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Tips for Customizing Your Windows Desktop

Discussion in 'Tech Tutorials and News' started by Valerie Johnston, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. Valerie Johnston

    Valerie Johnston Techie7 New Member Techie7 Editor

    The following tips will help you to customize your desktop so that you have a better Windows experience. Some of these tips will make Windows more accessible for some users and others are just for looks.

    Finding the Right Wallpaper

    Many users have trouble finding the right wallpaper for their Windows desktop. Most of the time, this comes down to not understanding screen resolution that well. Here’s how it works.

    Your monitor will have a resolution on it that is expressed as two numbers separated by an x. Below, you can see an image of a Windows 8 desktop screen set up with two monitors. The resolution displayed, 1920X1080 refers to monitor number 2, which is selected in the picture.


    When you’re hunting for new desktop wallpaper, make sure that the wallpaper is close in size to your monitor resolution. This ensures that you don’t get pixelation.

    You should also be aware of whether or not your monitor is displaying in HD, which the monitor above is. This means that you’ll want a rectangular image rather than a square one.

    Text too Small

    If you’re having problems reading your screen, it’s very easy to blow up the size of the text a bit so that it is easier to read. To do this, all you have to do is hold on the control key and turn the wheel in between the buttons on your mouse. Turning the button forward will increase the size of text and turning the button backward will decrease the size of text. This works on just about every program, including image editing programs.

    Don’t Like the Color Scheme

    If you don’t like the color scheme on your computer, it is very easy to change it. All you have to do is go to the Start button, and click on your Control panel. Once you’re in the Control Panel, go into the search box and type in the words “Color Scheme”. A link will come up labeled “Change the color scheme”. Click on that and you’ll be taken to another screen, where you’ll click Advanced.

    Look in the Item list and you’ll see all of the various places in Windows were you can change the color scheme. Click on Color. You can pick any color you want and repeat the entire process for every other part of the screen. This applies to Windows 7 and is the preferred method, according to Microsoft.

    On Windows 8, right click anywhere on the desktop and select Personalize. You’ll be brought to a dialog box where you can change, among other things, the color of your desktop. Click on Color on the bottom of the screen and you’ll see the dialog box shown below.


    You have plenty of options here, so be sure to play around and see what really appeals to you. Some people actually have far fewer problems with eyestrain and other computer related issues by toning down the color scheme a little bit so that it isn’t so bright.

    Pin Items to Your Taskbar

    If you want to, you can pin any item to your Taskbar on Windows 7 or Windows 8 by simply dragging the icon for the program down to the taskbar. This allows you to open the program right from the taskbar and eliminates the need to use the start menu.

    This is particularly useful for Windows 8 users, many of whom don’t particularly care to go through the entire process of opening up the Start screen, search or hunt around for their programs and then have to go back to the desktop to use them. If you want to keep things simple, just drag whatever programs you use the most onto the start screen.

    Use Sticky Notes

    Sticky Notes is a windows feature that allows you to create little notes that you can stick to your screen – virtually, of course – that are similar to the little adhesive notes that people used to stick all over offices. These are great tools if you need to leave yourself a reminder or want to save a link off the Internet. If you’re going to drag anything down to your Taskbar, this is a great choice. It’s a lot easier than using Notepad or other programs to make quick note.