Despite we post many third party themes or Visual Styles for Windows 7, we have the responsibility to make Windows 7 users aware of the potential risks associated with their use.
These third party themes or Visual Styles completely changes the appearance of Windows 7 operating systems.
There may be many that works without any problems, especially those who make less profound changes, merely the appearance of the screens, cursors, sounds, odd little menu, but believe that there are third party themes or Visual Styles can cause problems and of various kinds, from the installation of viruses, spyware and Trojans to unconfigure all of our system, even to completely disable the system.
These problems can occur and at the same installation process or later during the routine use of our computer, and may range from failure to access drives to loss of documents and files, slowing down the system, program malfunctions, problems in network connections or loss of function of Windows itself and errors in the updates or installing software.
This is because in many cases that these third party themes or Visual Styles play with vital parts of the system and even the Windows registry,dll files to install and completely change the look of Windows, without providing any other advantages besides that is not purely aesthetic, since by changing four screens and ten icons are not going to make our Windows 7 to a Mac OS or Linux, or will have any advantages that these third party themes or Visual Styles provide, but there are many drawbacks, especially in low-end machines.
But the thing does not stop here, but it does nothing to start. When we try to remove these third party themes or Visual Styles to try to solve all or at least some of these problems we are usually (if we can remove them, that’s another subject) with a significant number of problems, among which we find the following:
– Problems of viruses and malware.
– Problems at Windows startup.
– Failure to recover the items and original appearance, since in many cases only gives the option to use the Windows Classic View.
– Disappearance of the Taskbar and Start Windows.
– Incompatibility with subsequent updates to Windows.
– Unable to install updates.
– Problems with installing software (including malware or antivirus programs.)
– Problems with the operation of programs from Windows itself.
– Problems with the operation of third-party programs.
– Problems with the operation of Directx.
– Audio malfunction.
– Malfunction of the video.
– Inability to access certain hardware, particularly USB and optical drives (CD and DVD).
– Connectivity issues, both Internet and internal networks.
– Failure of peripherals such as printers or scanners.
– Problems accessing the hard disk.
– Let our system extremely vulnerable to any attack.
– Generally the system is very slow.
The list is rather long, but I think as it shows enough.
In most cases the only solution to this happens to format your disk and do a clean install of Windows, with all that this implies even data loss.
And all this only to have the aesthetic of another system, which tell you is not got no other benefit, so at least we have to consider whether it is worth taking these risks.
In short, we are playing an important part of the system (remember, among other things, one of the factors that influence the speed of the equipment and the use of system resources), in which the tools that Windows itself offers are calculated for the system is not affected in any of these issues and ultimately adds nothing to the performance of your computer.
We must be very scrupulous in the use of such third party themes or Visual Styles, especially when they are not that Microsoft itself providing us, and be very sure what we are doing … and especially the origin and cleaning of the elements that in spite of this we decide to install.
Steps should be done before and after installation of third party themes or Visual Styles:
- Always download from reputed websites/blogs. Try to avoid files those are shared through Peer to peer or file uploading and sharing services. These services notoriously harbor different kinds of Viruses, Malwares, Trojan horses.
- Check the reputation of the original creator; it is better if you can directly contact with him in any problem.
- Avoid replacing the dll files.
- Scan the downloaded file with up to date Antivirus and Antimalware software.
- After installing the third party theme or Visual Style run a thorough Antivirus and Antimalware scan.
- Check whether you can install Microsoft Windows Updates without any problem. Turn on Windows Automatic updates if it is not enabled.
Thanks for writing this! My Windows 7 home premium has totally messed up after replacing the explorer.exe file supplied.
It lost its activation, its saying its not genuine. I bought it from reputed store! Its 100% genuine. I have tried to replace the explorer.exe; but, even after the replacement its saying its a counterfeit copy!
I called MS to activate over phone, but their saying to format and activate…
Is there any way to activate it without formatting?
No, you have no way left. Back up the files and perform a fresh format.