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Transparent Screensaver

View your desktop while still saving your screen.
  [vote for,

I have come across many screensaves that are "transparent "...but really all they do is take a freeze frame of whatever is on the screen, and use that as a background for the actual screensaver. What I think would be very useful is a screensaver that is transparent, in that its actually clear: anything that changes on your desktop, or on whatever program you are running is visible through the screensaver. Of course, to make it a screensaver, there would be some part of it that moved...maybe something bouncing around the screen. I came across a screensave taht was clear like this, but had nothing else...sort of defeats the purpose of a screensaver, which is to have something moving or changing colors so as to not wear out your monitor. This would also be useful to check things like, if you have mail, or got an instant message, or something.
Face, Sep 15 2003

Esheep http://www.geocities.com/siennaj/Esheep2/
They run around your screen while you work. Yes, it's as annoying as it sounds. [Amos Kito, Oct 04 2004]

Bouncy ball http://www.screenwe...les.cfm?nav=1&sub=2
see anno... [swamilad, Nov 09 2004]


       Turn off your present screen saver and you can have a brand new screen saver, with 100% transparency!
Cedar Park, Sep 16 2003

       What's going to save the screen from my fist going through it when Windows makes me reboot the whole computer after installing a new program?
DeathNinja, Sep 16 2003

       Baked (well, on my Amiga anyway). Desktop lemmings.
DrBob, Sep 16 2003

       Sounds like that bouncing around lens effect that came with the Win95 themes pack.
waugsqueke, Sep 16 2003

       I was just gonna say what [waugs] said. It was called "Science", I believe.
jivetalkinrobot, Sep 16 2003

       Nah..."science" or whatever it was called did the freeze frame thing.
Face, Sep 16 2003

       I have see these before. Remember the christmas lights that you could get to surround the screen or the bunnies at easter. IN VB you can get a handle to the screen and write a form that is transparnent to view as well as mouse click so basically you can use yor screen normally
diarmuid, Sep 17 2003

       This happens in Win2k/2kServer also. I don't understand why I have to restart the *entire* computer because a program has been installed...
DeathNinja, Sep 17 2003

       Windows 98 is out? I'm still on 95.
grip, Sep 18 2003

       A transparent screensaver is technically impossible under Windows XP, 2000 and NT. For security reasons, Microsoft made it so the screensaver runs on a separate "desktop" that has no connection to the user's real desktop, and doesn't even have the privileges to make such a connection.   

       You could do workarounds, like running a background piece of spyware on your main desktop who is willing to broadcast the desktop's contents to whoever asks (ie. the screensaver). To my knowledge, no one has yet written such a thing, and I bet there's no great rush... Also it'd be kind of sluggish, since it'd have to "poll" the desktop for changes.
ljw1004, Sep 18 2003

       Clear Screen Saver is on the Win2K resource kit (exoensive) Supplement One CD-ROM in the Apps\clearscreensaver folder.   

       The .exe file is a service, (ljw1004's 'Spyware')   

       You could pay USD 25 per box for extra features - http://www.e-motional.com/TScreenLock.htm   

       Still looking for that combination useful and free...   

atanabalan, Nov 13 2003

       mmmmmmmmm ons tá!!!
fdocno, Mar 17 2004

       Its my understanding that modern screens don't actually need saving. Am I wrong?
RobertKidney, Mar 17 2004

       //A transparent screensaver is technically impossible under Windows XP// Well if that's what they were trying for, they've failed.   

       Any exe can be made into a screensaver by changing the extension to scr and copying it to system32 folder. EDIT: I just remebered, copying to system32 folder is not required. Right click scr file in any folder, and click Install.</edit>
It will lack a few features, like the ability to turn off automatically with movement or keypresses.

       I downloaded a little bouncy ball exe, and made it a screensaver just the way I described. The desktop remains visible and continues to update just as normal and the ball program opens and bounces as its programer designed.   

       The ball I used [link] requires interaction after about 2 seconds, but a program like Esheep (Amos' link), would probably be more active, so make a better screen saver.   

       I've done this on 98 machines and NT 4.0 machines (and XP, of course) with calc.exe. On NT, I found that it would open multiple instances, about one per second, until I stopped it. Good trick for the workplace.
swamilad, Nov 09 2004


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