You have seen pipes, the Windows logo and even slideshows of photos as computer screensavers. How about the prospect of using your family videos (or anything else for that matter) as a screensaver on your Windows desktop?
Well there is a tool from Microsoft that allows you to use videos as a screensaver. Its called Microsoft Video Screensaver.
The download requires you to verify the genuineness of your copy of Windows. Once that is done, the installation is simple and a breeze. You can then access “Video Screensaver” from the “Display Properties” box and then hopping over to the “Screen Saver” tab.
Select “Video Screensaver” from the drop down list and click on “Settings” to choose the video you would like to play. You can choose to play the included default video giving you a view of countries all over the world (kind of lame to be frank) or you can choose your own videos.
Just put all the videos you would like to play in a separate folder if you don’t already have one and point the settings dialog to it. That’s it. You now have a video screensaver waiting for your computer to get idle! I tried the tool with wmv and avi files and it seemed to work flawlessly with both of them.
With that out of the way, now what if you want to get Windows Vista Dreamscene functionality (animated or video wallpapers) ? For similar functionality you can try DreamsceneXP. Dreamscene XP gives you 7 dreamscenes in a variety of resolutions. Follow the following steps to get it running :
- Download the dreamscene of your choice.
- Extract to any location, Open up display properties and browse to the extracted location and click on index.htm.
- Click “apply” and presto you have an animated background!
While Dreamscene limits you to 7 choices, you can use another option (actually more of a hack) to play any of your videos as the desktop background. You can use [NO LONGER WORKS] VLC media player to play a video file in the background as wallpaper.
- Choose the video you want to play as background, or optionally create a playlist if you want to play more than one.
- Once up and running, right click within the player and check wallpaper.
- If you don’t get the wallpaper option go to Settings > Preferences > Video > Output Modules > Direct X and check “Enable Wallpaper Mode”
- Also you might want to enable repeating playlist by default so that the background doesn’t turn black after the video finishes running. For this go to Settings > Preferences > Playlist and check “Repeat All”.
There you have it – a video as your desktop background. If the taskbar button bothers you and you want to get rid of it, try something like Trayconizer. Since VLC supports a multitude of formats you can use virtually any file as the background.
Whn it comes to using videos as wallpapers, you may try the previously mentioned methods of using any of your screensavers as the desktop background.
Do you know of any other application that offers a similar functionality? Or have you used the desktop background or screensavers creatively in other ways? Let us know in comments