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Published on 10.05.07 by Brent Trahan

Turn Aero On or Off

Learn how to turn Aero effects on or off in Windows Vista.

If you’re not interested in all the new eye candy (Aero) introduced in Windows Vista, or you need a little performance boost, you can disable Aero effects.

Aero effects are:

  • The glass looking windows
  • Dynamic Windows: Windows seem to fade into the task bar when minimized.
  • Taskbar Thumbnails: When you point at a minimized window in the task bar a live thumbnail view of that window appears above it.
  • Windows Flip: A new version of Alt+Tab that shows you live thumbnails of each program running.
  • Windows Flip 3D: A very fancy version of Windows Flip.
  • Smooth Window Performance: Windows fade in or out when you open and close them.

Note: You won’t get a large performance boost if you disable Aero because the effects are mostly generated by your graphics card, not the CPU.

Turn Aero Off

  1. Right-click an empty space on your desktop and select Personalize.
  2. Click Window Color and Appearance in the Personalization window.
  3. Click Open classic appearance properties for more color options.
  4. Select Windows Vista Basic under Color Scheme.

  5. Click OK to turn Aero off.
  6. If you want to turn Aero back on, follow the steps above and select Windows Aero under Color Scheme.

    Note: If you don’t have a Windows Aero option under Color Scheme your computer’s hardware doesn’t support Aero.

Still need help? Ask your computer question now.

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5 Responses to “Turn Aero On or Off”

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  1. Brian says:


  2. spinotter says:

    Markus –

    It is not correct to speak of Aero affects (unless you mean something very deep indeed, which I doubt). The word you should be using is “effects.”

  3. Brent Trahan says:

    Thanks for the correction Spinotter.

  4. Jason says:

    I came here looking to see how to turn aero on for my wife as she likes the dreamscapes and saw this line

    “Note: If you don’t have a Windows Aero option under Color Scheme your computer’s hardware doesn’t support Aero.”

    I’m running a e8500 processor with 8GB of ram on an xfx 780i board with a BFG 9800gtx video card…I think that maybe there are other reasons that will keep it from showing as it’s not showing on my box.

    If any one can think of something else that would keep it from showing up or can tell me where to browse to find it that would be great :)


  5. Jason says:

    Ugh..ok I had a different issue. I didn’t realize that “Windows Vista” is “Windows Aero”. The real problem I am having is that the theme is getting set to “Modified Theme” when I select a Dreamscape and THAT is what is then telling me Aero isn’t turned on…sigh…sorry guys.

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