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Personalize Display Settings in Windows Vista

There are two ways to access and change display settings in Windows Vista. The quick way is to simply right click on a vacant area of the desktop. Up pops a menu that allows you to choose how your desktop icons (large, medium, classic) will be displayed and how they will be arranged (Auto Arrange or Align to Grid). On the other hand, if you prefer a clean desktop, you can also un-check the “Show Desk Top Items” in the View preferences.

Using the right-click pop-up menu, you can select the bottom option: Personalize. When you left click “Personalize,” you get the “Personalize appearance and sounds” menu, which allows you to:

. Select your window color and appearance. You can select from an array of active, inactive and message box window colors and background. Default is the the Windows Vista Basic. If you are lonely for the dark blue windows standard, you can select that option. To further tweak your colors and window appearance, click on the “Effects…” and “Advanced…” buttons.

. Select your desktop background. If you’d like to adorn your desk top with an interesting landscape or snazzy color design, choose from a group of Vista photos and wallpapers. On the other hand, you can also upload a photo of your own by clicking the “Browse…” button and navigating to your favorite photo.

. Select from a variety of screen savers that will take over your display after a set amount of time that your computer is inactive. Modern display technology has rendered the the need for a screen “saver” redundant, but you can select a handy security option that requires a security log on to get back to your display. This is a handy tool for professionals who have to leave their computer and prefer to keep their business private.

. Change the shape and color of your mouse pointer. Though this menu you can also access mouse settings (speed, etc.).

. Combine your variations of settings into a theme, or revert back to the Vista basic colors and mouse settings.

. Access and change your basic display settings. Resolve screen flicker and change your monitor resolution to display more or fewer desktop items.

The second way to access and change your display settings in Windows Vista is through the Start menu. Click on “Control Panel” in the right column of the start menu and select “Appearance and Personalization. The Personalization option at the top of the big dialog box allows access to everything discussed previously. Additionally, through this menu, you can access settings that, among other things, accommodate visually impaired users or make the menus and keyboard more friendly for those who have difficulty using the mouse.

So Windows Vista has incorporated a number of user-friendly options that accommodate a variety of user preferences and allow you to personalize your computer. Don’t worry if you mess up and end up with a look you cannot stand. You can undo everything with a click of the mouse by reverting back to the Vista default.

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