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Introduction

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Theme Manager is an application that works with other Stardock Object Desktop products, that are installed on your computer as well as Windows graphic elements (i.e. wallpaper, cursors, screen savers, media player). You do not need to own all of the Stardock applications, however it will only work with those installed. The following Stardock products are supported through Theme Manager: BootSkin Pro, CursorFX, DeskScapes, DesktopX, IconPackager, LogonStudio Vista, MyColors, ObjectDock, SoundPackager, and WindowBlinds. Also, additional graphic elements can de downloaded from Wincustomize.com where thousands are free, though Master Skins have a small fee.

The purpose of Theme Manager is to make it easier to quickly access the different Stardock programs & other Windows graphic elements in one place. This allows you to change the icons for instance, without having to run IconPackager. You could change the wallpaper, skin, cursors, sounds and more all though Theme Manager! However, if you want to run one of these applications, Theme Manager gives you quick access to most of them by simply clicking the Settings icon on the respective Theme Manager tab. Plus, you can still change the Dream (animated wallpaper) for instance, through DreamScape directly as opposed to running Theme Manager. Then when you run Theme Manager, it will reflect the changes you made in DreamScape or visa versa.

Getting Started

To run Theme Manager, from the Start Menu, click on All Programs, then the Stardock folder, Object Desktop, and finally Theme Manager.

Location of Theme Manager icon on Start Menu
When you first start Theme Manager, you may see the flashlight icon as it searches for themes.  This is normal.

Searching for themes on your computer.
The Theme Manager window consists of: a menu along the top (beginning with Themes), a sub-menu underneath with the MyColors & Suites sub-tabs, a sidebar menu down the left side, a preview area to the right of that and a selection of themes along the bottom. The preview area displays what theme your desktop has applied (installed), currently it is set to Windows Vista Aero on Windows Vista).

Themes - MyColors sub-tab - showing features of Theme Manager.
Initially, Theme Manager only has the Windows default theme listed, which comes with Windows. However, if you have MyColors installed with one or more themes, they will be displayed along the bottom as thumbnails. Each one representing a different MyColors theme. The MyColors program is free to download from Stardock, but most themes have a fee.  The rest of this manual will explain in detail what everything does on each tab, but for this introduction you will be given an overview of Theme Manager.

Menu Bar

The menu bar along the top of the Theme Manager window acts as a way to navigate between the different areas you can customize.  The top row categorizes each area (i.e. Themes, Applications, My Desktop, Settings, About) with related sub-tabs under each.

Themes menu.


Applications menu.


The first three menu options (i.e. Themes, Applications, My Desktop) are related to applying graphic & sound elements.  Here is a list of Stardock applications and Windows graphic elements supported in Theme Manager and where they are accessed.

Element Quick Reference

 Element

 Type

 Menu

 Sub-tab

 File Extension**

CursorFX * Stardock Applications Cursors .cursorfx, .zip
DeskScapes * Stardock Applications DeskScapes .dream
IconPackager * Stardock Applications Icons .iconpackager, .iptheme, .ip
LogonStudio Vista * Stardock Applications Logons .logonvista
MyColors *** Stardock Themes MyColors .mycolors
Screen Savers * Windows Applications Screen Savers .scr
SoundPackager * Stardock Applications Sounds .soundpack
Suites * WC Themes Suites .suite
Wallpaper * Windows Applications Wallpaper .bmp, .jpg, .jpeg, .dream
WindowBlinds * Stardock Applications Skins .uls, .wba

Notes:

* = You can download additional themes from WinCustomize.com (WC) with many being free.

** = File Extensions are related to File Types, which are the characters at the end of a filename (right side), such as: Aquarium.soundpack.  With the ".soundpack" being the file extension.  File Types are listed in Windows Explorer in their own column something like "SOUNDPACK file" (for our "Aquarium.soundpack" example). By default, Windows does not display file extensions (example: Aquarium).  However, if you turned this option on, each file will display the extension as well (Aquarium.soundpack). Regardless if this is on of off, when you navigate to a folder, if there are any files matching the file type(s) it is looking for, they will be displayed in the window. The information in this column is provided for as a convenience.

*** = Additional MyColors themes can be purchased through the MyColors program or Impulse. Additional elements (i.e. ObjectDock, MP3 players, BootSkin Vista, DesktopX, ...) are supported by Theme Manager and may be included in suites, etc..


If you click on a tab, such as Applications, then Sounds, but do not have SoundPackager, you will see the SoundPackager logo.  If you click either the logo or the web site address below it, your web browser will display the product page for that application. You can get information on purchasing the product.

Missing application.

My Desktop

The My Desktop menu option allows you to save My Current Desktop settings. For instance, you could apply a new skin, icons, sounds, cursors, wallpaper, etc., then save all of those choices or just save select elements.

My Desktop menu

Settings

The Settings menu option is divided between General Settings & Advanced Settings.   General Settings on Windows Vista include: seeing advanced options when applying suites, and using the Vista Aero window frames instead of the skin.  This is where the only real difference between Windows Vista & XP occurs.  Windows XP does not include the second option (i.e. Aero window frames).

Settngs menu

About

The About screen display the title/logo of the program (i.e. Theme Manager), version (i.e. 3.00.057 (x86)) and web address for Stardock (i.e. http://www.stardock.com).  Clicking either the logo or web address will load your web browser and display the Stardock web site.

About menu

Help

To view the most current version of this instruction guide, click the Help ? icon in the upper right corner of Theme Manager.  This will display the Theme Manager Guide on the Stardock web site.  You need to be connected to the Internet to view this site.

Location of Help icon and Close button.

Closing Theme Manager

To Close Theme Manager, simply click the close X button in the upper right corner of the window.
Or press <ALT> + <F4>. Or left of right click on Theme Manager title bar (top of window) and select Close.