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windows 8 metroWindows 8 is going to be big news when it is launched in late 2012, with websites, magazines, newspapers and TV shows dedicating column inches and reports on the latest consumer operating system from Microsoft. As you’re probably already aware, Windows 8 will feature a version of the Metro UI, the tile-based user interface currently found on the Xbox 360 console and Windows Phones.

In the opinion of some Why Microsoft Should Not Be Pushing Their New Metro UI Onto Their Other Products [Opinion] Why Microsoft Should Not Be Pushing Their New Metro UI Onto Their Other Products [Opinion] With the introduction of the Windows Phone platform in 2010, Microsoft unveiled the Metro user interface, designed to make accessing information quick and easy. Rather than litter their new mobile platform with endless rows of... Read More , Microsoft is taking a gamble introducing Metro UI for computers. Users without a touch screen device, for instance, will only be able to interact with the tile-based interface via their mouse. This isn’t a major problem but defeats the object – Metro UI was built for fingers, after all. Could Metro UI take a bit of getting used to?

We’ve previously looked at apps that you can install on Windows 7 that will allow you to get as big a Windows 8 experience as possible. Forget about driverless Developer Previews; Omnimo UI is the best window into the future of Microsoft’s desktop, laptop and tablet OS.

Installing & Configuring Omnimo

To use the Omnimo overlay user interface for Windows 7, you will first need to install Rainmeter 2.1, available from this site. This is a desktop customization management utility, designed to allow the easy addition of skins for Windows.

windows 8 metro

After downloading the slim 1.3MB file, install Rainmeter and then turn your attention to the Omnimo website. Click the Download tab and find the link for the 22MB Zip file (which can be used with Windows XP and Vista).


windows metro

Once downloaded, extract the contents of the archive and double click the Setup.rmskin file and click Install. You will notice various Segoe fonts are listed as being part of the installation; these are key elements of successfully reproducing Metro. If you already have Rainmeter on your system you should upgrade this before running Omnimo.

windows metro

The first thing you will see post-install is the Omnimo setup screen. Choose the options you require, click the right arrow to proceed to your language choice and then decide between three variant Metro themes. The first is based on Windows Phone, the second on Metro; the third is a blank, configurable theme.

With your choice made, select the preferred resolution and a few moments later you will be enjoying Metro in Windows 7!

Metro UI for Windows 7

So with the Omnimo Metro theme installed, how do you continue using Windows?

Well, it’s pretty simple: you just point and click! While not a completely accurate representation of Metro (there is no left-right scrolling, for instance) it is a very usable theme, allowing the user to get to grips with the unusual new interface.

windows metro

Further customization is available via the right arrow in the centre-right of the screen, where you can add new tiles; existing tiles can be deleted by clicking the X in the top-right corner or adjusted using the small spanner icon (each visible when you mouse-over). Similarly, tiles can be dragged around.

There is a lot to play with in the Omnimo Metro theme for Rainmeter, from adding CPU monitors and adjusting your local weather to adding RSS feeds, altering tile backgrounds and much more.


There is a whole bunch of Metro and Metro-esque applications for Windows 7 available online but none of them offer the comprehensive experience offered by Omnimo.

windows 8 metro

If you’re unsure about Windows 8 and want to get to grips with the Metro UI and find out whether it is something you’re comfortable using long-term, or if you’re in love with the user interface and have been longing for Windows 8 to be released, this could be the answer to your prayers. Certainly you don’t need to worry about partitioning hard disk drives or creating virtual machines using this method, making Omnimo an easy choice.

Let us know in the comments what you think of it.

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  1. rocker
    June 20, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I've been using rainmeter for over year and the highest memory footprint I got was 40 MB

  2. ajaviator
    June 13, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    I just installed it and it's wonderful, given the look to my system i had been dreaming of...can't say anything about the memory usage issue....

  3. Shashank Johri
    June 8, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    I am using this from quite a long time now and it is awesome..Thanks for sharing the article.. Omnimo and rainmeter are awesome..:D

  4. Shehan Nirmal
    June 5, 2012 at 3:31 pm

    Windows 7 is the best...!!!

  5. Greg
    February 27, 2012 at 7:57 am

    its tight were can i get it?

  6. Will Radie
    February 15, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    I been using this for a few months now and I really love it. I use it a lot less then I thought I would, but there are times when it is HUGELY helpful and convenient.

  7. Mohamed Tair
    February 15, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    Yeah, Geat Post Mr Christian Cawley,Thanks For Sharing With Us :)

  8. Anonymous
    February 15, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    I'd be wary of installing Rainmeter - that program can really eat through resources if you don't keep it on a leash.

    • Will Radie
      February 15, 2012 at 11:27 pm

      Thanks for the tip.. but would you mind elaborating? What should I be looking for? When I check the Task Manager Processes list, it doesnt seem to be very high on the list of resource hogs... Is there any other way I can keep an eye on it? Thanks!

      • Anonymous
        February 15, 2012 at 11:43 pm

        I have noticed that after prolonged periods of usage, it will wreak havoc on the Desktop Window Manager and become laggy and unresponsive. The peak RAM usage I've seen for Rainmeter is around 300MB, though compared to some programs like Firefox, this is trivial. I have seen some strange memory leaks with rainmeter, but like with all software, your mileage may vary. It can also use up a lot of CPU time performing various functions.

    • Christian Cawley
      February 16, 2012 at 12:37 pm

      Interesting observation. Personally I've used this Rainmeter in both standard and VM environments and haven't seen any resource hit.

      More than likely something that changes from setup to setup.

  9. Abrar Ansari
    February 15, 2012 at 7:40 pm

    I have used this ... and it's awesome..

    Sadly , I had to uninstall it because my big bro didn't like it..