You don’t have to be a Windows 7 power user to demand the most out of your PC. Here are our top 5 favorite Windows 7 interface tweaks that help you get more out of your PC than you ever thought possible:
5) Change your Windows 7 login screen
Yes, it’s possible to change your Windows 7 login screen. In fact, it’s probably easier than you think. To customize your login screen, you’ll need to go into the Windows Registry and find an entry called:
(To open your Registry, type regedit into the Windows Start menu search bar)
Once you’ve found that entry, double click on the DWORD key called OEMBackground and then set that value to 1. Note: if you don’t see the OEMBackground key, then that’s not necessarily a bad thing: just create it yourself and set the value to 1.
You’re not done yet. You need to find a background image for your login screen. The only catch is that the image needs to be less than 256KB in size and it should also match the aspect ratio of your screen unless you want it to awkwardly stretch.
Now, you’ll need to copy that image into the following folder:
Once again, you can create the info\backgrounds folder if it doesn’t exist. After copying the image into that folder, rename the image to backgroundDefault.jpg and then reboot your system to see your very own custom login image.
4) Disable unnecessary Windows features for a performance boost
Windows has hundreds of features, and that means there are hundreds of features that you probably won’t use. You can easily disable these features for higher PC performance. To do that, simply go to Start and type in OptionalFeatures then press Enter.
From there, uncheck any features that you no longer need. For example, you may not use Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player, Windows Gadgets, and other services. In many cases, these programs start up with Windows whether you need them or not, so feel free to remove them to give your PC a performance boost.
3) Make the Windows 7 taskbar smaller
The taskbar was the most noticeable change in Windows 7 compared to previous versions of Windows. Instead of featuring long, thin program bars, the taskbar now features program shortcuts and large icons. You may feel like the taskbar takes up too much screen space. Fortunately, you can easily reduce the screen space it takes up by right-clicking on the Start button > Properties > Taskbar > Use small icons > Apply
Your taskbar will now use significantly smaller icons, giving you more screen space to work with.
2) Make text easier to read
If you have reading problems or sit a long ways away from your PC monitor, then you may not be able to read smaller text on your PC. Fortunately, Windows 7 allows users to scale text and other objects in order to make them easier to read while still staying sharp.
To do this, go to Start and type in DPIScaling then press Enter. You can choose a size increase of medium (125%) or larger (150%).
1) Enjoy the Retro Windows appearance
If you’re nostalgic for the old days of Windows, like Windows 98 and 95, then I don’t know what’s wrong with you. But instead of judging you, I’ll help you recapture some of that nostalgia by switching to the retro taskbar. If you don’t like the funky new Windows 7 taskbar, then right-click on it, choose Properties, then click Set Taskbar Buttons to Combine When Taskbar is Full. This will separate your programs into distinct buttons, which makes them easier to identify and makes Windows 7 (sorta) feel like an older version of Windows.