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[Bounty Claimed! ] Active Desktop in Vista

(45 posts)
  • Started 7 years ago by Scott
  • Latest reply from LH
  • Topic Viewed 54665 times

Scott
Scott
Posts: 5618

Sadly, MS has dropped the Active Desktop in Vista just when it was catching on. What I'd pay a bounty for would be a small app that replicates the ability to show 'active' content on my Vista desktop.

I've seen some free/shareware programs that aim to do the AD thing, among other features, but I've yet to be able to do it painlessly.

What I'm looking for in specific is the ability to view web pages on my desktop (for looping weather .gifs/.jpgs). This app should allow for the customization of the pages, i.e., resizing and moving to different locations on my desktop.

Feel free to ask any additional questions,

Scott

Here is a picture of AD in XP:

http://img451.imageshack.us/im.....topzl7.jpg

Posted 7 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

I've had at least 4 people write in and ask me for this as well.

Posted 7 years ago
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bcell
Posts: 2

This isn't perfect, but it is close to what you want. There's a Vista gadget called "Eye on the Web" that allows you to encapsulate any web page (or snippet of) on the sidebar or desktop. Here's the site:

http://tinyurl.com/2obd9b

Posted 6 years ago
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Scott
Scott
Posts: 5618

bcell,

Thank you for your post. This is an interesting app but falls far short of the Active Desktop I have in mind.

I'm thinking of Netvibes for the Desktop?

See pic:

http://img509.imageshack.us/my.....besql7.jpg

Scott

Posted 6 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

I've posted an official bounty for this.. $103.24 for completion of this item. You can read more of the details here:
http://www.howtogeek.com/howto.....for-vista/

I'm really hoping that some brilliant coder feels like working on this!

Posted 6 years ago
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MrLinux
MrLinux
Posts: 5

Just speaking from a technical standpoint, it may be possible to render the appropriate data (web-page, etc...) onto a PNG file, which is set as the desktop background. When the information changes, the PNG is re-encoded and then re-set as the desktop background. Obviously GIF, JPEG, or TIFF would work just as well, but the PNG encoding algorithms I've seen are more efficient than others.

Posted 6 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

The PNG idea is a truly great one, since you could do all rendering off-screen and then do nothing more than update the background image.

The only problem with it would be that the desktop wouldn't be live from a clickable standpoint, so if you wanted to render a news site, for instance, it wouldn't be linkable.

But the PNG idea would be useful from a separate standpoint, and would be a very cool utility that I'd like to see as well... I might even use it.

Posted 6 years ago
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Scott
Scott
Posts: 5618

Mr. Linux, Geek,

I'm not sure I'm reading this right. The AD on previous versions of Windows wasn't exactly clickable.

The webpages I had on my desktop updated when I hit the desktop refresh button. I don't mind having to do that.

Posted 6 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

What about resizing/moving them around? Would you care if that was done in the settings instead of "live" ?

Posted 6 years ago
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Scott
Scott
Posts: 5618

Hmmm, does that mean they all have the same or similar size?
On the XP desktop image I posted, I was able to resize them on the desktop. Is this what you mean 'live'?

It wouldn't matter to me if there was a template(?) setting.

Posted 6 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

Yeah, I guess what I was thinking is that you could resize / move / arrange them in the settings, but not actually click on them on the desktop and resize them.

And yeah, by "live" I mean that you can move/resize them right on the desktop itself.

It would definitely make things simpler if they weren't resizable directly on the desktop.

Posted 6 years ago
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Scott
Scott
Posts: 5618

It doesn't really matter to me. The pages weren't changed all that often or even resized, but I'd like the ability some way.

Hope that helps.

Posted 6 years ago
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supermansghost
supermansghost
Posts: 350

So all we need is an application that runs in the system tray, has a settings screen to configure all the items on the desktop, and then it renders it to a PNG file for the desktop every few minutes.

Actually sounds kinda simple... now we just need a coder!

Posted 6 years ago
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ansi92
Posts: 11

That doesn't sound all that difficult to create... if I had more time I'd take a crack at it.

Posted 6 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

This bounty has been claimed by Andreas:

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto.....for-vista/

Posted 6 years ago
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williej
Posts: 9

For some reason avedesktopsites does not work, it has an error when installing. Is there something I need to do prior to installing? Is there another program similar to Dreamscene for everyone.

Posted 6 years ago
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Ave
Posts: 6

AveDesktopSites does not have to get installed: unzipping it (all files!) should be good enough.

Posted 6 years ago
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williej
Posts: 9

It will not work on my vista machine, continuous errors.

Posted 6 years ago
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thegeek
The Geek
Posts: 2059

Are you using 64-bit vista? I wonder if that's the issue...

Posted 6 years ago
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williej
Posts: 9

No I am using 32-bit

Posted 6 years ago
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