7 Windows Wallpaper Tricks That Don’t Disappoint

It’s probably the most important image on your computer, so do it justice… Here are 7 useful ways to take your simple desktop wallpaper to the next level!

1. Use Google Calendar as Your Desktop Wallpaper

google

Want something more useful that just a static image?  Why not use Google Calendar as your backdrop so you can plan the day better?  Here is a set of instructions you can use if you want to try it out.

Go to your Google Calendar  settings.  In the calendar address section.  Choose the HTML option and copy the URL.

In Windows, go to Control panel–> display–> desktop and pick ‘customize desktop’. Choose the ‘web’ tab and click ‘new’ then add the URL for your Google Calendar.

You can also add other URLs to integrate just about any website into your wallpaper!

2. Wallpapr – Search Engine Just For Wallpapers

wallpapr

Using conventional image search engines rarely return results which are good enough for a wallpaper.  WallPapr is a search engine which retrieves wallpaper sized images from Flickr (which contains some of the best images you could ever consider using as a wallpaper).

Every photo it draws from has at least 1024×768 resolution, and clicking on a thumbnail will bring you straight to the photo download page!  Alternatively, you can try searching within this Flickr group specifically setup for Wallpapers

3. Rotate Your Favourite Wallpapers with ‘PowerToys Wallpaper Changer’

PowerToys are additional programs that Windows developers work on after product release.  This one helps to juggle your wallpaper with images on your hard drive so you’ll never get bored with your background!

“Make your computer desktop more dynamic, interactive, useful, and fun. The Wallpaper Changer PowerToy allows your desktop wallpaper to change automatically. It also lets you choose which images to display. Select the folder of images to display as a slide show and set the display interval to change wallpaper every few minutes, hours, or days. “

4. Change up Your Desktop with Flickr Wallpaper Rotator

According to Hitwise, Photo sharing site Flickr is now the 2nd largest photo site behind Photobucket.  No surprise then that it’s an excellent resource for beautiful wallpapers.

Rather than rotate within your own images on the hard drive like the PowerToy mentioned above, ‘Flickr Wallpaper Rotator’ is a piece of freeware that will help your automatically download images from Flickr before rotating your wallpaper.  Just specify tags or a Flickr username, and you’re good to go!

If you’re more of a Google Images fan, a similar application exists for it.

5. Get a Video Wallpaper Using VLC Media Player

One of the key features on Windows Vista Ultimate is Dreamscene.  This utility gives you the ability to have a video as a background.  Slow swimming fishes, what blowing in the wind – whatever your fancy.  If you’re NOT a Windows Vista Ultimate user, the Vista Rewired blog has come up with an excellent tutorial to implement this using our favourite cross-platform player – VLC media player.

6. Implement a Multi Monitor Wallpaper

multi monitor

Windows won’t display your beautiful wallpaper across multiple monitors?  I don’t have a multi-monitor setup at this point, but apparently it’s not very straightforward.

“Not only can you not display separate backgrounds on different displays, but if your displays are different resolution, one of them is going to look either stretched and fugly, or cropped and weird.” – Will from Maximum PC

Fortunately, if you do want to implement a multi-monitor wallpaper, help is at hand in the form of a useful Photoshop template that will fix this.

7. Join a Social Network for Wallpapers with ‘Desktop Nexus’

desktop

Take a wallpaper site, add tags, comments, search information, RSS feeds, and a vibrant community – and you’ve changed a 90’s website into a Web 2.0 hub.  Community managed (members have the choice to vote for wallpapers being added), Desktop Nexus is where you want to be if you’re into sharing and obtaining high quality wallpapers.

8. Improve your Productivity with GTD Wallpapers

layered

Let your background give you an incredible productivity boost by defining different sections on your desktop.
Use this excellent layered GTD wallpaper to organize your icons in groups, like the:

  • paper area for work stuff
  • aluminum plate for personal projects
  • wooden desk for yet to be categorized elements, like finished or in-progress downloads.
  • post-it for urgent elements

Bonus links: Spice up your desktop the old fashioned way – using nothing but pretty images!

What good wallpaper sites do you know of?  Let us know in the comments!

[tags]wallpaper, desktop, images, photos [/tags] 

15 Responses to “7 Windows Wallpaper Tricks That Don’t Disappoint”

  1. […] 7 Windows Wallpaper Tricks That Don?t Disappoint – Friedbeef?s Tech […]

  2. Syahid Ali says:

    a gtd wallpaper! nice. i should try that.

  3. iCalvyn says:

    i like number 7, Desktop Nexus, it is useful

  4. Marco Gomes says:

    Thank you for the link for Wallpapr

    What can I do to make Wallpapr better?

    Check http://gotstress.marcogomes.com too =)

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  6. Arman says:

    I was really interested in the gmail calendar as a background, but the instructions given were for XP, and I have Vista. Does anyone know how to set it up using Vista?

  7. Casey says:

    I’m running XP on several computers, but my new laptop is Vista. I’m with Arman, how do you get Vista to run a URL as a background?
    Thanks!

  8. James Yeang says:

    Arman & Casey: I think Microsoft wants users to go with Sidebar gadgets which is a much more elegant solution rather than using Active Desktop backgrounds. That would be a good option if you want similar functionality

  9. solodrummer says:

    i ‘d like ur collection! but there is highly recommended wibsite http://www.vistafeel.com

  10. comp@ddict says:

    Thanks for the wallpaper search engine.

    I stumbled accross this site named:-
    http://www.extremeinstability.com

    It’s got tons of pics of natural wonders, like tornados, auroras. Check them out.

  11. walid says:

    so nice

    yhank’s man

  12. […] 7 Windows Wallpaper Tricks That Don’t Disappoint […]

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