Stardock WindowBlinds 5
- Works beautifully, Excellent themes included as standard, Low Cost
- Menus are a little confusing, not enough themes to download.
WindowBlinds 5 is great for people obsessed with tweaking and modding their windows environment. It works well and looks great.
Price$ 19.95 (AUD)
Ever since there has been a Windows program, people have wanted to change the way it looks. Let's face it, Windows XP isn't exactly the coolest or the prettiest operating system around. There are many desktop customisation programs out there and WindowBlinds doesn't exactly stand out from the crowd as such, but it does what it says it will do and does it with style.
WindowBlinds 5 allows a user to apply a theme to their entire desktop environment. Toolbars, wallpaper, icons and theme-effected applications can be customized down the last pixel. The program is a small 9.7MB download and costs only US$19.99 to purchase. However, there is a lite version of the program available from the Stardock website free of charge. The program installs quickly and requires a reboot to become active. Once up and running, you can choose from the 12 excellent themes that come standard or download one of 25 user created themes from WinCustomize.com, a sister site of Stardock.
For the most part, these themes look fairly good but the quality of the theme is definitely dependent on the artist that made it. We particularly liked the Xbox 360 theme although did find it need a little getting used to.
The program is very easy to use although the menu system was a little counter-intuitive and confusing. This confusion was lifted fairly quickly but we still felt it could have been designed a little better.
If you are one of those people that need to customise everything they own, then you are going to love windows blinds. Not only can you customise your desktop with other users designs but you can also download Stardock SkinStudio to make your very own.
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I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
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