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This article was originally posted by Wanda Sloan of the Bangkok Post on Wednesday, January 28, 2004, and is reprinted with permission.

Sloan has been a respected technology columnist for countless years, reviewing many different technologies and software. With her down-to-earth point of view and realistic handle on technology, Sloan paints a refreshing view of where we are, and where we're going.

Bangkok Post

Prettify XP folders

The utility that Microsoft left out, Windowpaper XP lets you put colour or photo backgrounds in any Win XP folder.

If you have been using Windows for a few years, you probably remember how much you could customize each folder in Windows 98. You could arrange file listings displays and sortings but particularly you could change icons and the background for each folder.

Well it's too bad that Microsoft took out this ability for Windows XP—or did they?

The clever Bryan Callahan of Wisconsin in America discovered Microsoft didn't take it out at all, but just doesn't document or easily allow it.

So Bryan invented Windowpaper XP, an extremely easy utility that lets you make every folder look different, with its own background image and icon text colours.

This allows you, say, to have a picture of your daughter's graduation photo in the background of the "My Finances" folder. She can put a photo of Beau1 behind the lists of "My Music" for her logon, while you can put a photo of Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band on yours.

Windowpaper XP is simple to use and logical, just like all single-use utilities should be. On the website, Bryan has a good explanation of just how the software works, but for most people this program will be just a matter of install, click and use.

When you start it, you get to pick a folder to customize, and ways to dress it up, all on a single screen. Pick a graphic for background, and you will see immediately how the folder will look.

Just one note about Windowpaper XP—the changes it makes are permanent. So if you uninstall the utility, the changes you made to your folders will stick. If you want to take down Windowpaper XP, be sure you use it to change your folders to the way you want before you do so.

Bryan has a simple, clear website where you can learn more and download Windowpaper XP, at (


1 Beau is a well-known pop singer in Thailand.