While installing a theme pack (.deskthemepack or .themepack) is a straight-forward job in Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1, installing a third-party visual style (popularly known as theme) isn’t as easy as it sounds. For those who don’t know, a theme pack only changes the desktop background, window and taskbar color, while a visual style changes window border frames, caption buttons, taskbar style, and some other areas of the operating system.
As you may know, a visual style downloaded from the web can’t be installed in Windows by default. In other words, because of some security restrictions, Windows doesn’t let you install third-party themes and allows themes signed by Microsoft only.
In order to install themes in all recent versions of Windows, you need to first modify or replace three original system files: uxtheme.dll, themeui.dll, and uxinit.dll. When it comes to automatically modifying system files to add support for third-party themes, Windows users have two options to choose from: UXStyle Core and UXTheme Patcher.
If you have already upgraded to Windows 8.1 and looking to customize the default look of the operating system by installing a new visual style downloaded from the web, you’ll be glad to know about the availability of Ultra UXTheme Patcher software. Yes, the developer of popular UXTheme Patcher has just updated the program to 2.1 beta and it now supports Windows 8.1 as well.
The cool thing is that when you install UXTheme Patcher it backs up original system files before replacing or modifying them sot that the original files can be replaced when required by uninstalling the software.
As with the case of previous versions, this version of UXTheme Patcher is also compatible with both 32-bit and 64-bit systems.
We recommend you create a system restore point before installing this software as replaces or modifies original system files. To uninstall UXTheme Patcher and restore your Windows files to the original state, you need to completely uninstall UXTheme Patcher via Programs and Features.
Since UXTheme Patcher isn’t a commonly downloaded program, the SmartScreen protection in Windows 8.1 might show you warning message when you run the setup file for the first time. Simply click More info option and then click Run anyway button to install the program.
Once the program is installed, you’ll be asked to perform a system reboot. Restart your PC and then install your favorite visual style designed for Windows 8.1.
And if you’re an UXStyle Core user, note that the current version of UXStyle Core software doesn’t support Windows 8.1 update. According to the developer, a version of the software is coming soon for Windows 8.1.