Microsoft has released four new themes for their operating system Windows 7. Some users who have not made the switch yet may wonder how it can be that Microsoft seems to be pumping out themes for the Windows 7 operating system but released less than a handful for Windows Vista and XP combined,
Two aspects play a role. There is the new and improved theme engine in Windows 7 that makes it much easier to create and share themes.
Anyone can create new themes on devices running Windows 7, as a new theme is automatically created when a user changes the wallpaper of the system. It is possible to add additional wallpapers to the theme and change colors, sounds and other elements.
The second reason for this seems to be a change in strategy. Microsoft seems to have realized that these things make a lot of users happy. That in turn is good for Microsoft as it changes the perception of the company's operating system and company.
It needs to be noted that we are talking about lite themes here. They cannot be compared to full conversion themes that modify things such as the taskbar, start menu and icons of the operating system. Those still require that you patch system files before they can be applied.
The four new themes have been released at the Personalization website over at Microsoft. All themes can be downloaded from that website free of charge. Themes can be installed on the operating system with a simple double-click on the downloaded file.
The themes as you can see consist of a dog, cat, summit and Christmas theme.
Update: Microsoft in the meantime has been very busy and uploaded dozens of themes to the official personalization gallery for the operating system. Windows 7 users can download and install those themes with a single click, and while they make only basic changes to the operating system, they often do contain nice wallpaper images that you'd like to beautify your desktop with.
Update 2: Microsoft has changed the themes site for Windows 7 in the meantime. The starting page lists links to themes, wallpapers, languages and the personalization gallery now.
A click on themes lists the available lightweight themes for Windows that you can download. Those are further divided into categories such as art, movies, natural wonders or with custom sound.
All themes are free to download, and should work on all versions of Windows starting with Windows 7.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.