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So, my guestion is "easy" in nature, not so easy in solution...

my boss came up with a brilliant idea of having wallpapers changed every 30 minutes or 1 hour or something. In short, he wants active desktop from windows 7 but this pushed through a GPO.

For windows XP machines we would like this to work as well, but if we can get it working on windows 7 machines for now that'd be great.

anyone able to point me to a guide, how to, or tell me how to get started on this and where to find the right option to do this in the GPO's ?


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Any idea why your boss wants this? Is it to improve productivity or operational efficiency or just because it's "kool"? – joeqwerty Sep 6 '10 at 14:50
I'm not sure if you're being facetious or not with using the word 'brilliant' about your boss' idea. I personally think it's pretty dumb, but I digress. Why not just let your users choose which wallpaper they'd like to use? – GregD Sep 6 '10 at 14:50
That seems like a waste of IT resources. Perhaps someone should tell your boss that you may have more productive things to focus on :) – MDMarra Sep 6 '10 at 14:50
Let me guess, your boss wants to cycle pictures of HIS kids through every 30 minutes on all the machines? ;) – GregD Sep 6 '10 at 14:55
I was being sarcastic when I said brillaint, but the bottomline is, I find it stupid, a waste, my collegues find it stupid and a waste... but the boss is the boss so... I need to get this done ... – Entity_Razer Sep 7 '10 at 12:06
up vote 4 down vote accepted

You should be able to do this fairly easy. Although, as many have commented, it could be particularly irritating to users.

  1. Create your customized theme.
  2. Deploy the custom theme to clients, including wallpaper images.
  3. Configure Group Policy to select your custom theme.

The .theme file format is fully documented in this MSDN article. You will be particularly interested in the Slide Show section. The Group Policy option titled "Load a specific theme" can be used to select your theme. There is also a policy option to disable users from changing the theme.

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