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How do I go about removing the simulated glare from the Windows 7 taskbar? Shrinking it a little and tightening up the display of icons wouldn't hurt either.

I'd also like to remove the Windows logo, in the image you can see how it partially obscures my terminal sessions.

(I'd rather not completely disable Aero, but I'm tempted.)

taskbar glare and logo

Attached the after-photo:

After photo

Pinned to my taskbar is a link to wscript.exe calling start.vbs:


set wShell=wscript.createobject("wscript.shell")
wShell.sendkeys "^{ESC}"
Set WshShell = Nothin

I stole the code from somebody on the net, can't recall where.

BTW, I love this site. Lots of helpful answers even the ones which weren't 100% on. Thanks everyone!

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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

After a long search, I settled on adRiMai's unclutter! custom theme. Among other things, it removes the glare and can remove the Windows logo.

The idea behind this theme is make everything more clean, more simple, uncluttered!

... I make aero more transparent... I "deleted" some unuseful things, like borders on caption buttons. Why you need them? (don't get mad, try the new ones!). I change the "blue sky" on a lot of windows resources for white, black or gray ones.

Any unofficial theme that modifies Window's visual style requires some system modification (detailed installation instructions are on the Deviant Art page above.)

  • At a minimum: UxStyle allows custom visual styles to be used. A work-around to circumvent the digital signatures MS added to themes in order to keep the Windows branding intact, UxStyle does not modify any system files on the harddrive; it waits until the files have been loaded into (RAM) memory.
  • Additional optional modifications enable even more extreme changes, like making the Windows orb completely invisible.

Note sometimes there are issues with custom themes not working correctly after Windows update. Some combinations of rebooting, uninstalling/reinstalling UxStyle, enabling/disabling the unclutter! theme usually gets it working again.

Update: the following steps seem to successfully restore the custom theme after Windows Update:

  1. Switch to Windows 7 Basic theme
  2. Reboot
  3. Switch to unclutter! theme

Note if any changes were made to the unclutter! theme, the "unsaved theme" still fails to work, so all the changes will have to be re-applied to unclutter! theme.

For those with the inclination, adRiMai provides all the resource files to create your own version of this mod.

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It's almost perfect. It's a shame that it's so hard to do something so simple. I wasn't able to get their "start orb" tool to hide the orb, but I did find "Start Killer" and replaced the start button with a link to a wsh script. tordex.com/startkiller/index.html –  mgjk Jun 7 '11 at 0:15
    
Windows update just borked my custom theme again, but I think I figured out the proper incantation to restore it: Switch to the non-Aero Basic Theme, reboot, then switch back to unclutter! –  Leftium Jun 30 '11 at 2:48
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Or you could use the safe, easy, supported, intended method:

Turn off small icons:

enter image description here

et viola:

enter image description here

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