Win10: Customizing the Default Aero Theme


So you made it this far, now let’s see what damage we can do by changing Aero.theme

Modifying the Windows Theme

Some settings for Login and Wallpaper are actually part of the Windows Theme which is located at C:\Windows\Resources\Themes\aero.theme.  By default you should have a Windows Theme in Control Panel > Personalization

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Theme Section
The first change that we can make is to change the Name of the Theme to Corporate.  The Before and After is separated below.

[Theme]
; Windows - IDS_THEME_DISPLAYNAME_AERO
DisplayName=@%SystemRoot%\System32\themeui.dll,-2013
SetLogonBackground=0

Additionally I will change the SetLogonBackground from 0 to 1.  This tells the Theme not to change the Logon Screen, although this shouldn’t matter if you had disabled it in my previous post.

[Theme]
; Windows - IDS_THEME_DISPLAYNAME_AERO
;DisplayName=@%SystemRoot%\System32\themeui.dll,-2013
;Segura - Disabled Default DisplayName, Renamed to Corporate
;Segura - Changed SetLogonBackground=0 to SetLogonBackground=1
DisplayName=Corporate
SetLogonBackground=1

This results in the following change in Personalization

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Desktop Section

A simple change of the Wallpaper entry allows the removal or a change to whatever we want.

[Control Panel\Desktop]
Wallpaper=%SystemRoot%\web\wallpaper\Windows\img0.jpg
TileWallpaper=0
WallpaperStyle=10
Pattern=

You cannot remove this section from the Theme (or it will be invalid) but you can set the Wallpaper to blank.  Here is my modification with added entries so you understand what the values are.

[Control Panel\Desktop]
Wallpaper=
 ; The path to the wallpaper picture can point to a 
 ; .bmp, .gif, .jpg, .png, or .tif file.
TileWallpaper=0
 ; 0: The wallpaper picture should not be tiled 
 ; 1: The wallpaper picture should be tiled
WallpaperStyle=10
 ; 0: The image is centered if TileWallpaper=0 or tiled if TileWallpaper=1
 ; 2: The image is stretched to fill screen
 ; 6: The image is resized to fit screen while maintaining aspect ratio.
 ; 10: The image is resized and cropped to fill screen while maintaining aspect ratio.
Pattern=
 ;https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc978618.aspx

Removing all Wallpaper entries results in Desktop Color being used, which is set to 0 0 0 (Black RGB) by default.

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In this case, I will simply create a new section ([Control Panel\Colors]) and add the following entry, which is an Orange RGB color (for testing obviously)

[Control Panel\Colors]
Background=240 120 0

And now I have a colored background whenever this Theme is used.

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AutoColorization

Now we get into some fun stuff.

[VisualStyles]
Path=%ResourceDir%\Themes\Aero\Aero.msstyles
ColorStyle=NormalColor
Size=NormalSize
AutoColorization=0
ColorizationColor=0XC40078D7

Changing the AutoColorization from 0 to 1 changes the system from specific Accent Color

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To one that is Automatically selected depending on the Background

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I don’t suggest doing this as you have no control as to what colors changes.  Colorization is used in Start Tiles, Notification Center, and Logon and Logoff.  Here is a before and after of my Start.  As you can see the Blue tiles changed to Grey

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And now my Logoff is grey as well.  So leave this setting at 0.

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Colorization

Now we get to the Colorization Color.  The default is 0XC40078D7.

[VisualStyles]
Path=%ResourceDir%\Themes\Aero\Aero.msstyles
ColorStyle=NormalColor
Size=NormalSize
AutoColorization=0
ColorizationColor=0XC40078D7

We can decipher this by converting the HEX to DEC values using Calculator in Programmer mode.  This translates to:
C4 = 196
00 = 00
78 = 120
D7 = 215

Which is a Transparency, Red, Green, and Blue value

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Does this look familiar?

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For the sake of testing, I am going to change this to a Green color with RGB 0 255 0, which should convert to HEX of 0xC400FF00.

[VisualStyles]
Path=%ResourceDir%\Themes\Aero\Aero.msstyles
ColorStyle=NormalColor
Size=NormalSize
AutoColorization=0
ColorizationColor=0xC400FF00

Now I will shutdown and restart the computer, the Logoff Background is now changed

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As well as the Logon Screen

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And most of my tiles in Start as well

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Now going back into Themes, you have your customized Corporate Theme that is applied by default.

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Once you have your Corporate Theme, you can delete the Windows 10 and Flowers theme by deleting C:\Windows\Resources\Themes\Theme1.theme and C:\Windows\Resources\Themes\Theme2.theme.

Additionally you can disable changing this Theme in Group Policy

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Which makes things rather grey

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