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					                                                     Windows Vista – Personalisation of the
                                                     Display Properties


This skillsheet has been designed to give you a tour of the Windows
Vista “Personalization” options for changing your display properties.
If you have been using a PC for some time but are new to Windows
Vista you may be familiar with the “Display Options” tool in the old
control panel. The settings that were previously available are now
grouped with additional tools within the “Personalization” tool. To
start we need to access the Control Panel and switch it into Classic
View.

Select: Start – Control Panel

Note: These instructions are the same for all versions of Vista
providing you are running the Aero or Basic interface themes.




                                                      Note: Select Classic
                                                      View from the menu at
                                                      the top left corner of the
                                                      window.



                                                        When you have opened the control panel in
                                                        classic view double click/run the
                                                        “Personalization” icon.




                                                                                 Once you have opened the Personalize
                                                                                 appearance and sound option menu you will
                                                                                 find that the main controls are split into 7
                                                                                 areas.

                                                                                 We will focus on the “Window Colour and
                                                                                 Appearance” option during this skillsheet,
                                                                                 so select that option now.




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                                                     Windows Vista – Personalisation of the
                                                     Display Properties



                                                                                           Within the Window Colour and
                                                                                           Appearance options you may be a little
                                                                                           confused if you are a long time Windows
                                                                                           user.
                                                                                           In Vista there is tendency to have
                                                                                           multiple levels of changes, starting from
                                                                                           small tweaks. At this stage you have the
                                                                                           option to change the general tone of the
                                                                                           theme and enable/disable the glass
                                                                                           effect for the Aero interface.
                                                                                           If you want to make more personal
                                                                                           changes, such as changing the default
                                                                                           background colour or the size of menu
                                                                                           fonts you will need to select “Open
                                                                                           classic appearance properties for
                                                                                           more colour options”.




Appearance:
The default options again only offer you only basic
customisation. The ‘Colour scheme’ drop down menu
contains the default schemes which you can use as a
base for your changes. These include a Windows
Classic scheme which will enable you to make Vista look
like the original versions of Windows.
Windows Aero is the default scheme for Vista and is the
only one which will enable transparency on the desktop.
Note: Not all systems can run the transparency effects
of Aero as a 3D graphics accelerator is required. When
a suitable card is not available, Vista runs in ‘Windows
Vista Basic’ mode.
To make further changes you will need to select the
‘Effects’ or ‘Advanced’ buttons on the right hand side of
the window.




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                                                    Windows Vista – Personalisation of the
                                                    Display Properties


Effects:
The effects window contains options for the text effects that
you can use in Windows Vista. One of the more important
features here is the ability to change the method Windows
uses to smooth the edges of screen fonts. By changing this
option to ‘Clear Type’, text on screen can often be clearer
and bolder. The intention of this feature is to make text on
screen look as close to printed text as possible. This is in
recognition of the fact that most people prefer reading printed
text to reading from the screen.
Other features within this panel are the ability to activate
shadows under menus to give them a little more depth and to
show contents of a window while it is being dragged. Both of
these options are on as default if you are running Windows
Vista in Aero mode.


                                                                        Advanced Options:
                                                                        From this window you can select each screen element
                                                                        and tune it to your exact requirement. You can either
                                                                        select the element you want from the interactive
                                                                        preview area at the top, or select it from the drop down
                                                                        ‘Item’ menu.
                                                                        When you select an element, the editable options
                                                                        become highlighted to the right and the options
                                                                        which are unavailable are greyed out. For most options
                                                                        you can change the font type, size, style, foreground
                                                                        and background colours.
                                                                        Once you are happy with your design, click ‘Ok’ and
                                                                        then ‘Apply’.

                                                                        Example: If you wanted to change the default
                                                                        background colour from white to pale yellow (a
                                                                        common change for people with reading and writing
                                                                        difficulties as it reduces the contrast and makes things
                                                                        easier to read), you would either click where it says
                                                                        ‘Window Text’ in the interactive area, or select
                                                                        ‘Window’ from the Item drop down list.
                                                                        You should now have the properties displayed for that
                                                                        setting, namely colour 1 (background) white and colour
                                                                        2 (foreground) black.
                                                                        Select the colour 1 drop down and go to ‘other’. Once
                                                                        in the colour selection window find a suitable base
                                                                        colour and use the colour slider to the right to find the
                                                                        level of tint you require. When completed select ‘ok’.
                                                                        Select ‘ok’ in the Advanced Appearance window and
                                                                        then ‘apply’ the changes in the main Appearance
                                                                        Settings window.



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      This skillsheet is part of a series created for Windows Vista. For more information please visit our
      website www.abilitynet.org.uk or call 0800 269 545.

      Skillsheets in this series include:

          •    Windows Vista – Ease of Use Centre
          •    Windows Vista – Tuning the Keyboard
          •    Windows Vista – Text or Visual Alternatives for Sounds
          •    Windows Vista – Mouse Properties
          •    Windows Vista – Personalise the Display Options


      AbilityNet is a charity and as such we are reliant on your donations in order to keep these
      documents up to date. If you find them useful please donate £3 by texting “ability” to 84858.




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AbilityNet is a registered charity, No. 1067673. Telephone 0800 269545 – Email: enquiries@abilitynet.org.uk – Web: www.AbilityNet.org.uk

				
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