Colors/Themes


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Hi! New, old guy here.

I've been working diligently, getting WIN 10-TP installed and customized the way I prefer it. But, one snag I can't seem to overcome are those godawful screen colors. The gray taskbar blends in with the borders on virtually all apps, and the screen as a whole is glaring white, terribly conducive to migraines! It's almost literally like staring into a search light!

I've tried changing themes, but they all seem to have the same absolutely !@#$%! faults. And whoever invented those "High Contrast" themes must certainly be an acid burnout from my generation!

I've tried fiddling with the color controls in the registry (regedit > HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Control Panel > Colors) but the best I've been able to do is change the tabs in the taskbar from one Godforsaken color to another.

So, does anyone have any other suggestions for swapping either the psychedelic nightmare or the gray Hell for something easier on the eyes? And my aching head?
 
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Could you post a screen shot of your desktop?

This is a small rendering of mine, but sufficient for you to see that the colours (my choice) are normal.
Untitled.png
 
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Could you post a screen shot of your desktop? ...
Sorry -

You apparently misunderstood me, and if we’re not careful we’re going to get off on a tangent here. I already know what’s standard and I’m not impressed with Microsoft’s version of it. I was not mass produced in some cooky cutter factory. “Standard,” specifically the ever narrowing, restrictive standard proposed by Microsoft, is as unacceptable as “one size fits all.” Rarely it works well. But, most commonly it just gets us by in some mediocre fashion. Often it’s a complete disaster. And, almost always it’s downright ugly or painful.

Previous versions of Windows supplied quite a number of tweaks, adjustments and customizations. Everything from what colors or color schemes we wanted to use on our desktops to how we wanted our Start menu to look. With each succeeding version of Windows we seem to be losing more and more of those abilities to customize the OS to our preferences, needs, and individual styles. More and more we’re being squeezed into some preformatted box dictated by some socially isolated, nearly clueless, software engineer in Redmond. And in their places we’re given more and more junk that most of us will never use. And, Microsoft’s attitude seems to be, “Suck it up! Deal with it!”

Some philosopher once said, “Without choices you have no freedom. And without freedom, you’re but a slave.” Now that’s a chilling thought, no?

A continuing complaint of mine is the psychedelic Hell Microsoft seems to be galloping towards with day-glo colors and free form menu arrays. I once heard a marketing expert avow that you can sell almost anything by wrapping it in neon colors and advertising it with fireworks, too loud music, and a lot of people dancing around hysterically! Does this sound familiar? Be afraid. Be very afraid! (And now that you know, discriminating as well.)

Back to the original subject, I am seeking one or more of the following from this discussion:

1) A description of where I can go in the registry or some configuration file so that I can change the colors of the visible entities on my desktop. Any and all of those entities. To any color (maybe even color patterns) that I want.

2) A link (URL) to a webpage that would give me that information.

3) A book or other written reference (Yes, they’re still printing these out in the real world. On real paper, no less.) that could tutor me on the techniques.

4) A utility or App (the current buzz word to convince people that I’m not yet fully fossilized) that would allow me to pick and choose, and then do all the dirty work for me. (No, I’m not lazy. I just have better things to do than to waste time correcting Microsoft’s deficiencies.)

I guess what I want is something like what came with XP and earlier Windows versions: a little window showing me what I was changing, and even a list of color ensembles to chose from if I were too lazy to do my own trial and error. I find it almost unbelievable that someone hasn’t written a similar little program for modifying the colors of Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, and now 10, since Microsoft dropped the ball so magnificently. I for one would gladly pay a few shekels for the privilege of using it.

But, thanks for your interest. It’s good to know that someone is paying attention.
 
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Sorry if I am misunderstanding, Stan. You referred to a grey taskbar and " psychedelic nightmare"., and "the screen as a whole is glaring white" That is why I was interested in seeing what desktop flavours you have.

My posted picture was meant only to illustrate that I did not have such. The taskbar in my picture is black by choice, although, on my computer, it is actually a little lighter than that.

You have, of course, been onto the personalisation section of the setting to try and improve your picture?

I don not, at this general beta stage, touch the registry settings, as this obviates the feedback which can be forwarded to MS. But I am sure, with your post, that someone will post you some suggestions regarding registry hacks.
 
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Here's a couple screenshots to give an example. Say we look at a desktop of Win10, build 10130, with 5 windows up (others minimized, not important to the example).

w10-10130.jpeg


Can you even *tell* where one window ends and the next begins? Not even to mention the bloated, oversized and ugly icons that look like they were scribbled by a 2-year-old with a dull crayon.


Compare this to what a decently-designed and themed desktop should look like:

Workspace 1_20150617_001.jpg


Notice how you can give the elements some **TEXTURE**, and can differentiate one part from another. And if you don't like the texture, shading, window borders, colours, etc, you can actually ***CHANGE*** them. You can even change the look of the buttons and scroll bars. Novel concept that Microsoft is quite apparently incapable of comprehending.
 
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In total agreement with your sentiments.
This is, of course, still in development. There are currently about 15 builds after 0130, being worked on. The final version will, I am sure, have more opportunity to adjust eye candy to users satisfaction.

Meanwhile, you do feel strongly about it, so why not send feedback?
 
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I recently updated to the released version of Win 10 home and all the problems and frustrations of Stan Schultz are still there. I support everything he says although I would not use some of the language (his frustration and anger). How can we change the colors for e.g. active title bar, desktop background etc etc etc to something other than the horrendous limited colors in the Personalization?
 

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