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Windows 7 - How to Change a Folder Background

Did you know that it is possible to add a background image to any folder on your computer? Unfortunately, there is no obvious way to do this and, while you can change folder icons and other settings by going to the properties page for that folder, there is no option for adding a background or changing the colour of the text for files and sub-folders. There are two ways of customizing a folder in this way. More advanced users may prefer the manual method, while less experienced users may want to skip ahead to the second method and use a third-party utility.

1 - Manually Changing the Folder Background
Open up Notepad and copy and paste the following lines:

You can customize the folder background and file name text by adding values to these options. To add a background image for a folder, enter the full address of the image you want to use to "IconArea_Image=." For example - "IconArea_Image=C:\My picture.jpg." The file must be in the JPG format.

To add shadows to the text in the file and folder names, enter "1" after "ShadowedText=."

The remaining settings allow you to customize the colour of the text by entering the red, green and blue values respectively. Each value entered must be between 0 and 255. Entering 0 for each value will make the text black while entering 255 for each value will make it white. If you want the text to be full red, enter 255 for "TextR=" and 0 for the others and so forth.

When you've entered your desired settings, open the "File" menu and choose "Save as." In the dropdown box beside "Save as type," ensure that you choose "All Files." Enter "desktop.ini" as the file name and save the file in the folder you want to modify. If you want the customizations to apply to all of the sub-folders in that folder you will need to copy desktop.ini into each folder.

2 - Using Windows 7 Folder Background Changer
Windows 7 Folder Background Changer is a free, portable application which enables anyone to change the folder background and text colour easily. Download the program and run it as an administrator. Browse to the location of the folder you want to modify and choose the background image that you want by clicking "Change Background Image." When you've chosen the image, Windows 7 Folder Background Changer will automatically open the modified folder to show you the results.
To change the text colour, click on the colour box beside "Text Color" and choose any colour you want. You can also check the box "Show Shadow Under Text" if you want. Checking the box "Apply To Sub Folders" will automatically apply the settings to every folder contained within the main one.
If you find that your customizations aren't taking effect, simply log out of Windows and log back in again. You can remove the changes and revert to default settings by deleting desktop.ini in the modified folder at any time.


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