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Modifying Visual Effects

Friday, April 13th, 2007 by | Filed Under: System Tune-Up Help
 
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Modifying Visual Effects

When I chose today’s tip topic of visual effects, I tried a lot of different programs before arriving at the one below. I’m just telling you this so you know that you’re getting the crème de la crème. I can guarantee it!

First off, I’ll show you this really cool program called Glass2K. It allows you to, as you might guess, make your computer windows transparent. You know, like glass. Many programs allow you to do this, including another one I’m going to show you today, but I think Glass2K does the best job. The ability to make a window transparent can be very useful, in addition to looking awesome. I mean, how many times have you ever had to keep moving windows around to view certain data? It can be a big pain, but now, you won’t ever have to worry about it again!

1.) To begin, download Glass2K here. When the file has downloaded, just open it up. A Glass2K splash screen will display, followed by the Settings window.



As you can see, Glass2K is also in your taskbar.

2.) I suggest, in the Settings window, that you select Glass2K to run on start up. You can change the hotkeys below, but I left them alone. Finally, you can select how transparent you want your taskbar to be.

3.) When you have finished making your selections, click the Save button.

4.) Now, to glassify a window, enter your hotkey, followed by the number of zero to nine. By default, the hotkey is Ctrl + Shift and the numbers zero to nine indicate how transparent you would like the window to be. (For example, one is the most transparent and zero is opaque). You can also right click anywhere in the open window and a pop up menu will appear.

I like to use Glass2K to make the Calculator program transparent, especially when I’m in Microsoft Excel. That way, I can crunch numbers and enter them in at the same time, without all the hassle.

So, onward we go to this next program! The next visual effect download is called FreeShade. If you’ve ever used an Apple computer, you may have noticed the ability to roll up a window, like this:

Cool, huh?! It’s much easier than reading the programs of the taskbar, because sometimes, you just can’t see the entire file name.

1.) Go ahead and download the program from this link and install the program using the onscreen instructions.

2.) When you’re done, there will be two new icons on your computer. One opens FreeShade and the other closes it.

3.) To roll up a window, just double click the caption bar at the top of the window. When you are done with Free Shade, select the close icon from your desktop or from the Start menu.

Finally, the last download of the day is without a doubt my favorite visual effects modification program and it’s called WindowsFX. If you love “eye candy,” animations and fancy transitions as much as I do, I know you’ll love this program! Many of these special effects are found in Windows Vista too, so let’s check them out!

1.) Download WindowsFX right here and follow the simple installation procedures. WindowsFX is a shareware program software, which means that you must buy the program to unlock certain features. However, the non-purchased version has many great features too.

2.) Once the installation is done, a window will appear. Select Continue and then a settings wizard will appear. That allows you to select what special effects you would like to add.



3.) Just read the description of each special effect and decide whether you would like it or not. Then click Next.

4.) Continue the settings set up in this manner. You can add special effects for when dialogue boxes appear, menus, transitions and if you would like transparencies. However, I still recommend Glass2K for making windows transparent.

After all of these downloads, your computer is sure to look as smooth as ever!

Have fun with this one!

~ Neil Patel

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