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Author Topic: Best Windows 7 desktop background changer?  (Read 16089 times)
jshare
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« on: January 25, 2012, 03:30:01 PM »

I'm looking for Win7 software, preferably freeware, that can randomly choose desktop background images from a directory (and its subdirectories), stretch the image to fill the screen if necessary, and change the desktop background image every X seconds.

I just upgraded my wife's PC to Win7 from XP. On XP, she was using an old XP Powertoy to change the desktop background images every 3 seconds, and the images were being chosen from a large directory hierarchy of family pictures. This way, our second monitor became a large digital photo frame when it wasn't being used for DVDs, and we often found ourselves and/or our kids watching the pictures.

Win7's own background image settings allow an automatic image change every 10 seconds at least, but the images can only be taken from a single directory and not a directory hierarchy such as our family photos of the past 10 years. Although, if anyone knows some registry hacks to change this, I'm interested.

A good resource is this: http://www.techsupportale...ree-wallpaper-changer.htm

Most of the listed programs there either don't support time intervals lower than 1 minute or don't support choosing images randomly from subdirectories or aren't compatible with Win7.

Any suggestions?

Jacob
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Stoic Joker
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« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2012, 04:30:49 PM »

I'm looking for Win7 software, preferably freeware, that can randomly choose desktop background images from a directory (and its subdirectories), stretch the image to fill the screen if necessary, and change the desktop background image every X seconds.

Um... Windows 7 already does that natively. You can go as low/fast as changing the WP every 10 seconds if you like.
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jshare
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« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2012, 02:00:56 AM »

Er... yes, I did say that too smiley

In any case, I need a faster change than every 10 seconds.
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Curt
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« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2012, 02:24:16 AM »

Wallpapers are not meant to be changed that often. What you're asking for in real life may be a screensaver. The two best of both kinds in my opinion are Murphy's automatic wallpaper-changer, AWC, and exisoftware's Endless Slideshow Screensaver Pro. I use both.

http://awc.smurphy.co.uk/ wallpaper-changer, not a screensaver
http://www.exisoftware.co...-screensaver/upgrade.html screensaver
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MikeMcLoughlin
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« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2012, 03:22:35 AM »

Hi Jacob

Try the lite (free) version of this, you won't be disappointed.

http://www.nuonsoft.com/wallpapercycler/

Mike

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jshare
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« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2012, 04:19:52 AM »

Mike- thanks for that. I tried Cycler but it doesn't let me change more frequently than 1 minute.

Curt- actually, I don't need a screensaver because I want the photos changing on Monitor 2 while someone is working on Monitor 1. But thanks a lot! AWC fits the bill perfectly. Awesome.
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Daleus
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« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2012, 07:29:42 AM »

I use "John's Background Switcher" -> http://johnsadventures.co...tware/backgroundswitcher/

It can change every 10 seconds...god help you if that isn't fast enough!

It can show the same pic on multiple monitors or different pics.  I don't use the stretching features, but they are there and there are several of them, so you should be able to find what you need.

Let us know if that works ouyt for you.

Cheers!
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Curt
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« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2012, 09:26:11 AM »

John’s Background Switcher is really impressive, being freeware.
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jshare
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« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2012, 10:27:22 AM »

John's Background Switcher is impressive for freeware, but the 10 second minimum is too high for my needs.

At first impression, AWC fits the bill although it looks to be unusually CPU-intensive while John's, which seems to use more RAM, barely uses the CPU at all. If I can get John to add a 5 second minimum, or a more flexible way of choosing intervals, I'd be sold.
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cmpm
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« Reply #9 on: January 26, 2012, 10:30:59 AM »

http://www.fastpictureviewer.com/

Fast Picture Viewer in auto-advance mode can do what you want.
It's like 1 second or two per pic, like a slide show, but really fast.
Just drag it to the monitor you want it running on.
It will include all subfolders in auto-advance, and can be full screen.

You will get the full version for 30 days then it will switch to basic.
But the basic version has these options.
Right click FPV's taskbar to get the auto-advance options and more.
After you have selected the folder from the options in the menu.
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jshare
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« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2012, 11:00:34 AM »

Fast Picture Viewer is very cool, and is an option if I could set it to startup automatically in auto-advance mode and always appear in Monitor 2.

Regarding JBS, I just posted in their official forum for a more flexible way of setting time intervals.
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wraith808
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« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2012, 03:27:12 PM »

Mike- thanks for that. I tried Cycler but it doesn't let me change more frequently than 1 minute.

Eh?  Unless that's a limit of the free one, I don't understand.



And it works perfectly well.  And it doesn't seem to be on the list of limitations...

Quote
Freeware Limitations

Wallpaper Cycler Lite is a freeware version. The freeware version of Wallpaper Cycler has the following limitations but can be used as a fully functional basic wallpaper cycler. The freeware version is not time limited.

No layout system (because of this: no quotes, no calendars, no RSS feeds, no notes...).
No tags.
No search folders.
No effects system.
No gradient and URL wallpapers.
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jshare
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« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2012, 02:26:52 AM »

Actually you're right. I guess I got it mixed up with one of the others that I tried. But whenever I try to add my image directory hierarchy, it crashes. Every single time, and I tried 5 times, with variations each time. This was using Cycler Lite.
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wraith808
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« Reply #13 on: January 27, 2012, 07:34:25 AM »

Actually you're right. I guess I got it mixed up with one of the others that I tried. But whenever I try to add my image directory hierarchy, it crashes. Every single time, and I tried 5 times, with variations each time. This was using Cycler Lite.

I'd contact the developer.  I'm using a lot of wallpapers in a pretty deep folder structure, and I have no problems at all.
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jshare
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« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2012, 12:27:15 PM »

Quote
I'd contact the developer.

Just sent in the bug report. Cycler has its own built-in crash dump file that's generated automatically, smart.
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jshare
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« Reply #15 on: February 28, 2012, 01:55:03 PM »

Followup:
  • Never heard back from the Cycler people
  • I didn't realize that AWC wasn't free. It's not expensive, and it does what I need, but I find it resource-intensive. Using the Win7 Desktop CPU/RAM Meter Gadget, the CPU would spike with every image change, which is every 5 seconds in my case. It was noticeable even without the Meter.

So I'm still looking for another option.
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cmpm
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« Reply #16 on: October 10, 2012, 11:09:52 AM »

'Picture of the Day' is pretty cool.
It downloads from a few pics of the day sites.
Needs an internet connection to download the pics.
And it will access your location info,
which can be blocked.

http://www.xequte.com/other/index.html#potd
{about half way down the page}

I do like the option to save all downloaded pics to a folder of your choice.
Along with the ability to limit the number saved.
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MattCollW
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« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2013, 08:11:51 AM »

the best of the all wallpaper changers presented on this page http://www.techsupportale...ree-wallpaper-changer.htm it definitely is Bionix Wallpaper Changer. i have used most of them and i stopped at  bionix. is perfect. http://www.bionixwallpaper.com/index.html
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Curt
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« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2013, 08:46:07 AM »

-however, the free Bionix does not fit the required set of features. But I guess the "Ultimate" $20 version does; see http://www.bionixwallpape...eme-ultimate-edition.html. Normal price said to be $30

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