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Welcome to DeskScapes

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DeskScapes - with new Vintage Dream (hybrid) selected.

DeskScapes allows you to apply static and animated wallpaper (called "Dreams") to your Windows 7, Vista or XP desktop. Dreams use your computers video card to display the animated wallpaper, greatly reducing the CPU usage of your computer. When you run an application full screen (maximized), DeskScapes stops the Dream to save on system resources (since you cannot see the Dream). When you minimize or downsize the application window, DeskScapes resumes playing the Dream. Like static wallpaper, animated wallpaper is behind any desktop icons you may have.

When running on laptop battery power, DeskScapes will pause the Dream and notify you to help conserve energy.
DeskScapes includes seven Dreams, which consist of three dynamic (i.e. Desktop Earth, Desktop Slideshow, Expanding Shapes, Water Dream. Winter Snow), one video based (i.e. Planktonic), and one hybrid (i.e. Vintage Dream). Desktop Slideshow cycles through selected static (non-animated) wallpaper. Apply any one of numerous effects to alter a Dream. Then use DeskScapes to head over to the WinCustomize web site where you can download over 1,800 additional Dreams.

Features of DeskScapes (Paid Version)

All of the features of the 30 Day Free Trial, without expiring.

Features of DeskScapes (30 Day Free Trial)

  • New! Colouring tab - change the colour of static wallpaper.
  • New! Added support for Triggered Dreams in DreamMaker.
  • New! Added the ability to combine Effects.
  • New! Added Expanding Shapes dynamic Dream.
  • New! Added Existing Wallpaper option - change colour of existing wallpaper.
  • New! Option to disable pausing of Dreams when application window is maximized.
  • New! Software Development Kits (SDK) included to create your own effects. Free SDK available for download from Stardock to create dynamic Dreams.
  • New! Includes Hybrid Dream!
  • New! Apply one of numerous Effects, including new canvas and paper textures.
  • New! Randomly change selected Dreams & how often they change.
  • New! Control desktop icon transparency.
  • New! Desktop Slideshow - a dynamic Dream that displays static wallpaper with optional effects.
  • New! Multiple monitor support, different background on each monitor. (Windows 7/Vista only.)
  • New! Support for Microsoft .THEMEPACK. (Windows 7 only.)
  • Change your desktop with one of the several Dreams included with DeskScapes.
  • Adjust quality vs. performance setting for dynamic Dreams. (Windows 7/Vista only.)
  • Choose if you want Dreams to run while on laptop battery power.
  • Download & apply over 1,800 Dreams, and 13,500+ wallpapers from WinCustomize.com.
  • Purchase and display Master Skin Dreams from WinCustomize.com.
  • Create your own Dreams with the included DreamMaker & NWABuild utilities.

System Requirements

  • Windows 7 (32-bit or 64-bit), Windows Vista (32-bit or 64-bit) in versions (Home, Basic, Premium, Ultimate, Business, Enterprise) and Windows XP (32-bit) with Service Pack 3.
    Note: Windows Vista Ultimate users do not need to purchase DeskScapes to run Dream files. Just download the free 30 day Trial Version from here.
  • Minimum Requirements: Windows 7/Vista users must have support for DirectX 9 graphics with a WDDM driver, 128 MB of graphics memory, Pixel Shader 2.0 and 32-bit color. The video card must have a Windows Experience Index Graphics score of 2.0 or better.
  • Minimum Requirements: Windows XP users must have a card supporting DirectX 9, 128 MB of graphics memory, Pixel Shader 2.0 and 32-bit color. In addition only machines running a PCIe (PCI Express) or AGP 8x video card are recommended. AGP 4x/2x will not be supported.
  • Attention XP Users!
    Do not apply a Dream on Windows XP if your machine has an ATI AGP graphics card until you have updated your Catalyst drivers to at least version 8.12. The drivers available at the time of Deskscapes release were not specifically tuned for optimal results. ATI tested and updated their driver to address this issue. You can find the latest catalyst driver here: http://game.amd.com/us-en/drivers_catalyst.aspx
  • Please refer to the FAQ for more information on video codecs, etc. at: http://www.stardock.com/products/deskscapes/faq.asp
  • Minimum screen resolution: 768 (width) by 350 (height).
  • Impulse & Internet connection required to download and update software.

Impulse Requirements

Upgrading from Previous Versions

Impulse will handle the upgrade from previous versions.

Updates

Check Impulse for updates to DeskScapes and other installed Stardock software.

Additional Dreams

Check WinCustomize.com for a large selection of Master Skins (for purchase) and hundreds of free Dreams.

Default File Paths

Dreams are stored (by default) on your computer with a ".dream" (without quotes) file extension/type and in the folders:

Windows 7:
Dreams: C:\Users\<user login>\My Documents\Stardock\Dreams
Extracted files folder: C:\Users\All Users\Stardock\DeskScapes\ExtractedData

Hybrid Dream NWA Encoder (32 bit):
C:\Program Files\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes3\NWABuild.exe

Hybrid Dream NWA Encoder (64 bit):
C:\Program Files (x86)\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes3\NWABuild.exe

Windows Vista:
Dreams: C:\user-data\<user login>\Dreams
Extracted files folder: C:\Users\All Users\Stardock\DeskScapes\ExtractedData

Hybrid Dream NWA Encoder (32 bit):
C:\Program Files\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes\NWABuild.exe

Hybrid Dream NWA Encoder (64 bit):
C:\Program Files (x86)\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes\NWABuild.exe

Windows XP: (32 bit only)
Dreams: C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>\My Documents\Stardock\Dreams
Extracted files folder: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Stardock\DeskScapes

DeskScapes Hybrid Dream NWA Encoder:
C:\Program Files\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes3\NWABuild.exe

Note: C: is the default drive, and <user name> is the name you logged on as and the name of the folder where your documents are stored under.

File Extensions / Types

DeskScapes:
  • .DREAM - are animated wallpapers (i.e. video-based, dynamic, hybrid).
  • .JPG, .BMP - static wallpaper.
  • .MPG, .WMV - video files.
DreamMaker:

  • Dynamic Dreams - consist of Dynamic Link Libraries (.DLL), requiring C++ programming.
  • Hybrid Dreams - consists of a .HYBRID, .PNG, .JPG or .NWA files. NWA files can be created with the included NWABuild.exe utility (located in the DeskScapes folder) or Stardock's SkinStudio 6 (or higher).
  • Video Dreams - consist of a .MPEG, .MPG, .WMV or .AVI video file.

Support

Please contact Stardock Support at: www.stardock.com/support.  On that web page you will find helpful FAQ's and other troubleshooting information.  If you are unable to resolve your issue, please use the “Technical Support” link to "Submit a Ticket" to Support.  Please include as much information about your computer as possible; version of Windows (i.e. XP 32-bit, Vista 64-bit Business, Windows 7 32-bit Home Premium), type of computer (i.e. brand, model, speed, RAM, video card), version of DeskScapes, etc. On the "About DeskScapes" tab, please click "Copy to clipboard" and paste into the ticket.  This information will allow Support to diagnose your issue much quicker and allow for a faster response.

Resources

You can download the free SDK (Software Development Kit) for creating dynamic Dreams from the Stardock DeskScapes download page. The SDK includes C++ programming that will aid in the development of dynamic Dreams. 

An SDK for creating effects is included in the DeskScapes\Effects folder on your hard-drive:

Windows 7/Vista (32 bit): C:\Program Files\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes3\Effects
Windows 7/Vista (64 bit): C:\Program Files (x86)\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes3\Effects
Windows XP (32 bit only): C:\Program Files\Stardock\Object Desktop\DeskScapes3\Effects

Look for these files: “Building new effects.txt “, and “Dll based effect sample code.zip”.

For additional information on DeskScapes, please refer to these articles on WinCustomize:

Object Desktop: The road to DeskScapes 3 by Frogboy (October 7, 2009) - Brad (CEO/Founder of Stardock) explains what he wanted to see in this major upgrade.

DeskScapes 3 Effects Feature by Island Dog (September 30, 2009) - includes a video of the new effects feature.

DeskScapes 3 New User Interface by Island Dog (September 1, 2009) - an introduction to DeskScapes 3.

Tools of the Dream Trade by Master Baron, (February 6, 2008) - an excellent article describing common tools he uses to create Dreams. Master Baron is widely known for creating Dreams, including highly rated "Master Skins" on WinCustomize and elsewhere.

How to Create Dreams (Links) by CarGuy1, (March 27, 2008) - includes over a dozen links to articles and resources related to DeskScapes Dreams.

Quick Lesson in Dreams - (November 30, 2007) introduced by Zoomba, article written by Seabass. Includes a tutorial with plenty of screenshots using Skin Studio 6.

WinCustomize.com is a great resource for not only getting a lot of great Dreams, but also provides articles, forums, gallery, store and more.  This is a great site run by Stardock with community involvement to bring together the best in skinning (graphics) for Windows.  The site is free to use.

You can upload a Dream file you created to share on WinCustomize.  This may include original material you created.

Direct link to WinCustomize message Forums (http://forums.wincustomize.com/)

Documentation

The version of this manual is 2.1 (6-22-10) and is based on DeskScapes (version 3.2).  This manual was written and is maintained by Jim Kennedy (TheProf).  Please email comments or corrections regarding this documentation to: documentation@stardock.com.



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