Anyone would get bored looking at the same computer screen day after day. Changing the look of your system with new wallpapers and themes every now and then makes it feel fresh. Applying new themes isn’t all that hard; it’s looking for the perfect theme that takes a fare bit of time. Back in 2009, we compiled a list of great themes for Windows 7, and now, after a long time, we have put together for you a collection of awesome Windows 8 themes. While the themes remain roughly the same, a major (and much needed) addition in Windows 8 personalization now allows you to apply a different wallpaper to the each display in a dual-monitor setup. In what follows, you’ll find some of the best themes from deviantART and Windows’ own downloads page, plus a little surprise for our dual-monitor users.
Applying Third-Party Themes
Windows 8 doesn’t allow you to add custom or third-party themes by default without modifying or patching three system files; themeui.dll, Uxlnit.dll and uxtheme.dll. You needn’t fret though, as you can easily patch these files via UltraUxThemePatcher. Simply download the application and then follow some simple on screen instructions to install it. The files will be automatically replaced during the installation, though you will have to restart your PC for the changes to take effect.
Now, you can simply download any of the themes included below and copy the .theme file and its pertaining folder to:
Third-Party Themes & Visual Styles
If you want to give your desktop a complete makeover, then what you want is a full skin or visual style, which replaces system files to provide you with deep customization instead of merely changing the wallpaper. deviantArt is probably the best place to look for such themes, but it’s a huge community with a lot to offer. So, to spare you the hassle of having to browse through countless search results and portfolios, we’ve picked out some of the best themes from there.
Aero By Design (by ~LiveOrDieTM)
Ourea (by ~neiio)
Simplex (by ~link6155)
Areao4.8 (by ~neiio)
Platinum (by ~ZEUSosX)
Alduin (by ~charleston2378)
Work for Windows 8 (by ~neiio)
Dark 8 (by ~Gr8StyleX)
Dumbass V8 (by ~neiio)
Gray 8 (by ~gsw953onDA)
Incomplete VS (by ~sinopt)
Night Smooth (by ~neiio)
Space Blueberries (by ~neiio)
TwentyThirteen (by ~Sand-And-Mercury)
If you are not a fan of customizing every UI element and just want a pack of some cool looking wallpapers, you might be interested in the themes on offer on the official Windows website. Below are our favorite themes from the collection.
Panoramic Themes (For Dual-Monitor Setups)
Panoramic themes are a little different from the regular ones in terms of how they are displayed on your screen. In a dual monitor setup, instead of displaying the same wallpaper on both screens or a different one on each screen, a panoramic wallpaper extends across both monitors if they have the same resolution.
That’s it for our Windows 8 themes compilation. Make sure to comment about the ones you liked best and feel free to share great themes that you think we’ve missed!
Fawad Mir contributed to this post