Jan 11, 2010

How To Change The Wallpaper in Windows 7 Starter Edition

When I first decided to try out Windows 7 on my Dell Mini, I made the big mistake of putting Windows 7 ultimate on it. Boy did that run like molasses! It was so painful, I promptly went right back to running Bauer-Puntu (Which runs like a well oiled machine on netbooks by the way).

A little while later my friend asked me why I didn’t put Windows 7 Starter on my netbook, after all, that is the version that is designed for netbooks. If you haven’t heard of Windows 7 Starter Edition, here is the description from Wikipedia:

[Windows 7 Starter is] the least-featured edition of Windows 7; the Windows Aero theme is not included, and it isn't available in a 64-bit variant. The desktop wallpaper, and Visual Style (Windows 7 Basic) is also not user-changeable, although third party software such as Stardock MyColors can allow these changes to be made. This edition is available pre-installed on computers through system integrators or computer manufacturers.

Stardock MyColors? Yes, you can change your wallpaper with it, as well as the entire theme. What if you want to keep your netbook running light? Then you probably don’t want to change the theme, you just want to change the wallpaper. I found a free utility that does simply that! It is called Starter Wallpaper Changer. To use it, find a jpg wallpaper you like, then run Starter Wallpaper Changer as administrator. Select your jpg file, and change. Then log off, and log back in. Simple!


I first tried changing the registry, but it kept reverting back. I also tried replacing the wallpaper image Microsoft uses, but that just made my wallpaper black. That is what led me to Starter Wallpaper Changer.

Do you have Windows 7 Starter edition? Did you figure out a different way to change the wallpaper? Know of any other tricks on Windows 7? Let us know in the comments!

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