The Aero interface that came with Windows Vista and Windows 7 was a defining look for the past two version of the Windows operating system. Windows 8, obviously, moved far away from Aero UI.
A large portion of users still have hearts for Aero, and some even signed petitions like this asking Microsoft to bring back the Aero look officially to Windows 8. Don’t know about official, but an unofficial solution recently popped up that does a pretty neat job of bringing some glass to Windows 8.
This little program is conveniently called Aero Glass for Win8. Developed by a programmer (bigmuscle) that frequents the MSFN message boards, the application is now on v0.3, and recreates the aero glass look in Windows 8 using the Desktop Window Manager.
As this (deeply technical) statement from the developer details:
“I have developed DLL library in C++ which is injected into dwm.exe process (no system files replacement is required). Then, the functions used for window border drawing are hooked with my own implementation. This ensures that anytime DWM wants to draw the window border, the code is redirected into my library where I can change the parameters of vertex buffer, blend state and other stuff. Then I redirect back to the original drawing function. Transparent window border is drawn!”
Yeah, I said it was deeply technical.
The program, however, is currently only available for the 64-bit builds of Windows 8.
The developer says that this is still a preview version, meaning we can expect a bunch of improvements in future releases. Either way, the program is not at all resource intensive, and most users will notice no performance issues whatsoever.
Still, it was only a matter of time before people released tweaks like these. First the Start Menu, and now Aero — two of the biggest features of previous version of Windows have made it to the latest one. Wonder what’s next?
If you do install or plan on doing so, share your experience for other users here. There may yet be some programs or software that may be incompatible with this little tweak.