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Windows XP Theme Compatibility

Do all these themes work with Windows XP?

Yes, most will work properly but there are a few issues that need to be referenced separately.

XP Compatible Logo: Windows XP Compatible
Windows XP users should only download those themes with our new "XP Compatible" logo next to them. Some of the older themes may also be compatible but... we're not going to say they are until time permits us to check them or compatibility information becomes available.

Default XP Themes Directory:
Windows XP contains a few theme settings straight from the factory, which enables you to change the look and sound of your desktop. That's good because this also means Windows XP comes with support for theme settings. No third party software is required to run various themes on a Windows XP system. However, they do reference theme parts very differently than in the past. Those that have used themes on Windows 95/98/ME/NT and 2000 operating systems should already know that the default directory location is within the Program Files\Plus!\Themes directory, which is coded %ThemeDir% for short. This older directory structure kept everything within a theme all nice and neat within the same directory. Now with Windows XP, this is not the case. We can continue using the %ThemeDir% location to create and distribute themes, which is highly suggested but.... Windows XP default themes are not setup in this manner. The location of various files is too much information to go into detail about here. If you own Windows XP, simply open one of the default theme (*.theme) files with a text editor and you'll see that the code has changed considerably. In short, themes created on older operating systems will work on Windows XP but there are a few minor issues. Continue reading for more information on each individual file issue.

Default XP Screen Saver Directory:
Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows ME systems normally reference screen saver (*.scr) files from the "C:\Windows\System\" directory. However, like all Windows NT based systems including Windows 2000 and Windows XP, the default installation directory for screen saver (*.scr) files is in the "C:\Windows\System32\" directory location by default.

XP Screen Saver Compatibility:
Some themes contain screen savers that may not function properly on Windows XP. This is mainly due to updated DirectX drivers that are now being using by Windows XP. In most cases, this only means you will not be able to use the screen saver so you should just remove or uninstall that part of the theme from the theme package.

XP Web View Images:
The small images seen in the Windows explorer when set to view as a webpage are not changeable, as they were in the past. There is a way to do it but there are no theme managers that support this feature yet.

XP System Logo Screens:
The screens that show when turning a computer off and on are also hidden now and not a theme option.

XP Theme Application:
To actually go about applying a theme in Windows XP requires a few extra clicks and there isn't really a "shortcut" to the main theme application program. Windows XP applies themes using a dll file as a program. It's something most wouldn't know how to dll with. Ahem, bad jock. Anyway, the best way to apply a theme is to browse to the themes directory and open the theme file you wish to use.

XP Theme Application Shortcut:
If you choose to install your themes in the highly suggested "C:\Program Files\Plus!\Themes\" directory location, you may also consider placing a shortcut to the folder itself on your Windows XP desktop or someplace where you can get to it quickly. "Shortcut to Themes"

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