Classic Shell

Smoked Glass [7 style]
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Author:  juniper7 [ Wed Jul 11, 2018 5:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Smoked Glass [7 style]

Smoked Glass [7 style] for CSM ver4.3.0

Clearing out my locker, so to speak,
I found a nearly finished "Smoked Glass" [7 style] conversion skin.
I just had to make a bigger Hidpi user picture from the classic style. Done.

This skin works similar to original classic style skin.

On Win10
The trick to get the greyer look is checking "Reduce glass color" skin option.
To get all the color out, go to "Menu Look" Tab and set "Glass opacity" to "0" or,

uncheck "Enable menu glass" option. That will switch on Ivo's modified alpha opacity look. :)

If you want darker still, pick "Dark opaque" skin option that sets menu opacity to region.

Can always uncheck "Reduce glass color" and use "Override glass color" option to use the color picker.

EDIT: Added Smoked Glass [Classic1/2]

Not sure if anybody wants an updated Classic 1/2 Smoked Glass skin with the bigger user picture for Hidpi.
In some conditions, the original skin shows horizontal streaks on the menu.
I used Ammonia D (dither noise) to reduce those streaks, same as on the 7 style.
For some reason, the original skin has font -10 on main with small font -9 on submenu,
as the default look with large font turned off.
I made the main -9 to match sub.
If anybody wants like original skin, I can upload. Just let me know.

See a few below posts below to see a picture of streaks. :)

EDIT: Whoops! :oops:
I forgot about the bug where the programs tree box does not show correct brightness level,
when "Glass blur" not available on Windows 8/8.1
This option patch sets the Programs background from "transparent"
to a specific hex value.

Skin.7 upgraded to revision B

EDIT: The Classic style is now revision C due to 2nd column separator was not showing on HIDPI

Smoked Glass [462.5 KiB]
Downloaded 1789 times
Smoked Glass revB.skin7 [330.5 KiB]
Downloaded 2133 times
Smoked Glass 7 style.png
Smoked Glass 7 style.png [ 314.9 KiB | Viewed 33336 times ]

Author:  JohnBurns [ Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:55 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

Thank you for posting and continuing Classic Start Skins activity, juniper7. Your work in here is really appreciated. I hope you will continue wherever the forums ends up. Great work!

Author:  juniper7 [ Thu Jul 12, 2018 10:37 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

It's getting close to the end for me. Scraping the bottom of the barrel.
It's been fun to make all kinds of skins. Hacking the way around the rules to make something.
Too bad every Microsoft update changes/breaks some look of the skin from what it was meant to look like.
That's life though, nothing lasts forever.

Case in point:

Due to Windows 10 ever-changing looks,
as of today right this minute of this day on update 1804, :lol:
I find to match the default Windows auto color taskbar, system transparency on,
with this skins default settings, requires "Glass opacity:" set to 25

Who knows what MS will change tomorrow.
They might change taskbar to be permanent fluorescent green. :lol:

Poking fun.png
Poking fun.png [ 10.73 KiB | Viewed 33210 times ]

Author:  Pipalou50 [ Sat Jul 14, 2018 5:59 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

joli !
une option pour plus de transparence, c'est possible?
sur les peaux .7 Je ne peux pas le faire bien que j'ai essayƩ de le faire, je me perds un peu avec ces fichiers .7 .. ! :?
merci pour votre travail et votre "foi" en CS!

an option for more transparency, it is possible?

on the skins .7 I can not do it although I tried to do it, I get lost a little with these files .7 ..! :?

thank you for your work and your "faith" in CS ! :P

Author:  juniper7 [ Sat Jul 14, 2018 11:00 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

Hi Pipalou50
I'll let you use your best translator.

New more transparency level? Not that I know of. Only four ways to increase transparency:

1. Setting "Glass opacity" to 0 (in the Menu Look tab)

2. Decrease the alpha level in the menu bitmap.

Most menu bitmaps have alpha channel at 170/255 to 220/255
Going lower to the maximum of 1/255 will have the most amount of transparency.
clrSharp Glass revC skin.7 has alpha channel in menu bitmap with 52/255.
Going so low means hard to read. With glass blur turned on easier to read but when menus overlap, gets very dark.
When the very first version of Creators Update came out, it made the menu overlap less black, then next update back to normal.
I noticed Windows changed the amount of blur radius at that time as well.

3.Changing the amount of color rgb color/glass color mask.

4. The only other option to make more transparent is with Big Muscle with settings at minimum,
to make it look like the Windows 7 blur, which is the most transparent Windows OS.

I can help you with changing a skins bitmaps,
but it is usually disappointing to actually try and use a menu that is very transparent.

There is a newer type of blur transparency on the latest Win 10 2018 update that we both have. It is called Acrylic.
You can see it on the Windows transparent taskbar.
They made the blur radius very large (probably around 25 to 50 Gaussian Blur as in a photo editor program).
Not very transparent at all.

Classic Shell Menu still uses the glass blur. I notice over in the GitHub coder site that is taking over Classic Shell,
that someone has requested Acrylic blur to be added to the new version of menu program.
If they do, I hope they have it as an option that can be turned on/off. For there are many skins like clrSharp,
that look good the way they are and will look terrible with acrylic blur.

I made a picture of the taskbar on top of the white settings window box. (I pulled up the taskbar)
On the left is with Classic Shell taskbar turned on using glass default option.
On the right is the default Windows 10 taskbar, which has been updated to use Acrylic transparency.
They boosted the color, changed the brightness, added noise texture along with the bigger blur.

Or are you talking about less transparency, like opaque?
If about "Region opacity" it makes the menu shadow look better on round corners,
but can't be smooth menu corners, and if not exactly 255/255 alpha channel, the menu could get darker in some places, light in others.

"Alpha opacity" Makes smoother corners, but the menu shadow is drawn thinking menu is square, showing a funny look in the right corner.

When Region and Alpha at 255/255, it lets Windows turn on Clear Type text for a sharper look.

Win 10  CS Glass blur verses Acrylic blur.png
Win 10 CS Glass blur verses Acrylic blur.png [ 79.94 KiB | Viewed 33182 times ]

Author:  Pipalou50 [ Sun Jul 15, 2018 5:51 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

I do not hate the "acrylic blur", I would even say that I like it .. ;)
I'll look at it more closely ..
thank you for your answer, if I have a problem, I know you will help me... :P

Author:  juniper7 [ Sun Jul 15, 2018 8:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

I like acrylic too. :)
I have also hated it about a year ago when Microsoft was experimenting with the technique on the calculator app.
They went too far and introduced too much yucky visible noise. With this update, the noise is smoother, less pronounced, whether on normal or dark mode. MS has learned from that and even on the developer's site for Acrylic, they put the note "Acrylic is a tool to bring visual harmony to your designs but, when used incorrectly, can result in visual noise". They have a "do's and don'ts" section for the developers.

If the coders do manage to incorporate Acrylic into the new Classic Start,(or whatever the final legal name will be) is that the effect can be turned on or off by the user so old skins can match the blur they were made for. :)

Author:  juniper7 [ Sun Jul 15, 2018 8:55 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

Back to Smoked Glass skin upgrade.

Take a look at the submenu screenshot of the Smoked Glass skin with or without dither noise.
The streaks vanish.
I like noise when it is controlled in that it is just perceptible, and yet makes an improvement.
They add this dither noise to everything digital-music, video, pictures to give the illusion of larger bit sampling.

With dither noise added verses without.png
With dither noise added verses without.png [ 32.33 KiB | Viewed 33117 times ]

Author:  Pipalou50 [ Tue Jul 17, 2018 5:31 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

what annoys me in this skin is a little bit of "blur" or "acrylic" more .. ;)

too opaque for me ...

I said the same thing for windows 10 acrylic in a comment hub : an option for a little more transparency ...

and I can not, or I forgot, how to reduce a "chouia" this opacity !!

Author:  juniper7 [ Tue Jul 17, 2018 9:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]

Acrylic is not available on Classic Shell.
There might be registry hacks to make Acrylic more transparent for the rest of system? I don't know.

About this skin.
I just copied the same as Ivo's skin.
Everything is same, just bigger hi-dpi user picture and dither noise to hide the streaks and a 7 style version.
The name "Smoked" says it all because there is grey on the RGB layer instead of black,
and the glass color intensity is a lot weaker than say Windows 10 color.
Looking at the gradients on the RGB/alpha layers,
Ivo has copied the way it looks from Vista operating system, because it is darker at the bottom,
and brighter at the top.
Whereas Windows 7 start menu gradient is darker in the middle, brighter at top and bottom,
along with more transparency.
Windows 10 menu is saturated with color, and flat (no gradient).
Ivo made the skin for Vista, then Win7, 8, 10 came out, each with different amounts of blur, transparency, and color used in the system.
So there is no way to have skin look perfect if the operating system keeps changing the way it looks. :(

If the Glass opacity (in "Menu Look" tab) is set to zero, and not good for you, then the bitmaps need to be changed to a lower alpha level.
We should change the name to something else though.

So do you have an alpha level ?/255 in mind? If I measure it at the middle of menu bitmap it is 191/255. Top 214/255, bottom 181/255
Have the same general gradient, flat, or gradient totally different?
Note. The more transparent the menu, the more the menu will look the same as other menu skins (the character is washed away).

To increase transparency.png
To increase transparency.png [ 4.96 KiB | Viewed 32992 times ]

Author:  juniper7 [ Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Smoked Glass [7 style]


Let's carry the conversation over here:


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