Make Vista Look Like Windows 7 for Free

Posted November 7, 2008 by Rob Rogers in Microsoft Vista

Last Updated on

Gettng tired of the look of your Vista desktop? By using MSStyles, a wallpaper change, a simple change to your Sidebar and a small registry change, you can have your Vista looking like the Windows 7 interface.

To make things simple (and to maintain a transparency effect when your windows are maximized), download and install VistaGlass as described here.

1. You need to download the Windows 7 for Vista theme by giannisgx89 at Deviantart.

2. Make sure that you are running Aero.

3. Open export the Windows M3 directory from the RAR file to C:\Wiondows\Resources\Themes.

4. Open the Windows M3 directory and double-click on Windows M3.msstyles.

5. When the Appearance Settings window appears, select Apply and then click the OK button.

You can find the wallpaper at istartedsomething (either 1600×1200 or 1920×1200).

Desktop Gadgets:
To hide your Sidebar, but keep your Gadgets, follow these quick steps:

1. Drag any Gadgets you wish to use, from the Sidebar to the desktop.

2. Once the Gadgets have been moved, right-click the Sidebar and select Close Sidebar.

To change the Taskbar to show icons only for open applications:
Vishal Gupta at shows you how to modify your registry and add a WindowMetrics value to gain the effect.

Just unzip the reg file, right-click it and select Merge.

After the registry has been changed, log off your system. When you log back on, the effect will be in place.

When you are finished, your Vista will go from looking something like this:

to something like this:

Here’s a closer look at the Taskbar:


About Rob Rogers

Once a prolific author here on Tech-Recipes, Rob has moved on to greener pastures.
View more articles by Rob Rogers

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