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September 6, 2012
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Windows classic theme for Windows 8 RTM by kizo2703 Windows classic theme for Windows 8 RTM by kizo2703
For everyone who prefer classic Windows theme, this is the closest to the original theme.

Just move it to C:\Windows\Resources\Ease of Access Themes folder and use it.

Of course, You can use this theme file on both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows 8.
Applying the Classic theme will change the Start screen background and tile color to classic view as well.
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X12-1992 8 hours ago  Hobbyist Writer
another thing you can do is right click the taskbar go to properties and select small icons and set it so taskbar buttons never combine.
With this and Classic shell* I think I've gotten as close as I ever going to get.
So, thanks a bunch! I really hated the default theme the minute I laid eyes on it.

Is it impossible to get the "exact" classic theme that Windows 7 had? This one is just a recolor of the Metro theme.
tidalgate Apr 11, 2014  Hobbyist
Yes, apparently MS pulled the engine that was used for the old classic theme. So this is about as close as you can get, a recolor of the high-contrast theme.
The most important aspect of the classic theme was pronounced 3D relief. Even relatively modern "Office 97" style themes had it, but used more mouse hot-tracking effects where 3D was added upon mouseover only. Input controls were generally etched into a layer below the basic gray chrome and were white or lighter. Pressable buttons stuck out.

Windows Eight is flat but uses color sparingly to provide the distinction between different kinds of controls. Your visual style remains flat and also removes all color. One can no longer tell an inactive label apart from an input field, or a disabled control from a usable one.

I may be using incorrect terms, but as an artist you must be able to 'feel' that the above is 'wrong'. If you want to see the real, rich classic theme in action, get something like Office 2000 or an older Windows operating system, like Me or 2000, in a virtual machine.

Windows Seven shell (Explorer), where DWM can still be disabled without hacks, no longer uses correct colors for most of the new dialogs. And new 3rd party applications, sadly, also tend to "fall apart" (text doesn't fit) and look bland (lots of blank space) in classic view, because the authors never designed them to be rendered like this. The sad truth may be that one will have to accept the ugliness of Eight if one wishes to use recently released software.
solpraxis Mar 23, 2014  New member
I have lost my notebook with the color palette choices so this is great. Thank you.
krisiskiller101 Jan 29, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Brings back memories!
Why is the area which is supposed to white (inside the chrome of the window) also gray? Can you please make that white?
Guys, it's hi contrast theme. If You want ''real'' classic theme look, You should then find and install something else.

For instance, something like this:…
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