and I ended up with 3 "Elmers Blue.theme" in the Local\Microsoft\Windows\Themes folder. So Gawd knows!

    I'd probably put the ones that don't load automatically in another folder (Failures??) and carry on. When I'd done them all I'd open one successful themepack** and see if I could spot the glaring error that was stopping the "failures".



    **You can extract a themepacks contents with (a) 7-zip or (b) change the file extension (.themepack) to .rar and use WinRAR.

    But hey. Look on the bright side. You're getting them done!!

    BTW For your info, as it hasn't been needed (so far!) I've deleted the PM with your email address.

    After thought (I'm good at those!!) When you extract one of the failures, open the .theme file enclosed with a text editor (Notepad). Towards the bottom of the list look for
    Code:
    [MasterThemeSelector]
    MTSM=DABJDKT
    If that's not there, it'll never work.
    Last edited by Elmer B.; 19th November 2010 at 08:41. Reason: After thought #2

  2. #12
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - Thanks. I might have figured it out. The failed one I included an apostrophe in the title. I tried saving it again without the apostrophe and it worked. I guess the file name can't have any unusual characters in it?? Maybe - anyways, all set there. I had a couple of other questions too. When I apply the themes the sound files associated with the theme apply and I hear the sounds. However, when I save the theme and then double click on the themepack file, the result doesn't have the sounds. Secondly, there are some theme backgrounds that need the icon font color changed. In previous OS's I accomplished this using a different theme manager (Desktop Architect). To do that I would change the desktop color from black to white or visa versa. Is there any way in Windows 7 that I can change the icon font color? I can't tell you how much I appreciate all the help you are giving me!

  3. #13
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
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    Bit late response I know, but hey, Its Friday!! All the colours should be stored in the theme file under the (theme file) heading, [Metrics]. However if you've got this far (and it was me) I'd swap the colours in the "loaded theme", re save and update the (new)themepack. Then again, I only have 2 to worry about! Under the metrics you could copy/paste to update it, BUT, ignore the NonClientMetrics and IconMetrics entries. That is, of course, unless you are confident! I suppose its all down to how many themes you are trying to update. (I guess more than two!!!). I digress. In the metrics the font colour, if not default, should be specified as an RGB value, i.e. o,0,0. 255, 255, 255 etc.

  4. #14
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - A late response is no problem! Thanks for writing back. I don't see the Metrics heading (I'm looking at the theme file in Notepad). However, I see a heading titled [Control Panel\Colors]. I went there and changed the Background RGB color value but that didn't do it. I'm not sure which line will change the icon text. I'm not looking to get fancy with icon font color - just simply black or white depending on the wallpaper color - whatever it takes to make the icon text readable. When I was using a different theme manager in a different OS all I had to do is change the desktop background to black or white and the icon text would be the opposite of what the desktop background was.

    Also, any ideas about whey the sounds aren't saving? They are there when I apply the theme (I can actually see the correct file names in the Sounds area) but not when I save the theme for sharing. I look at the theme file in Notepad and it just says "IDS_SCHEME_DEFAULT".

    Thanks again! And no rush on replying!
    Last edited by niagara94; 20th November 2010 at 04:38.

  5. #15
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by niagara94 View Post
    I don't see the Metrics heading (I'm looking at the theme file in Notepad). However, I see a heading titled [Control Panel\Colors].
    You're right, it is the [Control Panel\Colors] heading. I hadn't put a "paragraph break" between the groupings and they'd all merged into one big group. Well, they had through beer goggles!! I know what you mean about the icon text always being a "contrasting colour".
    This link is about the best page I've found on saving custom themepacks and also gives a link to the "official" web page.

    I'll admit I know little about sounds apart from they must be a .wav file. The only sound I have set is the P.O.S.T beep at start up. The only thing I can think is because you're using non-standard sounds, it looks in the sounds folder (Is there such a thing? Quick search, Yes, Media Folder) and if it doesn't find them it autos to default.
    Maybe drop the Theme Sounds (Frosty) in a Folder called Frosty into the Media folder? You need of course to make sure the wav files go with your themepack.

    This is my Sounds entry
    Code:
    [Sounds]
    ; IDS_SCHEME_DEFAULT
    SchemeName=No Sounds
    The line ; IDS_SCHEME_DEFAULT is its generic name. Specified Sound group (folder as above) or individual sounds should be listed below.

  6. #16
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
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    I've just knocked up two wallpapers, one basically white. T'other Black. I can't see my icon titles (white) on the white background. In other words they haven't automatically changed. (It did in XP) I think that you'll need to specify font colour.

  7. #17
    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - Thanks. Guess what? I figured out the sound issue. What I had to do was save the sound scheme after applying the theme and before saving it. Now it is included when I save the theme. As far as the icon font color, I have no idea which of the lines under the "Control Panel/Colors" section would control that. I read somewhere online that if you are using Aero (which I am) then you should avoid altering the values in that section. I would think that there would be somewhere though to change icon font color - just have no idea where (which line does it).

  8. #18
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
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    You're doing well sorting this out yourself. And using me as a sounding board!!

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    niagara94 is offline Beginner
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    Hi - I decided that the way Windows 7 shows the icon text on a white screen isn't bad so I'll leave that part well enough alone. Just wanted to say thanks for all your help. I really appreciated all you did to help me!!! Now I can do what I want and it will be quicker than any other way I would do it. Many thanks!!!

  10. #20
    Elmer B.'s Avatar
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    No Problem. Its been a bit of a learning curve for me as well. Between us (mainly you!!) we've sussed out a few things for updating old themepacks.
    No funny characters in title or title path.
    Re-set icons before starting new themepack.
    Add and save sounds after loading theme then re-save theme.
    Etc. etc..
    I reckon you'd be up to writing a good tutorial about this now!! B.T.W. What system where the themes originally for?

    I used to hack my XP system left, right and centre. Knocked up a couple of Visual Styles, changed all my icons etc.. Now I've moved up to Seven a lot of the stuff I learnt comes in handy, yet at times I feel like I've gone back to the first school!

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