Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

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djshack
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Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by djshack »

No matter what skin I use, it bugs me that MediaMonkey does not appear "proper" in Windows Vista and Windows 7. In particular, there are no shadows on the windows; they are just flat. Even iTunes 9 finally has a proper shadowed window. To get this proper appearance, I must run MediaMonkey skin-free, which would be alright, except the standard icons and such make it look like a program from the mid 1990s.

Can you please update the skin-free look, or provide more native-looking skins that have either a normal Windows border, or the shadow? Thank you.
lf0
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

I strongly support this request!

Part of it is already in a related bug thread.
Also look at Vista with Delphi as MM seems to be written in Delphi (???).

Important for the Listview is:

Code: Select all

  SetWindowTheme(AHandle, 'explorer', nil);
(Also see here)

To get:
Image

Hope this gets integrate some time ;-).
When MM does not use some fancy custom widgets this should really be rather simple to integrate.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by nohitter151 »

I think its a problem because of the theme engine that MM uses. This wish is already entered into MM's bug tracking system:
http://www.ventismedia.com/mantis/view.php?id=2746

But my guess is that we won't see this resolved until MM 4.0.
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lf0
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

I think this bug should be more or less unrelated, as it is about themes using native drawing functions (i.e. have a theme with a aero/transparent border).
This request is about the native widgets using proper native theming functions / window flags to have better OS integration with the non-skinned version.

When there is nothing special going on with the list view and tree view, calling SetWindowTheme should be enough for those particular controls.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by rovingcowboy »

now not every one is going to windows 7. some of us are still using xp pro and some still have windows 98 and some still have win me, but i do want to know some info about windows 7.

can some one start posting screen shots of the windows mediamonkey makes in non skinned mode, and in skin mode, and what the windows are wanted to look like when used in monkey? maybe petrcbr can fix the theme engine to allow us skinners to make a native looking skin.

but what do the native win7 details look like? :o :-?
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lf0
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

Actually the Areo style is the default since Vista so for a couple of years.
Of course there need to be a check if the system is actually NT >=5.1 so Vista or 7 before applying special window flags or using new APIs. But Windows 7 support already exists in the form of the Aero-Peek support for the taskbar so it's nothing particularly special.

I really don't see the point in making a theme that mimics a proper native look, when the native look can be achieved with some minor code modifications.
First of all, themes increase memory consumption and reduce painting performance and second it is very difficult to make a proper theme that mimics the native theme, as the "native theme" in not well defined (colors can be changed, as well as fonts, even the whole look and feel can be changed).

If the "non-skinned" version is deprecated and not in development anymore, then it is something we have to accept, but if not, it should be brought to a level where Vista and 7 users don't feel estranged.

I already posted a screenshot on how a list "should" look under Vista and 7.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by nohitter151 »

lf0 wrote:I really don't see the point in making a theme that mimics a proper native look,
The point is that MM currently doesn't support aero, and the skin that I made (VitreousBlue) at least comes a little bit closer than other skins come. And let's face it, the non-skinned MM is pretty bare (especially the player).
First of all, themes increase memory consumption and reduce painting performance and second it is very difficult to make a proper theme that mimics the native theme, as the "native theme" in not well defined (colors can be changed, as well as fonts, even the whole look and feel can be changed).
Fine, but regardless of this people will want customizable themes.
If the "non-skinned" version is deprecated and not in development anymore, then it is something we have to accept, but if not, it should be brought to a level where Vista and 7 users don't feel estranged.
Where exactly are you getting this? Who says non-skinned is not in development?
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by Peke »

nohitter151 is right in one thing, for example non-skinned MM is redesigned in 3.x completely, this can be easily happen in 4.x also.

BTW Both versions are developed simultaneously and mostly only difference is that non-skinned do not have Skinning components (thus the reason for separate .exe)

Even something is not added that do not mean we do not listen (oups typo "read") I personally like the idea of making improvements in non-sinned version.
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lf0
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

nohitter151 wrote:The point is that MM currently doesn't support aero, and the skin that I made (VitreousBlue) at least comes a little bit closer than other skins come. And let's face it, the non-skinned MM is pretty bare (especially the player).
Well this feature request is about improving support for Aero (as in Vista and 7). And yes your ViterousBlue goes in the right direction but still has several glitches.
And I would be much happier about a proper native skin.
Fine, but regardless of this people will want customizable themes.
Sure. I don't see why this shouldn't be an option. I was just stating that it is inefficient (or at least redundant) to make a theme that mimics the native look and feel if I assume that the native version is still in development and thus could catch up.
Where exactly are you getting this? Who says non-skinned is not in development?
It was just an "IF" assumption. So if it is still in development, then it would be a self-evident step to have proper Aero support as this is the native look and feel since the release of Vista.

Moreover some glitches might be very easy to fix. Thus the feature request.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

Peke wrote:nohitter151 is right in one thing, for example non-skinned MM is redesigned in 3.x completely, this can be easily happen in 4.x also.
This would be another argument for having a proper look and feel with the native version, so when 4.xx is out, there is no need to redo a native-look-a-like.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by nohitter151 »

lf0 wrote:there is no need to redo a native-look-a-like.
My VitreousBlue theme is not a "native look alike". Sure, most of it was designed to blend in with Vista, but it is not designed as a "vista look alike". Also, I designed that skin in my free time. It certainly didn't interfere with the developers adding new features or fixing bugs (and I am not a developer).

Though reading your previous posts again I suppose you were just replying to Rovingcowboy and not specifically talking about this skin.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

nohitter151 wrote:My VitreousBlue theme is not a "native look alike". Sure, most of it was designed to blend in with Vista, but it is not designed as a "vista look alike". Also, I designed that skin in my free time. It certainly didn't interfere with the developers adding new features or fixing bugs (and I am not a developer).
I would never say that you shouldn't do what you like. And of course your work is a contribution and nothing negative.

I am just a bit puzzled that when a request comes up to improve the native look and feel the whole discussion turns around that themes should be used instead of just accepting that the current native look and feel is broken under Aero and hope for (or encourage) the developers to accept the feature request to improve Areo support in a future version.

Especially as I already posted some links and code that might solve some of the problems very easily (can't really tell as I don't have the source of MM ;-)).
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by nohitter151 »

lf0 wrote:I am just a bit puzzled that when a request comes up to improve the native look and feel the whole discussion turns around that themes should be used instead of just accepting that the current native look and feel is broken under Aero
There was 1 post where Rovingcowboy mentioned this, I don't think the whole discussion turned around at all. For some reason you take what one user says and think that the whole community is not with you on this wish. Trust me, I'm behind this feature request 100%. I've been waiting for proper aero and MM ever since I got my new laptop with Vista on it back in 2007. I would _really_ like to be able to use the aero borders with custom-made skins. Anyway, it should be obvious that themes can't substitute for Aero because it were possible some one (certainly me) would have done it already.
and hope for (or encourage) the developers to accept the feature request to improve Areo support in a future version.
The feature request is already in, as I already posted:
http://www.ventismedia.com/mantis/view.php?id=2746

That means that the devs know it is there and the only thing we can do is wait. Since it hasn't been implemented yet, I think we can safely assume that either:
a) it just isn't possible with MM's theme engine at this point or
b) there are several other tasks which have priority over this
Especially as I already posted some links and code that might solve some of the problems very easily (can't really tell as I don't have the source of MM ;-)).
See above. I think that if this was really that easy to solve, it would be resolved by now.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by lf0 »

nohitter151 wrote: The feature request is already in, as I already posted:
http://www.ventismedia.com/mantis/view.php?id=2746

That means that the devs know it is there and the only thing we can do is wait. Since it hasn't been implemented yet, I think we can safely assume that either:
a) it just isn't possible with MM's theme engine at this point or
b) there are several other tasks which have priority over this
And again, this is not the same issue.
This is the vice-versa request, as it is for transparency support in the themed version not the "non-skinned" one.
See above. I think that if this was really that easy to solve, it would be resolved by now.
Well the above issue is probably much more complicated as there need to be some special theme description for DWM areas.

So getting the ListView/TreeView "right" is completely independent from the problem in bug 2746 and could indeed (in theory) be solved with just a few lines of code.
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Re: Better Native Windows UI (Win7)

Post by djshack »

It's not so much that I want a native Windows 7 theme as much as I want the themes to look better in Windows 7. And, for the purpose of this, Windows Vista is equal to Windows 7 (Aero).

For an example, compare the look of iTunes 8 to iTunes 9 on Vista or 7. iTunes 9 is a clean, square window with a proper shadow that darkens when it is active and lightens when it is not. iTunes 8 just looks flat (XP style) against other windows (as does MediaMonkey currently in any theme, except non-themed). I don't mind good themes, but I just want them to fit in with the glossy, shiny, and dimensional look of Aero.
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