In light of today’s giveaway of Folder Maker Pro, I think it is appropriate to create a post about how one can customize the look and feel of Windows to fit his needs.
There are websites, such as Deviantart.com, that display the work of very talented artists. These talented artists create skins, icons, etc. that they allow people to use for free on their computers (usually free anyway). However, the problem always occurs in actually installing these free graphics that are generously provided to us. Tuneup Styler is a program that will allows you to do this with ease. Tuneup Styler is actually a component of Tuneup Utilities 2007 (which, now, you can attain for free) so in order to use it you must download Tuneup Utilities 2007. Tuneup Utilities 2007 has much more use then just Tuneup Styler so it is a worthwhile download regardless of if you are interested in customizing the look of your computer.
The main purpose of Tuneup Styler is to allow you to change the icons for folders (system and file folders), drives, and start menu entries. You can change individual icons or icons for a certain group or change the whole icon pack for your whole Windows. If you are on Vista, you will also be able to change the bootup screen, the login screen and skin your Windows.
You can access Tuneup Styler under the “Customize & Analyze” tab in Tuneup Utilities 2007:
This is the Tuneup Styler interface:
You do everything from this interface; explore the options to get to know the program better. The first option “Change icons and the names of…” allows you to change icons of general categories, like .GIF images, and to install icon packs while “Change icons for file systems…” allows you to change icons of individual folders, drives, etc. It is all very easy to do and if you mess up there is always a restore feature that you can fall back to.
As I mentioned earlier, you can find icon packs and skins (if you are on Vista for the skins) that will work with Tuneup Styler from Deviantart.com. However, any icon pack will work with Tuneup Styler, so you are not limited to Deviantart.com (check out Dryicons, SmashingMagizine and VistaIcons also).
As an alternative to Tuneup Styler, you can check out Windows Blinds (there is a free shareware version you can use). Windows Blinds will also allow you to change icons and skin your computer but it supports all Windows skinning, not just Vista. Check out WinCustomize.com for a website to attain many Windows Blinds skins and icons (you are limited in your downloads though and many of them cost money, but some are free). However, Windows Blinds is known to effect performance a little so sticking to Tuneup Styler if at all possible.