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Active Desktop and BGInfo

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snorky View Drop Down
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    Posted: 22 June 2009 at 10:22pm

Hello Sysinternal people!

I'm new here and I've tried searching for this problem on google and this forum for quite some time and there are a few posts/blogs that touch on it but don't quite answer the question for me (either that or I'm just not interpreting them correctly).
 
Anyway I have Active Desktop enabled (as per company policy) and set to load a specific background. I also would like to have BGInfo display it's information OVER the active desktop background. I've noticed that the BGInfo is working but when my wallpaper policy GPO kicks in the current wallpaper and the BGInfo is basically covered up with the active desktop background.
 
Is there a way to continue using the active desktop background and have BGInfo display on top of that as opposed to behind?
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SvenBomwollen View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SvenBomwollen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 June 2009 at 10:53pm
Hello, snorky.

Somehow you are in a plight: BGInfo by default takes the user's wallpaper, adds its information, writes the changed wallpaper to the desktop and exits. Active Desktop defeats this idea, because, as you keep on experiencing yourself, Active Desktop may apply changes to the desktop at any time thus eliminating the wallpaper painted by BGInfo.

I wonder whether instructing BGinfo to run as a systray icon and popup its information on request only may be a workaround:
Full\path\to\bginfo.exe /nolicprompt /timer:0  /taskbar
or
Full\path\to\bginfo.exe Full\path\to\bginfoconfig.bgi /nolicprompt /timer:0 /taskbar

Quote Is there a way to continue using the active desktop background and have BGInfo display on top of that as opposed to behind?
Well, maybe you can convince the Windows admins to include BGInfo in the group policy which activates the company wallpaper. I.e. BGInfo would take the official wallpaper, add its information and paint the resulting bitmap on the desktop.

Kind regards,
SvenBomwollen



Edited by SvenBomwollen - 22 June 2009 at 11:01pm
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snorky View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote snorky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 June 2009 at 2:17pm
SvenBomwollen,
 
Thanks for your reply! :) Luckily in my case I am the systems administrator! Your last line:
Quote Well, maybe you can convince the Windows admins to include BGInfo in the group policy which activates the company wallpaper. I.e. BGInfo would take the official wallpaper, add its information and paint the resulting bitmap on the desktop.
Interests me. How do I go about making this work?
 
Thank you Sven!
 
Snorky
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SvenBomwollen View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SvenBomwollen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 June 2009 at 2:52pm
Hello, snorky.

The answer / solution largely depends on what your group policy really does.

Let us suppose that the group policy is activated just once after a user's logon. It makes sure that the official company wallpaper gets activated. And that's it.
In this case, the change would be
  • to make the group policy launch BGInfo instead

  • to make sure that BGInfo copies the official company wallpaper .JPG file
    Launch BGinfo => button "Background" => "Use these settings"
    Wallpaper bitmap: <select the official company wallpaper .JPG file>
    Wallpaper position: <select the desired display type "tile", "stretch" or "center">
    Tick the option to "Make wallpaper visible behind text"
    Save these settings to a configuration file

  • Make sure that the folder where you store the configuration file is readable to everybody.

  • Make sure that the group policy launches BGInfo like this:
    Quote Full\path\to\bginfo.exe Full\path\to\bginfoconfig.bgi /nolicprompt /timer:0

In case your group policy is more complex and/or in case you are really using active desktop elements which change the desktop background periodically, things may be more complicated.

Kind regards,
SvenBomwollen

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snorky View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote snorky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 June 2009 at 2:54pm
Sven,
 
It's really not that complicated it's just a simple replace the background to basically brand the desktop. I think taking the active desktop off and just using the BGInfo will work for the most part so I will just go that route.
 
Thanks for taking the time to explain Sven!
 
Snorky
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