Jump to content

Aero for Windows 10 2004+ (Tested on 21H2)


Recommended Posts

Hello, recently I started working on modifying DWM to customize Windows to my tastes, and this is what I've managed to get so far:




I implemented all of this using Windhawk, but I might eventually move it all into its own program. The code is definitely not ready for release (buggy), plus it's still missing a few things that I'd like for an initial release. The blur implementation is also not the best, and I'd rather do it in a way closer to BigMuscle's, since this is based on Valinet's method, which considering was just quickly created to prove that blur is possible in 2004+, has its fair share issues. This can be seen as a proof of concept in a way, maybe a tech demo.

For the buttons, I decided to rewrite both the functions that handle their positions and sizes in DWM, which gives me full control over the implementation. For example, I can modify this mod to make the buttons look the way they do in the Basic theme, Luna theme, even Classic theme, theoretically, all in DWM, meaning that there should be no compatibility issues with applications.

You may have also noticed that the text is missing from the titlebars. That's due to the fact that in Windows 8.1 and 10, the titlebar text is rendered using GDI, and I'm still not sure how to make the background transparent (I've tried using SetBkMode but it didn't seem to do anything). I'll probably end up trying to render the text the same way Windows 7 does, as that's the OS whose look I'm trying to match.

As for a release, I'm not sure when this will be ready. Could be this year, could be next year, it really depends on how much time I have on my hands, especially considering the project's current primitive state.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

if this actually works and gets a proper open-source release unlike a certain program then i might consider using win10 again... maybe, and that is not a statement i make lightly. very promising stuff

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...

An update on this project's development has been posted on my YouTube channel:

Text glow is yet to come, and the blurring is still quite bad, however I believe that this will get to the open beta phase within 2024.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 weeks later...

I noticed when trying out BasicThemer2, which uses functionality built into DWM to activate Aero Basic style window frames, which resources are still in stock Aero theme, that it then actually also follows *.msstyles setting for window title text placement (left, center, right). Did you use the same trick near the end of the video? I guess the text placement for normal theme rendering was always hard-coded, not sure whether it would be "correct" to take that same setting for text placement in "normal mode", though just judging by Explorer windows with ribbon, it should. I haven't checked if this basic mode also allows changing text color, either through the theme or registry settings, but it would be nice if this, along with text placement, was tweakable, in any mode, the basic theme rendering isn't compatible when the app does something with its own frame.


If I remember correctly, the trick BasicThemer2 uses is similar to what compatibility shim DisableThemes does. I came across the utility when searching for info regarding Windows 11's frame/border rendering, last time I checked, it completely ignores theme resources for rendering normal window border, it's just always invisible while Windows 10's DWM renders it as usual. BasicThemer2 was suggested as the workaround as the rendering mode it activates still has normal border around windows. While default theme in Win10 lacks those borders, they are in Aero Lite theme and certain custom themes, as also evident in your video.

So, another thing to consider if you get into tweaking Windows 11's DWM at some point, Windows 11 is catching on as the time passes.

Edited by UCyborg
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...