How To Make Windows Look Like A Mac
Steve Grenier's Guide For Making Windows Look Like A Mac
- Applying The WB Theme
- Changing Schemes
- Aqua vs. Graphite
- Titlebar Buttons
- Start Menu
- Extra Programs
- My Mac OS X Tiger Desktop
The following is for Windowblinds themes made by me (Steve Grenier),
skins made by other authors may differ.
Applying The WB Theme
This is a very easy process, but I felt the need to add it so people know
don't email me saying it doesn't work.
First off, you need to have Windowblinds installed, the latest version
is always best to have. Now before you install the theme make sure
you don't have any other version of the theme installed. This is
mainly directed at the Beta Testers who had tested the theme
during it's creation. Now, you can apply the theme you download from
the bottom of this article. Simply double click or open the .wba file you download
and Windowblinds should auto detect the file and install it for you.
If not, open your Windowblinds Configuration. Select Install from
disk and browse for the .wba you downloaded and open it.
There are a couple ways for you to change the schemes in Tiger.
The first way is to open your Windowblinds Configuration, (double clicking
the Windowblinds icon located in the system tray) select Mac OS
X Tiger once selected on the right of that a combo box should
appear. Click the arrow to open the list and there are 2 sub-schemes
for the Aqua scheme. There is the standard Aqua, which is the default
scheme, and there is Graphite. Both classified as the Aqua scheme.
Select the style you want from the menu, Windowblinds will load a
preview of the scheme, if it's the one you would like click Apply
this skin now if your not happy with it, click on the arrow again
and choose a different sub-scheme from the list. The Aqua scheme
is the default theme for Mac OS X Tiger which will be coming
The second way is to open Control Panel, in category view, select Appearance
and Themes. Then under the Pick a task header select Changes
the computer's theme. A new window will open (Display
Properties) select the Appearance tab. Then select
the scheme from the second combo box. The first should have Mac OS
X Tiger selected, if not, select it, then proceed to change the scheme.
This is done very much the same way as when changing the Aqua scheme. Instead of selecting one
of the Aqua schemes (Aqua & Graphite) look for the schemes labeled
Platinum. There are again 2 sub-schemes, Aqua and Graphite. Select
the style you want, view the preview and apply. The Platinum scheme
is new to the Mac OS X interface. It's used mainly in the Mail program
and the System Preferences window.
My personal favorite of all 3 schemes. The Brushed scheme is applied the same way you applied
the other 2 schemes. Select the sub-scheme you want from the menu
and apply. The Brushed scheme is well known throughout the Mac community
and even the Windows community with iTunes. On Mac the Brushed scheme
is used in a variety of places and a variety of shades. iTunes and
iChat both have a lighter shade Brushed scheme then the Finder does.
This scheme is based off the Finder Brushed shade.
Aqua vs. Graphite
As you may (hopefully)
had noticed when changing schemes there are 2 different sub-schemes
for each scheme. The differences between the 2 are as follows. Aqua
has colour and is the most popular of the 2 schemes. Graphite is
a desaturated version of the Aqua with a slight hint of blue and
some minor differences. Generally speaking the difference between
the 2 is that Aqua has colour and Graphite does not.
In the past I had an issue with some users who did not want the full Mac experience and had
grown to used to having their buttons on the right hand side. So
instead of waiting for people to complain I added it by default in
this version. It's very easy to switch between the 2 different styles.
The same way that you change the schemes, instead when you click
the arrow to view the list select the ones labeled (Right)
the ones that are not labeled (Right) are the default which
has the buttons located on the left hand side.
There are 2 different styles of Start Menu's included in Mac OS X Tiger. The first is the standard
Start Menu with all the regular features, Programs list, Places list,
Shutdown/Logoff Buttons, Username, ect. Then there is the Apple Menu
which is made to resemble the Apple Menu found in Mac OS X. Although
it doesn't have many of the same features it at least looks like
it. There is a minor issue with the Apple Menu, you need to be using
Small Icons in the Start Menu for it to look proper. To set
your start menu to use small icons right click an empty space on
your taskbar and select properties. Click the Start Menu tab
located in the top left of the new window that just opened. Then
proceed and click the Customize button located in the bottom
right. A new window will open, in this new window in the top center
you will see the option to select Large icons or Small
icons, select Small icons, click Ok, or Apply
then Ok. Now in order for this Apple Menu to actually be useful
you may need to add a few shortcuts to the list, by default Windows
has Internet Explorer and Outlook Express located at the top of the
Apple Menu, they will be in Bold. Before you start adding shortcuts
to the list you need to find the Applications you want to add. I
suggest, My Computer, My Documents, Control Panel, and Run. Whichever
you choose simply right click the programs and select Create Shortcut
you may want to rename once it's created to remove the Shortcut
to label. Once you have the shortcuts all ready it's easy to
add them. Click and hold the shortcut you would like to add, then
press the Windows key on your keyboard (has a Windows flag on it). Then drag and
drop below a shortcut in the Bold list. By default you would be dropping
your new shortcut below the Outlook Express shortcut. Do this as
many times and you want, to remove a shortcut simply right click
Remove from this list. Once you add all your shortcuts it
will be much more useful and a nice change from the standard Start
There are a few common problems that I can try and clear up here, although there are countless number
of errors you could run into depending on what programs and configuration
I included the fonts that this theme uses in the theme directory (folder)
it should auto install when you apply the theme if you do not have the fonts.
Although it will not replace them if you already have them installed. Now as there are a number
of versions of the Lucida Grande font the theme may look "screwed"
up at some parts. For example those using FlyakitesOSX
there is a known problem with the his version of Lucida Grande. Now
as the majority of the theme looks fine with his version of the font
the tabs however do not, they have a very large gap to the right.
If you have this problem remove your version of Lucida Grande from
your fonts folder (you may have to go
into safe mode depending if it's in use or not) and the install
the version that came with this theme.
Another common problem is when the fonts don't look the same as in my screenshots.
The usual case there is that Cleartype font smoothing is not
turned on. This is easy to change, open Control Panel,
in category view, select Appearance and Themes. Then under
the Pick a task header select Changes the computer's theme.
A new window will open (Display Properties)
select the Appearance tab. Once that loads click the Effects
button. You will see Use the following method to smooth edges
of screen fonts: click the arrow and select Cleartype.
Click Ok, then Ok or Apply and Ok in
the next window. Your fonts should now look like the ones in my screenshots.
If you are having problems with the titlebar buttons having black edges, check and make sure
you have the latest version of Windowblinds installed. The odds are
that you have a version older then 4.2, if you do, upgrade to the
latest, 4.5 or higher.
Another problem some users are experiencing is that the dialog background do not have the lines
on them and that they are a solid colour. That can be changed in
your Windowblinds Advanced Configuration window. On the left
under Settings click Basic Settings. Under the heading, Skin
window backgrounds check off Dialog backgrounds (see Backgrounds
to override). Save and apply and you will now have the lined
If the theme isn't loading properly or some features are missing, delete the theme and make
sure the folder is removed from the Windowblinds directory and then
re-download and install the theme a second time.
Some programs might not look properly with this theme applied, that is mainly due to the
programs design. Windowblinds does it's best to properly skin as
many components as possible but sometimes it just doesn't look right,
that's not a problem that you can fix.
There's no reason why your desktop theme can have all the fun. With a LogonStudio theme you
can change your login screen so it looks like the login screen of
Mac OS X Tiger. This is a great tool to have when you are
looking for the complete Mac experience on Windows, I highly suggest
it. Download LogonStudio here.
To install a logon just double click the .logonxp file you download
and it should auto install and launch LogonStudio.
If you want to add to the
Mac experience I made an Iconpackage last year that is great for
replacing the majority of the system files to match Mac OS X, you
can download it here.
It's a simple thing but it makes it feel more complete, another program
I highly suggest. It's easy to install iconpackages. If they are
.ip you can just double click them and it will install and launch
Iconpackager. If they are in a .zip file, you need to open the archive
and extra the folder inside into your Themes directory which is located
within the Iconpackager folder inside your Stardock directory. You
can download Iconpackager here.
Objectdock is a fantastic application for creating a replica Dock. You can download Mac OS
X Panther Icons here.
Extract them to your Objectdock folder which is usually located within
your Stardock folder, which is in Program Files. The free version
of ObjectDock is all you need to re-create the Mac OS X Dock. Although
the Plus version includes a lot of extra and cool features. This
is a must have when trying to make Windows look and perform like
a Mac. Download ObjectDock here.
Objectbar is the a fantastic program and has a lot of capabilities, my personal favorite is being
about to create a replica Finder bar. The Finder bar is the taskbar-like
bar located at the top on Mac OS X, it also replaces the Menu bar
in Windows. I will be creating a new Objectbar skin to replica Mac
OS X Tiger, but as of right now my latest was Mac OS X Panther which
myself and Ian Black created. Download Mac OS X Panther for Objectbar
and download Objectbar here.
AveDesk is a donate-ware so help show your support to AndreasV and donating
AveDesk will enhance your desktop experience by making your desktop
visually more pleasing and to give the possibility to add interactive
icons and tools, called desklets. In order to download AveDesk you
need to be a member of the website/forum Aqua-Soft
to get the news on the latest versions. If you are already a member
to get all the latest news on AveDesk.
In my opinion it is the best program for Widget's out there. It is incredibly easy to use,
fantastic looking widgets, one of the best widget libraries on the
internet. Fast, and makes your desktop look to good for words. Konfabulator
is share-ware this their site here
and try it out, I'm sure you won't be disappointed.
WindowFX is the program which is best known for it's ability to add Shadows around your Windows.
It also can do a lot more including animations, transitions, and
more. Even if your just using it for Shadows I suggest you give it
a try, it's another one of those must haves when trying to make Windows
look like Mac OS X. Download WindowFX here.\
I personally love this application.
It's fantastic because it can do so much more then the average Windows
XP cursor. Here
you can download a Mac OS X CursorXP theme which will give you the
cursors that Mac's have. If you don't have CursorXP there is also
a standard Windows XP version of the cursors available
I take no credit for making the cursors. I just use them. Download
Trillian itself is a very useful program as it combines all the major chat programs into one
easy to use program. The main reason I use Trillian is so that I
can use the iChat skin made by Daniel Lapointe (Danimator). It's
the closest thing to the real iChat you can get on Windows. Download
his iChat skins here.
Also head over here
to download Trillian.
My Mac OS X Tiger Desktop
A lot of people have been asking what programs am I running and how did I get my desktop to
look the way it does in my screenshot here. So here I am going to
clear it all up so everyone knows. I will post download links to
all the items mentioned at the bottom of this section. To begin,
the theme I am running is Mac OS X Tiger made by myself. It's for
Windowblinds. I have the Brushed Aqua scheme currently running. Next
is the Album Cover and Info. That is a skin created for AveTunes
which is a Desklet for AveDesk. You need to be using iTunes as that
is where it gets it's now playing information from. The skin was
made by NKJ and you can download it at his site in the stuff section.
Then we have my icons and their layout displaying the hard drive
information. That is AveDesk, just using simple Desklets to link
to my hard drives. At the bottom I have ObjectDock. I'm using some
custom icons and the rest are from the Mac OS X PNG icon set that
I posted a link to above in the ObjectDock section of this guide.
The clock and the weather in the bottom corners is Konfabulator.
The weather widget comes default with Konfabulator and the clock
is called World clock, made by Ricky Romero and Harry Whitfield.
That iChat like program is Trillian using the iChat AV skin is created
by Daniel Lapointe and I modded it so it looked better for my personal
use. Another thing people have been asking me was how did I remove
the throbber from my explorer window giving it that clean look. The
answer is I install Flyakite OSX. It is a installer that replaces
parts of your system files that will make it look more like OS X.
It is a fantastic package and I highly recommend you give it a try.
You can uninstall it if it doesn't appeal to you or if you want to
change from the OS X look. The shadow's I'm using are the OSX Perfect
shadow theme created by Magnus Wild for WindowFX. Make sure you check
off "for shaped windows" within the WindowFX Shadow properties.
The Apple Menu shown in the screenshot has shortcuts not buttons.
A lot of asked about the Logoff/Restart/Shutdown shortcuts so I included
them below, extract the folder anywhere and drag the shortcuts into
your start menu. I believe that is everything. If I have missed anything
I will edit this and include them.
Files/Programs Download Links:
Mac OS X Tiger WB Theme - Download here.
Album Cover AveTunes Skin - Download in the "Stuff" section, here.
AveDesk - Download in this Aqua-Soft thread.
iTunes - Download here.
ObjectDock - Download here.
Mac OS X Panther (PNG) Icons - Download here.
Konfabulator - Download here.
World Clock Widget - Download here.
Trillian - Download here.
iChat Trillian Skin - Download here.
Flyakite OSX - Download here.
WindowFX - Download here.
OSX Perfect Shadow For WindowFX - Download here.
Logoff/Restart/Shutdown Start Menu Shortcuts - Download here.
And that is the guide, I hope you found it helped you when using this
theme. For more customization visit Aqua-Soft
and browse through there forums.