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we are currnetly building a system consisting of windows server 2008 r2 (1 of 2 redundnacy) and 2 Win7 workstations. we would like to allow the customer (end users) to change the background at their discrection. Can we do this? Any help with this would be appreciated

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If you want to change the desktop wallpaper or background of a Windows 2008 R2 server, you'll have to either

A) Use bginfo.exe from Sysinternals. It's not really changing the wallpaper like you do in Windows 7, but it does allow you to use pictures and colors. That might do what you want. And in my opinion it's way preferable to:

B) Install the Desktop Experience feature. This might require you to have good video card drivers because it'll want to install Aero glass too. And a bunch of other junk you don't want and that has no business being on a server system.

You can refer to this link for a picture walkthrough:

Though honestly, this is pretty gross and I would never recommend that any of my customers do this.

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It (option B) may be appropriate on a Remote Desktop server. My experience is that performance is not a major issue even on a machine with no GPU; in fact our RD server is a VMWare virtual machine and it runs quite acceptably. (It doesn't have a whole lot of simultaneous users, mind you.) – Harry Johnston Nov 28 '12 at 4:09

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