Theme Colours in Windows ‘Blue’

As I noted in my earlier post, the method for selecting theme (‘accent’) colours in Windows ‘Blue’ build 9364 has changed from Windows 8 RTM. I’m not going to bother looking too closely at the updates to the functions in UxTheme.dll this early in the development process, but I did notice two new registry values […]

Image Background Remover Tool

View source on GitHub. Inspired by Window Clippings, my preferred screenshot tool (which unfortunately crashes a lot under Windows 8 RTM), I wrote a small program for making image backgrounds transparent. It comes with a command-line interface and a basic GUI (pictured above). The GUI supports dragging-and-dropping images, and you can switch the black and […]

Retrieving Windows 8 Theme Colours

See also: Windows 8 Theme Colours Reference. Windows 8 doesn’t offer developers access to system theme colours, unlike its cousin, Windows Phone. Even for a version 1 product, this seems like a strange omission. Then again, we still don’t have a working public API for retrieving the Aero glass colour (or whatever we call it […]

WPF: Using System Colours in Animations

WPF provides access to the Windows system colours through the System.Windows.SystemColors class. As the MSDN documentation indicates, it’s possible to bind to these colours dynamically using the *Key resources, so when the system colours change, so will the appearance of your application. This code will set the colour of a TextBlock to the ‘GrayText’ system […]

WM_DWMCOLORIZATIONCOLORCHANGED doesn’t give the Aero Glass base colour

From MSDN: WM_DWMCOLORIZATIONCOLORCHANGED Message Sent to all top-level windows when the colorization color has changed. Parameters wParam: Specifies the new colorization color. The color format is 0xAARRGGBB. lParam: Specifies whether the new color is blended with opacity. We receive this message when the Aero Glass colour changes. Unfortunately, the value contained in wParam is not […]

Office 15: per application border colours?’s latest Office 15 screenshots reveal application-specific border colours and drop-shadows. Word gets a dark blue border and shadow, Excel gets a green border and shadow, etc.: Microsoft in fact applied for a patent for per-window glass colourisation in late 2005 (‘Glass appearance window frame colorization’; discovered by Long Zheng in 2007). While there isn’t […]