im sure the biggest skin edit is likely color, so why not add a section in the program for it, with 3 options(Hue,Saturation,Lightness) this would allow any skin to basically match any color... without the end user dealing with reg edit..
the user would have control over the basic skin changes (slightly less control than they have over taskbar color in win 7.., and it wouldnt put additional requirements on the skin..
(although you may want to save the edits into the skin file)
and if you wanted to go the extra mile, just have an option to pull these settings from the taskbar
also status update on my smoked glass skin? (do you like, are you going to link to, or add to the next version ect?)
For most skins the color comes from the bitmaps, not a RGB value. Also there are multiple colors in a skin that have to work in unison – the background, the text color, the selection, the selected text color, and many more. It is not possible to edit a single color and expect that the whole skin will magically work.
As for the skin itself - there are a few things that need to be improved:
1) the user image box is quite blurry. can you make it sharper to match the rest of the graphical elements?
2) when "no icons in second column" is selected, the items in the second column are way too close. You need to increase the text padding in the second column
3) the skin still says my name in the about box. You should replace it with your name
4) ideally you should host the skin somewhere and I can include a link to it. this way you can keep modifying it any time you want
@ color, it does come from the bitmap, and i was suggesting you include a super light bitmap editor with the program (that basically has those 3 options and save...)
@ fitting in, white text with a black border can be read on virtually any color..
@ multiple colors in a skin: yes there are several different colors in a lot of skins, but when adjusting this color globally the outcome still looks decent, (the below 'skins' were made by only adjusting the hue/saturation, and lightness, via gimp, and took about 15 seconds each (excluding opening, saving and importing)
those who want advanced control can still edit the resource manually, but i feel color is big enough/easy enough that it should be editable through classic shells options
and these attached skins look nice enough to me :P
@ the profile box: i agree with ya there, i noticed that shortly after upload and ill try to make a clearer version :P (do you happen to have a high res version, that i can scale down, rather than having to upscale the old image, if not ill search around)
@no icons making stuff close, didnt notice that :P ill fix it
@ skin says your name: ill update it to say, based off your skin, since all the images are based on yours, i dont even care for credit anyways.. (but i guess its wrong to attribute it to someone without there permission :P)
@ hosting somewhere, i probably dont plan on making to many changes, nor do i want to deal with hosting and the eventual deadlinks that occur, so you can just save it on the forum or something and link to it, or add it to the program next patch :P
Ill update those bugs mentioned, and anymore that come up in the next few days, then ill leave it for you to do as you wish
also some of the resources in the file dont need to be there anymore and are remnants, i tried to delete them, but that crashed the skin (im asuming maybe i have to change the numbers of all the resources and cant skip a number?)
If you need a bigger box, you can keep the corners and stretch the middle portion. Also don't use filtering when stretching. This will preserve the sharpness.
Skipping a number should work. If you have a skin that crashes, post it here and I can examine it.
As for the color - it is not that simple. Different skins have different needs and requirements. For example in the Aero skin you wouldn't want to change the white portion of the menu. Tinting the whole image will not work.
Also most of the skins already depend on the system color. Adding yet another color into the mix will just lead to confusion.
i agree with you that some skins would look a bit off, let me modify my suggestion then, to allow (if not already in) options where the user can input numbers (rather than just the current checkboxes) that way the skins that could support it can add it (also is there any way within a skin to dynamically change the color?, i kinda had what xpclient was saying in mind to :P
@ profile border; if the profile boarder wasnt round (which is what a good bit of the apeal is for it that would work fine, but you cant really stretch a spherical object without well.. stretching it :P
Ive added a new border for my next version, unless i can get my hands on a higher res version of the one i had :P (ill be searching a bit more later)
Blending in system colors is already supported. You can provide a mask bitmap that controls how to mix with the glass color and the system menu color.
Look at the "Color masks" section here: http://classicshell.sourceforge.net/skintutorial.html
ah thats prettymuch exactly what i wanted :P
heres my new border, although i still like the old one better, if not for the pixelation
Personally, I think the ability in 3.6.0 to finally follow closely (but not exact yet), the system glass color (on Windows 7) was a huge step forward. That the user only needs to modify the system glass color and the Aero and Smoked Glass skins follow that color is a huge improvement, enough to satisfy IMHO the average user who wants color-based personalization.
Unfortunately, at that time, MS suddenly crippled Glass from Windows 8 RTM. So now I think we just need a Metro skin that follows the system two-color Metro color scheme. Windows 8 users will love it. Users love anything that makes Classic Shell blend in more with the OS look. If the Metro skin is not popular, it will become popular if it changes from being bitmap based to a 2-color one Metro-style with RGB values following the ones set in PC Settings. White can be the fixed color for text and other elements like it's used in Windows 8's version of Metro design.
In reviews and everywhere, I have seen competing Start menu replacements like Start8 being applauded for how well they blend in with the system and Classic Shell despite shipping with awesome Glass skins, looks "tacked on" on Windows 8. A Metro skin that follows system colors will fill in that void. It will be worth making the menu elements like separators dynamically colored.
It will look something like this:
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