How to set up your desktop like mine

on April 8th, 2010 by Matt | 3 Comments »

Hello everyone. Very recently I took a new screenshot of my desktop and posted it on Twitter. I got a few responses asking on how I did it, so here we are!

Firstly, you can have a look at my desktop on my PC Specs page (if you haven’t already seen my desktop, there’s your chance). If you want to try without this tutorial all the links are already there. 😛

Now to begin! I’m going to mention everything you see on my desktop, not just the most obvious things.
Most importantly the theme. It’s a very clean and simple theme that I helped design, and it’s called Win7-Blend. As the name suggests it is only for Windows 7, and it’s a custom theme so you will need to install UXStyle. All you need to do is install both and you’re ready to go!

Next lets get the program that’s sorting my desktop icons! This is a very small but powerful program called Stardock Fences. Very easy to set up, and it can also sort your desktop icons automatically.

I’m sure you’re very interested how I got those awesome gadgets onto my desktop. This will be a little harder but I’ll take you through it. To start off you need to install Rainmeter, run it once, and download (then install, of course) the Omnimo UI theme for it. Once you’ve done that, you need to download this ZIP, extract it, and replace the old Blank1 folder in My DocumentsRainmeterSkinsWP7Common. Then use the Gallery panel included with Omnimo UI to switch to the “Blank Skin” (should be 3rd last in the fourth column under Skins). Make sure you remove the dark background that I’m sure has invaded your desktop (I actually had some trouble with this. Right click on the gallery, go to “Configs -> WP7 -> Background” then untick everything there, and do the same with “Configs -> WP7 -> Text Items -> BG”). If you’re interested I’m using the Weather, World Clock, Windows Logo, Memory, Network, Wireless, and User panels, all with slight modifications made by me. You may comment below if you’d like a copy of the code modifications I’ve made.

How about that fancy bar at the top of my left screen? Well, that is a very nice “shell replacement” called Cairoshell. It’s very easy to install (has step-by-step instructions), but I have customized it a bit. Once it’s installed and running, click on the Cairo icon in the top left. From there, select “Cairo Settings.” At the moment there isn’t too much you can do, but change the following:
Desktop tab: Untick both boxes.
Taskbar tab: Untick the box.
Menu Bar tab: Untick all boxes, and if you want set the time format to d MMMMM yyyy
After that’s done hit the orange “Restart Cairo for changes to take effect” button in the top corner to save all the settings. Too easy, wouldn’t you say?

Now for a small modification that not all people might want/need. This is only for the people running Winamp as their media player, and it’s simply Win7Shell (for Windows 7 Taskbar Integration). You may set that up how you like. Again, if you’d like it set up as I have just comment below. 🙂

Well that’s it for today, and I’d love to see your desktops. Enjoy the rest of your day!