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XPize & Vize Rebirth...


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Hello to all, I hope this note finds you well.

I would like to introduce myself and to make all concerned aware of my interest of contributing to the XPize & Vize Rebirth Project.


By trade, I have over 20 years experience in the Advertising and Marketing Industries, working for some of the largest Ad Agencies here in the Chicago-land area, holding various positions such as Art Director, Creative Director, User Experience Director, and most recently, Vice President.

Basically, I am an "ideas man" - this means I am the guy who usually brain-storms and comes up with the idea, design, or concept and then I hand it over to my group of designers, artists, programmers, and developers and let them perform their magic!

Also, for the past 5 years, I've created a successful home-based business, in which I do technology consulting for the Average Joe, a poor-man's "Geek Squad" - just less expensive. Mostly hardware or software upgrades, security enhancements, Virus or Spyware infections, crashes and recovery, slow computers, parental controls, enhancing internet connection speed, tune-ups and the like.

As a side note, one of my most recent projects was dealing with a client that has a "porn addiction".

Using a combination of Open DNS, Content Filtering, Domain Blocking, Adult Site Blocking, Internet Explorer 7's Restricted Zone, HostsMan / HostsServer, and a well-rounded Hosts File - the client could not access his favorite sites - or any "bad" sites for that matter - nor could he figure out how I did it nor could he figure out how to "fix" it - the client's family was very pleased, to be sure!

For the record, I cannot read or write a lick of code to save my life - in any programming language.

My experience with Micro$oft Windows goes as far back as Windows 3.11, "green screens" and first generation dot-matrix printers. Remember them good ole days?

So, you ask yourself, what can this guy offer to the XPize & Vize Rebirth Project?

Project Management, coordination, organization, overall time-line management and a whole bunch of really kick-a** ideas to take this project over the top! Some of my ideas:

Idea #1 - Visual Styles

XPize & Vize are utility programs designed to replace the icons and images that Micro$oft missed.

I think that we have a much larger opportunity here to not only "make-over" a few rooms as such, but to effectively "make-over" most of or the entire house!

Armed with the knowledge that Windows 7 will have the built-in ability to add a custom theme gallery, icons, and custom theme packs:

WinMatrix: http://www.winmatrix.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=19437

I Started Something: http://www.istartedsomething.com/20080806/.../#comment-63202

My thoughts were to add something similar: to add to XPize & Vize additional features that would allow the user "create" their own "custom" visual style from a list of pre-made options by simply either ticking or unticking a check-box.

I understand that there are a few themes and visual styles out there already, such as Black Luna Royale and DarkSide, to name a few? In my opinion we should go in another direction....

Running the risk of upsetting someone, (not purposely) I have to say there is much better work out there in terms of visual styles that will fit into the XPize & Vize Rebirth Project.

I mean, spend some time at browsing at deviantART, WinMatrix, Neowin, CrystalXP, WinCustomize, and the many other "higher-end" customization sites, you will see what I am talking about!

Moving forward, I propose that we ask Vishal Gupta (Microsoft MVP) for permission to use modified versions of his custom visual styles and icons to make this idea more of a reality:

His Gallery: http://vishal-gupta.deviantart.com/gallery/

His Latest Visual Style: http://vishal-gupta.deviantart.com/art/Vis...for-XP-89727046

His Website: www.AskVG.com

Over the years, I have seen many, many different themes, custom icon creations, and visual styles, but his creations are indeed in the top ten!

I was thinking of adding the features to allow the end user to chose only 1 of 5 visual styles, and the have the ability to chose which start menu to use, what kind of start button, size - width (S, M, L, or default) of Title Bar and Task Bar, to have the choice of XP's or Vista's max/min/close buttons in the upper right-hand corner of screen, shellstyle, change explorer toolbar background, choice of icons, etc.

We also have additional options to think of, such as updating changes to the Progress Dialog Box, System Properties, Control Panel, Control Panel Icons and Administrative Tools Icons, Boot Screen, Welcome Screen, Log On / Shutting Down Screen, and the Shutdown/Log Off Dialog Box:



Idea #2 - Performance Enhancements and Tweaks

This forum and other main-stream forums list a wealth of information in terms of tips, tricks, registry tweaks, trade secrets, and the like to improve and enhance the performance of XP and Vista.

Why not incorporate the top 100, well defined "tweaks" into the XPize & Vize Rebirth Project?

It could be set up like something similar to Theorica Software's Safe XP: http://www.theorica.net/

or something like Source Forge's Security & Privacy Complete: http://sourceforge.net/projects/cmia/

or like the "System Optimization" options in IObit's Advanced WindowsCare V2 Personal:


Okay, that's good for starters, you get the idea. Sorry for the length.

I hope that further discussion will take place concerning these ideas.

Thank you for your time,


Edited by CuriousME
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Thanks for your feedback. I've made note of some of your suggestions, but the goal for Version 5 is just getting a stable codebase (The Anolis Project) with which we can build the project on. We're not planning any major list of changes for Windows XP and Vista just yet. Remember that the main goal of xpize is just to get rid of all the non-XP stuff in XP (be it 95-style icons, Win2K-style wizards, and Windows Vista stuff in Internet Explorer 7).

Many of the features you suggest already exist in software like Stardock's WindowBlinds and Object desktop which is the software people should get if they want to heavily customise their Windows installations, whereas xpize really isn't about customisation as it is about "making Windows XP suck less".

But it's true that xpize has been shipping with various optional extras, like the 1st-party Microsoft visual styles, TaskSwitchXP, and the occasional matching wallpaper and screensaver, but it's clear that xpize's extras are "nicities" independent of the product's main goal.

The Anolis Project is FOSS, so anyone is free to make their own (albeit non-commercial) "patcher pack" and ship it with whatever extras they want. There is also the ability for people to make their own "packages" they can use with the distributed xpize. So if you can't wait for us to implement your changes you could always make your own pack and distribute it.

However, understand that for now I don't want the project to succumb to feature-creep. I'll put my foot down and proclaim "No. Not now. Maybe in the future, but right now our plate is full".

Nothing personal, of course. :)

Edited by W3bbo
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The initial post of this thread reminds me of my draft foundable on my projects site (see signature).

As i'm a Delphi coder that doesn't harm with long time of coding i would say that W3bbo startet an awful job with the Rebirth.

Sure if ever 2ize then it can't ever concurize with the others cause of Legacy. But the ideas are sharing ;)

PLEASE don't harm that i write here as not-concerned but this po(in|s)t might be no advertisment. Just a little thought...

Edited by ChrisKuhli
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However, understand that for now I don't want the project to succumb to feature-creep. I'll put my foot down and proclaim "No. Not now. Maybe in the future, but right now our plate is full".

In other words, Poolsharkzz, we can talk about this in a future release (and for a possible position perhaps).

Right now, we have to get the new code base, and stick to the original **patch WinXP/ Vista icons** tasks. Features and others will be considered sometime later.

Right now, I believe W3bbo (who's doing a lot of the new coding) is really, really busy. Give us some time to get things straight and organize everything.

I look forward to the new releases, and I hope you will too ;) .

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To all,

Great, I understand:

Build a solid foundation, make sure the code is completely stable and compatible with SP3 and all, keep "feature-creep" to a very low roar, and finish the project. :yes:

I just see a much bigger picture and a larger role for XPize & Vize, that's all.

We can bounce feature ideas off each other at a later date - no big deal - I can wait to share...

"making Windows XP suck less" was my only goal and intentions - 1000% "less sucks", that is.

Let's see what becomes of the final version, maybe I spoke a little too soon?

I'm also very much looking forward to the new releases! :thumbup

Take care,


PS -

Yes, indeed - Please keep me in mind for a future position - with me, it's all about the "look and feel" of the final, finished product - what the end user sees - and how it fits into the grand scheme of things.

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