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Theme Deployment GPO

Posted on 2014-01-08
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Last Modified: 2014-01-20
Hi
I have created a theme (basically just wallpaper) I right click and save the theme and the them e appears in %localappdata%\Microsoft\windows\themes, when I copy to another PC (as a test) the background is black, what am I missing?

I want to be able to copy the files to the correct location via GPO and then set as the default theme for new users.

Can someone help?
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Question by:kwatt562
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39764755
Hi.

Here are some guides on how to accomplish that:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\...




On how to set the GPO

Specify the default theme


I hope this helps.

Regards
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39764773
Thanks, setting the theme doesn't seem to be the issue
I have the GPO setup to set this theme as default for new users
%localappdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Themes\themename.theme

The issue I have is getting all the files I need, as the background is black when the theme is copied to the PC.
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39764857
Did you check on this folder C:\Windows\Resources\Theme if your theme is there?


You also can configure the theme that you want, next go to Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Personalization right click on the them and save theme for sharing, this will create a folder with all files on the
%localappdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Themes\

Let us now if helped.
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39764876
Tried to do that too, it creates .themepack rather than a .theme file, that doesn't work either :(
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39764959
When you said you are trying to set the GPO is through a domain policies?

When you create the wallpaper, what was the file extension?

Example:

I have a bmp file that I want to set as a wallpaper.

Through GPO I enforce it to all my desktops on my domain, but in my %localappdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Themes that file doesn´t show as a wallpaper.bmp it shows as wallpaper.theme

So if you want to give it a try do the following:

1º  Create a a bmp or jpeg file for your wallpaper, then save it to a shared folder
2º  Create or edit the GPO and add the file path to the Desktop Wallpaper ( \\mysharedfolder\wallpaper.bmp), don´t forget to stretch it)


3º On the new client do a gpupdate /force and reboot it.
4º On the new client open the command line and do a gpresult /H GPreport.html
5º Open gpresult /H GPreport.html file and see if the Desktop Wallpaper is being apply


regards
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39765359
Yeah its through domain policies, when I save the theme it saves as a .theme. I do have the wallpaper as a .jpg, however I opted for theme as I am not allowed to lock down the background (have to give the user the option to change it)
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39765609
Microsoft says that "The "Load a specific theme" Group Policy setting is not applied correctly on a computer that is running Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2"

And for that you need to run this hotfix ->Hotfix

Take a look on the link and see if it´s similar to your case.
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39768045
Thanks, but I don't think this is the issue, as the policy for setting the theme as default isn't the issue I'm having, the problem is that I cannot get the files to work on another PC (either by pushing via GPO or by manually adding) Can I ask is there an easier way to deploy a wallpaper to a PC that is not locked down?
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39768917
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

then you have:

Default -> Value not set

Wallpaper -> path to where is the wallpaper file (\\something\wallpaper or
c:\something\wallpaper

WallpaperStyle -> 2

You can also tweak the registry by GPO, for that you have to go to:
Computer Configuration - Preferences - Windows Settings - Registry - right click new item
Group Policy Managment Editor
Hope this can help you solve the problem.

Regards
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39776199
as its a policy does that lock the wallpaper?
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39776220
No. That policy is just do edit the registry Key for the wallpaper
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39776278
thanks I tested it, it locks the wallpaper down (unable to change the picture)
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39776433
That Shouldn´t happen. But if you want to change to enable Confirm if you have this:



[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\ActiveDesktop]
"NoChangingWallPaper"=0



If not create them and put the value mention above
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Expert Comment

by:David Paris Vicente
ID: 39776459
But you also can change the policy by disabling the prevent change desktop...

Like this pic ->GPO
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39776470
Thanks, I created those DWORD values and keys, but the wallpaper is still locked :(
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Author Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39776594
Sorry I don't think this will work, can we just go back and look at themes
The issue I have is that .themepack files don't seem to be able to be pushed via GPO

If I save my theme as a .theme, it creates the .theme file in %localappdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Themes\themename.theme

the created .theme file doesn't contain the actual jpg file, a jpg is created in %appdata%\Microsoft\Windows\ called TRanscoded_wallpaper.jpg

I don't understand how they link when pushed via GPO and where the files need to go, very confused!
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Accepted Solution

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kwatt562 earned 0 total points
ID: 39783920
OK figured this out
If you save as a .theme file, then open the .theme in notepad, it will show the links to files including your jpg image.

So I ended up copying the .theme file to system32 (hardcoded to locate the jpg in system32)
then copied the jpg to system32 via GPO

Then its just a case of setting the GPO to point to that .theme file and it works
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Author Closing Comment

by:kwatt562
ID: 39793765
figured out how .theme files work in terms of the files they contain and how they look for files that are part of the theme (through opening the theme in notepad)
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