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Customize Help

10 Steps To Customize Your Desktop

Follow these 10 easy steps to get a great looking desktop!

1. Wallpaper

The simplest and most common first step to customizing your desktop is to get a new wallpaper. There’s over 10,000 to choose from here at customize, check out our most popular wallpapers and see our help page to learn How To Use Wallpapers.

2. XP Theme

Next up you’ll definitely want to get rid of the standard windows theme in favor of something that goes with your wallpaper. Check out our selection of XP Themes and learn How To Use XP Themes.

Tip: You can use our color picker tool to find a theme that matches the color of your wallpaper! See How To Use The Color Picker.

3. Icons

With a new wallpaper and theme, you’ll probably notice that those standard icons are starting to look a bit out of place on your desktop. We’ve got some great sets of Icons to replace your old ones. For help, see How To Use Icons.

4. Firefox Theme

If you’re not already using Firefox, we highly recommend it. It’s safer (and all around nicer) to use than Internet Explorer_, and best of all you can give it a new theme! Check out our Firefox Themes and learn Themes">How To Use Firefox Themes.

5. Logon & Boot Screen

The standard Windows XP logon screen (shown below) can be changed using LogonStudio, a free download.

Check out our Logon Screens and learn How To Use LogonStudio Skins

You can also change the standard boot screen (shown when starting up your computer) using BootSkin. Learn How To Use BootSkins

6. Dock & Launcher

  • A Dock is a program launcher, similar to the animated dock used in Mac OS X. We recommend Rocket Dock which supports skins for both Object Dock and Y’z Dock. Icons for these docks can be downloaded from our Icons section.
  • App Launchers are programs that offer a quick way to find and open applications and documents. Launchy and Colibri are both skinnable app launchers.
  • Quick Launch – the standard Windows toolbar can be replaced using True Launch Bar (or free alternative, Free Launch Bar), which offers support for menus, hotkeys and widgets.

7. Widgets

  • Rainmeter and Samurize are system monitors, with a wide variety of plugin and skins for displaying information on CPU and RAM, among others. To customize these programs, check out our Rainmeter Skins and Samurize Skins sections.

8. Media Player

Winamp was the first skinnable application, and media players have a long history of using non-standard interfaces. We have skins available for a number of media players, take your pick:

9. ResHack and Tweak

Finally, there’s an endless amount of hacking and tweaking that can be done to make Windows look exactly how you want it to. For more advanced customizing, check out WinT’s Windows Modifications for a number of ways to further customize your desktop.

10. Take a Screenshot!

Got your desktop looking respectably cool? Take a screenshot (see How To Create Screenshots) and upload it to Customize! Check out how our members have customized there desktops in our Screenshots section.