Make it personal

Five ways to customize your PC

If you spend a lot of time using your PC, you might want to make sure it reflects who you are and what you care about. In Windows 7, there are lots of ways to make your computer more personal, comfortable, and fun. Here are a few suggestions.

Make your PC comfortable for you

You probably want to feel at home when you're using your PC, so make sure it's easy for you to use. You can change the screen resolution so pictures and other items look their best, and you can change the size of the text on your screen so it's easier to see. For more information, see Getting the best display on your monitor.

You can also change the font (and font color) in almost any part of Windows and adjust the text on your screen so it's easier to read for long periods of time. To learn more, see Change Windows fonts and Make text easier to read using ClearType.

Feature your favorite photos in a desktop background slide show

Do you have great photos of your family that you love to see every day? Or a bunch of vacation photos that make you smile? In Windows 7, you can show off all of your favorite photos of your kids, pets, and trips in a desktop background slide show. You can choose which pictures will be included in the slide show, how often the slide show changes pictures, whether you want to shuffle your pictures in a random order, and how the pictures will be positioned on your desktop.

Group of photos with several check boxes selected
Choose which pictures to include in your slide show.

To learn more about desktop background slide shows, see Create a desktop background slide show.

Create a theme for every occasion

Do you have mood music—songs that you listen to when you're happy, sad, nostalgic, or excited? In Windows 7, you can have a theme for every mood, too. A theme is a combination of a desktop background, a window border color, sounds, and a screen saver. With a single click, you can change the appearance of your PC completely to suit whatever mood you're in. You can even create your own themes and save them so you can come back to them as often as you like. And even more themes are available online at the Windows website.

Parts of a theme
Parts of a theme

For more information about themes, see Using themes.

Add some gadgets—and change them to suit you

Your desktop is more than just a pretty face where you show off your favorite pictures—you can get lots of use out of it, too. Add gadgets to your desktop to keep track of the weather, the latest headlines, and other information you want to have at your fingertips.

Not sure you like the look of a certain gadget? Many of them can be customized—you can change the appearance, size, and other options. To learn how, see Customize desktop gadgets.

Clock options with a different clock style selected
Some gadgets, like the Clock, can be customized.

Get your taskbar in order

Do you ever wish you could organize your open windows and programs in a way that makes sense to you? In Windows 7, you can. The taskbar is the horizontal bar at the bottom of your screen, and you can customize it so it looks and works the way you want it to. You can rearrange the taskbar buttons, see previews of your open windows with Peek, and even pin your favorite programs to the taskbar for easy access.

To learn more about the Windows 7 taskbar, see the Windows Taskbar feature page and What's new with the Windows 7 taskbar?

Illustration of the taskbar buttons being reordered
You can drag taskbar buttons to move them around.

You don't have to stop there. Check out Personalizing your computer for even more ways to make your PC feel like home.