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Author Topic: Anyone have a nice, clean XP theme that I can download?  (Read 4668 times)
superboyac
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« on: August 10, 2010, 09:05:44 AM »

I'm looking for someone to give me a theme for XP that has really nice fonts and clean design.  I'm not looking for some crazy colors or backgrounds, more so the fonts.  I know I can go tweak everything myself, but I first wanted to see if someone has already done that.

The default fonts are super ugly, even with cleartype on.  Why does everything look better on a mac?  What fonts are they using?  I tried using gdipp, but I don't think it's for xp and all the applications had errors with it (ALL of them).  Is it me or is Tahoma ugly?  And even Arial looks really bad in MS Word.  I don't know if you can tell from the screenshot, but it looks lame:
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tomos
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2010, 11:13:19 AM »

well, to me the best XP theme is classic (modified)
I like my current one which I've had at least 6 months now
I guess I'm cheating a bit if I show Dopus which I did have to be tweak a lot to 'fit in'



Re fonts I'm not much help I guess cause I'm still using Tahoma in the windows theme. No idea what I'm using in Dopus, probably default
I changed all the icons to Tango using 'Tango Patcher' - after reboot it always tells me some didnt take and do I want to reboot - I dont have the option to tell it not to show the message again, so everytime I have to click [No Way Do I Want To Reboot]
I have grey desktop & grey 'backdrop' within apps - which had to be custom-added to dopus viewer and viewer pane



edit: made image thumbnail
« Last Edit: August 10, 2010, 02:00:30 PM by tomos » Logged

Tom
superboyac
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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2010, 12:17:27 PM »

That's nice!  I'm actually more concerned about the fonts than anything else.
I do like what you've done on the left there..what is that, by the way?  Are those drives?  Did you just take the drive buttons and stack them vertically?  it looks like you have a couple of things there that are not drives.  how did you do that?
I like that because now that I think about it, I don't really use the tree, so it's just wasting space.  I should just use something like you.
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Eóin
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« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2010, 12:26:03 PM »

Personally I install the new Vista cleartype fonts on my XP machines and then set Candara or Calibri as the main application font. The trend these days seems to be towards using a larger default fontsize. Vista and even Ubuntu are very guilty of that. I find using a small fontsize makes things look much more elegant.

I don't really use XP these days, so my Win7 setup won't help you much. But I recommend checking out lassekongo83's deviantART gallery of XP styles.
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superboyac
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« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2010, 01:12:49 PM »

I've been considering upgrading to Windows 7.  I like the calibri font.  I think you're right, things are looking nicer when they are bigger.  back in the crt monitor days, I liked things small to maximize screen space.  but now, monitors are so large and I have dual 24" monitors, that larger fonts make sense.
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40hz
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« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2010, 01:42:40 PM »

For XP, I'm partial to Vishal's SevenVG Black RTM theme with the "normal task bar."

I use the Aero32 color scheme in the theme, and mod it by setting the wallpaper to a nice 'almost black' slate gray color that looks particularly nice on my monitors.

FWIW, I've found the readability of fonts is directly related to how many colors (and gradients ) are being employed in the theme. I try to stick to as few (and complimentary) colors as possible to avoid that color "vibration" thing you sometimes experience with super-saturated themes. I find Tahoma very readable for interface use as long as it has decent contrast with whatever it's displayed on/against.

My basic rule of thumb is: the more beautiful and rich the colors, the harder and more tiring everything is to read and look at over extended periods of time.

There's a lot to be said for all those old classic System 6.0.4 Macintosh gray/mono themes and "paperwhite" displays. They looked great under office fluorescent lighting. And you could stare at them for hours without feeling ill. I've long suspected one of the reasons Macintosh was able to ultimately claim the desktop publishing app space was because its screens were so much easier to read than that eye-drilling "bright green on black" that the old-guard typesetting crowd was used to working with.

 Kiss

For Windows 7, I just turn off all the Aero bling and go with a toned down version of one of the classic-type themes. Although the default theme that gets installed with Win 7 is also pretty nice, as well as being easy to look at for extended periods of time. Lately, I've found myself just using that after I kill the desktop wallpaper image.

As time goes on I've discovered I'm becoming less and less interested in fiddling with the desktop appearance and fancy launchers like Circle Dock or Rocket Dock. Nowadays, I'm mostly interested in just getting in there, getting stuff done, and then logging off.

I've revamped my entire approach so that now I'm much more tightly focused and intense whenever I use a computer. I don't spend anywhere near as much time on my system as I used to. But oddly enough, I think I'm actually accomplishing much more now that I'm no longer starting at a screen 10+ hours a day. Maybe C. Northcote Parkinson's famous "law" was right after all?

True, my new approach doesn't save me from those occasional multi-day marathon writing sessions. But it has cut down on the total time I'm on my system.


Must be getting old...   embarassed


« Last Edit: August 10, 2010, 02:07:20 PM by 40hz » Logged

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Eóin
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« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2010, 02:14:29 PM »

[shameless_plug] For Windows 7 themes I recommend Slate or Linear  Wink
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superboyac
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« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2010, 02:21:05 PM »

[shameless_plug] For Windows 7 themes I recommend Slate or Linear  Wink
Nice!  both of those look really great.  I think a Windows 7 upgrade is in store for me in the coming months.
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superboyac
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« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2010, 02:23:45 PM »

What's up with my line smoothing (anti-aliasing?)?  Look at the picture below, it's so jagged and rough.  Is this normal?
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40hz
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« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2010, 02:27:28 PM »

[shameless_plug] For Windows 7 themes I recommend Slate or Linear  Wink

+1 Thmbsup with SBoy

Very nice.

Who woulda thunk our Eóin was one of the "deviants." Great site.

I've never worked up the nerve to put one of my paltry artistic efforts up there with all that real art talent.

Bravo! Thmbsup  
« Last Edit: August 10, 2010, 02:30:17 PM by 40hz » Logged

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superboyac
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« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2010, 02:29:47 PM »

+1 Thmbsup

Very nice.

Who woulda thunk our Eóin was one of the "deviants." Great site.

I've never worked up the nerve to put one of my paltry artistic efforts up there with all that real art talent.

Bravo! Thmbsup   
Yeah, I was always discouraged when i was browsing their galleries while I was trying to do the fantasy art.
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40hz
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« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2010, 02:33:21 PM »

^Know what you mean. I'd probably be far more likely to try and hire or contract one of these folks than I'd be to share gallery space with them.

Some of the stuff on DA is absolutely stunning. *sigh*
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tomos
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« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2010, 03:24:12 PM »

[shameless_plug] For Windows 7 themes I recommend Slate or Linear  Wink

ooohh! Slate is really nice  Thmbsup
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Tom
tomos
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« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2010, 03:27:16 PM »

What's up with my line smoothing (anti-aliasing?)?  Look at the picture below, it's so jagged and rough.  Is this normal? (see attachment in previous post)

mine looks exactly the same... :-(
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Tom
superboyac
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« Reply #14 on: August 10, 2010, 03:53:26 PM »

What's up with my line smoothing (anti-aliasing?)?  Look at the picture below, it's so jagged and rough.  Is this normal? (see attachment in previous post)

mine looks exactly the same... :-(
Hmmm...that sucks.  I was hoping it was a problem i could fix.  Yet another area where Mac excels and Windows doesn't (we're talking out of the box here, not after tweaking).  If you look at a Mac monitor, you'll notice immediately how much more elegant the things look.  I know PC people will debate that, but the line smoothness is much nicer than on a typical XP install.  I'm hoping win7 will be better with the new fonts and improved visual features.
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tomos
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« Reply #15 on: August 10, 2010, 04:35:30 PM »

What's up with my line smoothing (anti-aliasing?)?  Look at the picture below, it's so jagged and rough.  Is this normal? (see attachment in previous post)

mine looks exactly the same... :-(
Hmmm...that sucks.  I was hoping it was a problem i could fix. [...]

it could well be fixable - I just dont know how. I didnt have clear type turned on - I have now & it still looks the same Wink

I wonder if mac hardware/software is that much better - my monitor is fairly good & most stuff looks very good on it - they possibly just avoid graphics that will look like crap (I mean look at MS's history of lovely graphics Cry )
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Tom
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« Reply #16 on: August 10, 2010, 07:23:14 PM »

I do like what you've done on the left there..what is that, by the way?  Are those drives?  Did you just take the drive buttons and stack them vertically?

Just drag the appropriate toolbar to wherever you'd like it in the lister - you need to make sure the toolbar drag bars are turned on.



Quote
it looks like you have a couple of things there that are not drives.  how did you do that?

See my post here for my drive toolbar which adds things that aren't drives.

EDIT: To turn on toolbar drag bars you need to unlock the toolbars, ie. Right-click on a vacant spot on a toolbar and untick 'Lock the Toolbars'.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2010, 03:19:15 PM by 4wd » Logged

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tomos
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« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2010, 04:30:43 AM »

I do like what you've done on the left there..what is that, by the way?  Are those drives?  Did you just take the drive buttons and stack them vertically?

Just drag the appropriate toolbar to wherever you'd like it in the lister - you need to make sure the toolbar drag bars are turned on.
 (see attachment in previous post)
Quote
it looks like you have a couple of things there that are not drives.  how did you do that?

See my post here for my drive toolbar which adds things that aren't drives.

sorry superboyac, I missed those queries embarassed
thanks 4WD for answering! I actually set it all up (or most of it) manually years ago myself.

There are a few tricks that I'm no longer sure how to do -
~ 'pushing' the buttons in the toolbar to the top and bottom of the window (but adjusting to window size) but maybe that happens naturally, I dont know.
~ keeping the toolbar from getting wide (I like the narrowness of the column in my one) - I think that might be simply keeping the text content short (?)

They're mostly drives, the first two are Arbeitsplatz & Eigene Dateien (a hangover from my last XP which was in german = My Computer & My Docs)
CD is optical drive
P is (left/right click) programme folder/ portable 'install' folder
S is software-download-folder / screenshots folder
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Tom
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« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2010, 12:46:45 AM »

Not trying to be spammy, but I really do have a good collection of WinXP themes on my blog. These are my personal favorites.

http://www.instantfundas....hemes-for-windows-xp.html
http://www.instantfundas....ul-windows-xp-themes.html
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40hz
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« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2010, 07:25:10 AM »

Not trying to be spammy, but I really do have a good collection of WinXP themes on my blog. These are my personal favorites.

http://www.instantfundas....hemes-for-windows-xp.html
http://www.instantfundas....ul-windows-xp-themes.html

Some great finds! (Nice blog too.) Glad to see my old fav Aurum again.

SoWhite and Silence are tempting me as we speak.  Grin


( Rather exquisite redhead on one of those wallpapers too! Always a big plus AFAIC.  Wink  embarassed  )
« Last Edit: August 12, 2010, 09:42:30 AM by 40hz » Logged

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« Reply #20 on: August 12, 2010, 10:51:06 AM »


Some great finds! (Nice blog too.)

Thanks.

Quote
( Rather exquisite redhead on one of those wallpapers too! Always a big plus AFAIC.  Wink  embarassed  )


A semi-clad beauty always increases the oomph factor of the theme.
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tomos
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« Reply #21 on: August 12, 2010, 11:13:28 AM »

Quote
( Rather exquisite redhead on one of those wallpapers too! Always a big plus AFAIC.  Wink  embarassed  )

A semi-clad beauty always increases the oomph factor of the theme.

makes it more difficult to see though smiley
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Tom
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« Reply #22 on: August 14, 2010, 07:20:19 AM »

I am not a fun of skinning but that is the only theme I can use: SlanXP.
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superboyac
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« Reply #23 on: August 14, 2010, 02:40:41 PM »

I am not a fun of skinning but that is the only theme I can use: SlanXP.
That is a great theme.  Just beautiful.
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« Reply #24 on: August 16, 2010, 04:36:28 PM »

I've tried dozens of themes over the years but have always stuck with b0se Classic Final v2. I've found nothing easier on the eyes than the Ergonomic variation.
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