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How to Rotate Windows Desktop Wallpaper and Screen Saver

Wallpaper Settings for Windows XP

You can easily set-up your computer to rotate your wallpaper photos every few minutes.  You can get beautiful wallpaper photos here at toddsmithphotography.com and make your computer screen a source of inspiration and beauty for you and everyone around you.

This tutorial works only for Windows XP.  In just a few minutes your favorite pictures will start showing up as your computer wallpaper.  And you'll never get tired of them because they keep cycling and you can keep adding new pictures to your wallpaper folder.

Download A Free Microsoft Program

Windows XP does not come with a rotating wallpaper feature built-in, but Microsoft has created a small program to do this. The first step you need to do is download this program and install it on your computer.  It is called "Winter Wallpaper Changer for Windows XP." Don't be put off by the name, you can use this program to display any pictures you want as your wallpaper.  It comes with six winter photos, but you can remove them and put your own pictures there, or pictures you download here at toddsmithphotography.com.

There is also a program for using your own pictures as your screen saver photos.  It is called "Winter Screen Saver PowerToy for Windows XP." We will show you how to set this program up further down this page.

Both the wallpaper program and the screen saver program come together in a special bundle called "Digital Photography Winter Fun Pack 2003."  The first step is to download this bundle at the following link.

Go to http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/powertoys/winterfun2003.mspx and click the WinterPhotoPack.msi link in the top right corner of the page.  

In the File Download dialog, click the Open button, and then click the Yes button to install the Fun Pack.  In newer versions of Windows XP, click the Run button.  Note: The Winter Fun Pack download components are not supported by Microsoft Corporation and are provided as is.

You will see a dowload progress bar and then another dialog box asking if you really want to run the program.  Click Run.

You will then come to a Setup Wizard window.  Click the Next button to continue.

Read the License Agreement and click the Next button.

Click Next to begin the installation.

Click Finish when the installation is successful.

Setup Your Wallpaper

Once the Digital Photography Winter Fun Pack 2003 has been installed, you will see a Welcome Screen.  Click on the Digital Photography link to get started setting up your wallpaper and screen saver.

Click on the link which says, "Winter Fun Wallpaper Changer" on the left side of the window.

At the bottom left of that screen is a link to "Launch the Winter Wallpaper Changer."  Click on that link to start the program.

You will see the Winter Fun Wallpaper Changer Options dialog box.  At the top of the screen, select Change Wallpaper at Intervals.

Next you need to create a new folder to store all the pictures that you want to rotate through as wallpaper.  The winter images are located in "\My Documents\My Pictures\Windows XP Fun Pack\Winter 2003\Wallpaper."  Step out of the Winter Fun Wallpaper Changer for a minute and use Windows to navigate to this location.  Create a new sub-folder in the Wallpaper folder.  

Rename the folder as you like.  This is where you should put pictures that you want to be used as wallpaper on your computer. Make sure that you put pictures there which have the right aspect ratio for your computer's screen resolution to avoid distortion.  It is easy to find the right wallpaper size for your computer at toddsmithphotography.com.  Just follow the directions on the download page.

Now go back to the Winter Fun Wallpaper Changer Options dialog box and find the folder you just created.  There are a lot of empty folders in the Wallpaper folder.  These can be used to put special pictures that you want to be displayed on certain days of the year.

Scroll down until you find the folder you created and then Select the folder. If you have put any photos in that folder, you will see a preview of them to the right.

It's best to keep unchecked the "Include all Subfolders" box because it can stall the program if you have too many pictures in subfolders and it tries to make thumbnails of all of them.  To avoid crashes, you may also want to uncheck the "Quick preview of all images" box if you have several hundred or more images in your folder.  The previews are not necessary for the wallpaper to work properly.

You can also make a full screen slide show from the pictures in this folder.  This is a fun way to share your pictures.  Simply click on the "Full Screen Slideshow" button to start the slideshow.

Adjust how fast the pictures rotate by sliding the slider to the time you prefer.  

You can also override your normal walpaper folder with the special wallpaper folder for a particular day of the year. This is great to show you a picture of someone when it is his or her birthday.

Choose One Still Image Option

If you prefer not to have your wallpaper images change regularly, you can easily select just one to keep as your wallpaper.

Select the "Show One Still Image" option and choose the image you want from the drop down menu.

Finally, click the "Apply" button to save your changes.  Now your wallpaper will keep you inspired while you work.  You can buy wallpaper photos here.

Coming soon... we will describe how you can set up your screen saver using your own photos.  This tutorial will be found below.