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Yay or nay? Made an app that adds Aero Glass, Start Menu on Windows 10

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.beta    3

I support this idea, I've been using bigmuscle's aero glass software since 8.x and would love to have something with more features.

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Ricku    5

Just upgraded to Win 10 from 8.1 where I was using BM's Aero Glass with great success.  After reading MSFN forum about the multitude of problems with Win 10 and Aero Glass I really don't want the hassle, so I need a better solution.  Your screen image looks great -- exactly what I want!

So come on, neowin, are you convinced by all the positive support here?  Have you commited to making your solution available to us all?  We really want it!  I'm ready to hand over some bucks for it. :yes:

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Noir Angel    4,245
On 4/30/2016 at 7:14 PM, MeowPurr said:

About pricing - I think the community really needs now a reliable solution for Windows customization, not just Aero Glass. In fact, I wouldn't like to be using the Aero Glass theme all the time, ideally I would like to switch themes every month.

I have developed a couple of free and open source projects, including TouchEnabler which in part became the foundation for this Aero Glass project. The problem is that like many other open-source projects, developers have very little time to polish them or even make them usable for regular folks. That's what happened with TouchEnabler, even though it is free and extremely extensible it went unnoticed and commercial solutions surfaced which seem to be far more successful than my little app (I'm also not good at marketing or even just getting the word out). I'm definitely not planning to make a living out of this project, I have a day job as a developer and have a few hours left in the weekend to use for this project. And it's not like you could make lots of revenue out of customization software, even Stardock has moved on. So I'm looking at the possibility of maybe starting a little Kickstarter to fund development of this project from early alpha (today) to a release candidate. And the Aero Glass part is just a tiny feature of it all. I have been researching how to get customization on modern Windows ever since msstyles stopped being supported altogether. Back in 2012, one day I couldn't boot up my main Windows 8 computer because of a seemingly innocuous tiny Windows update. After installing the update, the system wouldn't start because for some reason it needed the vanilla aero.msstyles set as the default theme. Technically speaking, updates introduce new code which in turn need new .msstyles resources that because of poor design make the entire system unable to boot, either by showing a black screen at logon or, more recently, a blue screen. So today, if you have a custom theme and you get a new update (every day as of Windows 10), your computer may not boot up next time. And speaking of Windows 10, msstyles have become such a vestigial feature that as I said earlier most of the system-wide UI is not customizable. To fix this and before adding back Aero Glass I made a new version-independent theme format that in part gets translated to msstyles at run time or is loaded by my library directly; I had to make a new theme editor to go with it not just because of the new format but also since the only existing theme editor (short of hex value editing) is not only paid, closed-source but also has not been updated in more than 4 years. It's all in very early stages and so far all my testing has been done on a VM. Anyway, sorry for the word vomit :s and thank you for your encouraging comments.

If you can make this as good as it looks, and you're not a complete cretin like BigMuscle I'd happy throw a little funding your way. The removal of Aero from Windows is about the only thing I really miss when using W10 and apart from being an annoying primadonna, BigMuscle just doesn't get his libraries updated quickly enough for new releases.

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+Gary7    7,382
On 4/26/2016 at 4:51 PM, warwagon said:

Looking good so far! I love me some glass. I am finding Windows 10 a lot less annoying without glass than Windows 8.

Windows 8 did not need anything to make it look annoying, it came that way.

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DBlake    7
On 5/25/2016 at 3:33 PM, Gary7 said:

Windows 8 did not need anything to make it look annoying, it came that way.

At least DWM in Windows 8.x isn't as near as restrictive as it is in Windows 10 (from a programming aspect).

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patseguin    1,325

Does the OP have an alpha app that we co old test out?

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Mr GRiM    2

Looking great, are you using the msstyles to add the taskbar and start menu back?

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AMPSV    24

My vote too like glass

 

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Mr GRiM    2
On 01/05/2016 at 4:14 AM, MeowPurr said:

To fix this and before adding back Aero Glass I made a new version-independent theme format that in part gets translated to msstyles at run time or is loaded by my library directly; I had to make a new theme editor to go with it not just because of the new format but also since the only existing theme editor (short of hex value editing) is not only paid, closed-source but also has not been updated in more than 4 years. It's all in very early stages and so far all my testing has been done on a VM. Anyway, sorry for the word vomit :s and thank you for your encouraging comments.

I would love to do some testing for you, I have been creating custom themes for Windows 7 8 and 10, I have been able to add back the classic start menu and taskbar to the msstyles to be used with StartIsBack, I have been asking to add more features back but it seems he is not interested as it's not really what his program was intended for, I would be happy to provide custom themes to use with your program if it's possible to do so.

 

While I also like the idea of an updated theme builder, I have become very familiar with Windows Style Builder and I have adapted it to use with Windows 10 and I have even made it possible to import themes from windows 7 and 8.

 

Currently I am still using Windows 8 as my daily driver as I have not been able to get the customization on 10 to a point where it's appealing enough to use as well as the constant updates that break any customization you do manage to achieve.

 

All my testing on Windows 10 has currently been on a VM so I am not afraid to break things as it only takes a few seconds to recover using a snapshot, I also have a Customization website called Virtual Customs and I have thousands of members that would be interested in this project and I would be happy to promote your product there.

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DrainTheSw4mp    93
19 hours ago, Mr GRiM said:

Looking great, are you using the msstyles to add the taskbar and start menu back?

Sadly it's not possible( at least on those two) to get any sort of theming from msstyles, since the UI is basically hardcoded on vanilla Windows 10. The only way is third party software.

 

On 5/31/2016 at 6:13 PM, patseguin said:

Does the OP have an alpha app that we co old test out?

19 hours ago, Mr GRiM said:

I would love to do some testing for you, I have been creating custom themes for Windows 7 8 and 10, I have been able to add back the classic start menu and taskbar to the msstyles to be used with StartIsBack, I have been asking to add more features back but it seems he is not interested as it's not really what his program was intended for, I would be happy to provide custom themes to use with your program if it's possible to do so.

 

While I also like the idea of an updated theme builder, I have become very familiar with Windows Style Builder and I have adapted it to use with Windows 10 and I have even made it possible to import themes from windows 7 and 8.

 

Currently I am still using Windows 8 as my daily driver as I have not been able to get the customization on 10 to a point where it's appealing enough to use as well as the constant updates that break any customization you do manage to achieve.

 

All my testing on Windows 10 has currently been on a VM so I am not afraid to break things as it only takes a few seconds to recover using a snapshot, I also have a Customization website called Virtual Customs and I have thousands of members that would be interested in this project and I would be happy to promote your product there.

I have so much more stuff to show, I have actually been able to finally add theming to the immersive UI! 

It's not that I have an issue with releasing beta software, but at the moment my program is quite complex and putting all the pieces together and wrap it into an installer would demand a lot of time that I rather use to get a functional beta first.

 

19 hours ago, Mr GRiM said:

I would be happy to provide custom themes to use with your program if it's possible to do so.

Sounds great! I'm not a very good skin designer myself so I'll definitely be needing custom themes. I am developing this program with customization in mind. People really need to understand that it's your computer and you can do whatever you want with it and make it look just like you want it to. I want to (eventually) add a .ini file where you can change and tweak every single variable UI-wise. That would be the ultimate goal.

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Tweaker    1
On 6/2/2016 at 0:01 AM, AMPSV said:

My vote too like glass

 

You have my vote too! Can't wait!

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kalel83    175

Is this still being worked on? Hoped a alpha/beta version would be available by now.

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+John.    1,396
4 minutes ago, kalel83 said:

Is this still being worked on? Hoped a alpha/beta version would be available by now.

He's only one guy! Check his reply only on Friday. Definitely still being worked on. 

 

@MeowPurrTake as long as you need. I'd rather have a good product later than a half-baked one sooner.

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nutellarlz    0

Definitely seems like something I'd like to support. But take your time ironing it out before you release it. I've released half-finished software before and it died before I could really get the projects off the ground. Keep up the hard work.

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Noir Angel    4,245
On 6/3/2016 at 4:02 AM, MeowPurr said:

It's not that I have an issue with releasing beta software, but at the moment my program is quite complex and putting all the pieces together and wrap it into an installer would demand a lot of time that I rather use to get a functional beta first.

Bigmuscle just put his libraries in a rar file then added a registry file for people to self install them, wouldn't that allow for quick and easy beta releases without having to bundle an installer?

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DBlake    7

Any movement on this? I'd hate to see it fade into oblivion.

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Ricku    5
7 hours ago, DBlake said:

Any movement on this? I'd hate to see it fade into oblivion.

I agree.  Especially since the end of the "free upgrade to Windows 10" is rapidly approaching.  It would be desirable to have this option available so that when I finally upgrade my 'Windows 7' and 'Windows 8.1 with Aeroglass' machines, the full glass with blurring effect can be immediately installed.  I have one Windows 10 machine that automatically upgraded without my permission and refused to allow me to return it to 8.1, and the lack of glass with blurring leaves that machine looking dull and listless next to everything else.  It's been over two months since the OP started this thread and tantalized us all--any updates at this time, MP?  :)

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Obi-Wan Kenobi    1,121

Meh, I'll believe it when I see it running on my machine. 'Til then, I'll just take it as a troll, and look for other alternatives. (And if I'm wrong, I'm sorry)

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Flappysquirrel    3

I think If you only managed to bring back Aero Glass for build 14393+, that would already satisfy 90% of the users here. I'd also be more than happy to throw money at your face.

 

But please be aware of feature creep, especially when it comes to fixing your stuff in the future. You could argue that it's a much better idea to do few things exceptionally well than to accomplish a lot of stuff half-assed.

 

Two examples that really stood out to me are Bvckup 2 by Alex Pankratov, and Startisback++ by Stanislav Zinukhov.

Edited by Flappysquirrel
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TwentyØnePenguins    0

Is this project still going? I love the look of it, and it's definitely something I'd use.

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Xahid    5,359
On 6/3/2016 at 8:02 AM, MeowPurr said:

Sadly it's not possible( at least on those two) to get any sort of theming from msstyles, since the UI is basically hardcoded on vanilla Windows 10. The only way is third party software.

 

I have so much more stuff to show, I have actually been able to finally add theming to the immersive UI! 

It's not that I have an issue with releasing beta software, but at the moment my program is quite complex and putting all the pieces together and wrap it into an installer would demand a lot of time that I rather use to get a functional beta first.

 

Sounds great! I'm not a very good skin designer myself so I'll definitely be needing custom themes. I am developing this program with customization in mind. People really need to understand that it's your computer and you can do whatever you want with it and make it look just like you want it to. I want to (eventually) add a .ini file where you can change and tweak every single variable UI-wise. That would be the ultimate goal.

Hello, I think you have done something useful after all these months? or maybe you just lost the interest to release?

Personally, I love the Windows 7 Aero Start Menu, and love to see it working in Windows 10.

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ultimate99    55

This project dead?

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Brandon H    3,506
10 minutes ago, ultimate99 said:

This project dead?

pretty sure it's dead yes

 

as an alternative I used to use the following for glass on 8/8.1 and for a bit on 10 as well; seems more reliable than a lot of the other projects from my experience.

it's been a few years since i've used it as well so it's likely only gotten more stable :)

 

http://www.glass8.eu/

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Steven P.    14,999

Border look really off in Redstone 3 (Fall Creators Update)

 

SNAG-0031.png

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Brandon H    3,506
20 minutes ago, Steven P. said:

Border look really off in Redstone 3 (Fall Creators Update)

 

SNAG-0031.png

does it look like that elsewhere or just Chrome? I'd lean toward blaming chrome because they don't use the native windows borders and their overwrite seems to be coded weirdly (if you compare to any other windows the min/max/close buttons are farther to the right on the UI in chrome and boarders are thinner)

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