Nifty-looking wallpapers will always cheer you up regardless of the operating system you adopt; and the solutions as far as wallpaper managers go are not at all scanty on Windows. However, not all of them bring the cool pictures, too. Color Desker is an extremely simple solution whose strongest feature is represented by the images themselves.
Although the application is free of charge, the developer inserted a donation button in the interface; pressing it will open a new browser window from Paypal asking for a fixed donation of $0.99. As the developer puts it, this optional and it is more to show your support for the project rather than getting the developing team rich.
No installation is required to run the application. Simply unzip it and launch the executable file. As soon as you start it Color Desker automatically looks for a new version issued by the developer and if it finds on you are asked to download it. The entire procedure is straightforward and does not require any effort from your part as the program automatically replaces its files with the latest versions.
The interface is plain and simple, focusing on presenting the wallpapers available rather than the list of settings put at your disposal. At the time of the review there are 201 images to pick from, all of stunning quality.
Right-clicking on any of them gives the possibility to set them as desktop background. The app incorporates a rating system, which gives you the possibility to express your like or dislike of a picture.
Moreover, the menu reveals sorting options, letting you view the least used items or the most popular among Color Desker community. Those working with the program long enough can learn the set of keyboard shortcuts for rating or sorting activities.
The search box in the upper right hand part of the application window enables you to look for wallpapers with a specific text in their name. However, we noticed that the results are merely highlighted in the 201 items list, instead of being reduced to the relevant entries, which makes pinpointing all the results a bit confusing.
Also, this approach is not particularly handy if you try to locate images relating to more general field. Tagging the photos would be a solution as the search is no longer confined by the name of the item.
The manual approach for switching the wallpapers is available in the context menu of every item. However, there is also the alternative of automatically changing the desktop picture at a specific time interval.
The option is accommodated in the lower part of the main application window, where you get the details about the image currently hovering the mouse over. You cannot set your own interval, but the list of choices should pretty much cover your needs as the background image can switch every 5, 10, 15 or 60 minutes.
It appears to be no particular order they’re rotated in, and you have no control over this activity, either; so each time the image changes it’ll be a surprise.
Color Desker is extremely simple in both functionality and features. Compared to what Windows 7 offers by default the application stands out only through the increased amount of wallpapers it puts at your disposal.
Among the drawbacks of the program there is the restriction to use only the pictures downloaded from the online repository of the developer. A more flexible application of this kind would offer the possibility to add a custom image folder and rotate them on the desktop as well.
When opening the software for the first time you won’t have access to the wallpapers since it has to download them first. They are stored in a temporary folder on your machine, at “C:\Users\%Username%\AppData\Local\Temp\ColorDesker”.
We tried adding our custom set of pictures in this location, but unfortunately they were not successful in adding them to the list in the main application window.
As far as system resources go, Color Desker does not exaggerate, and it won’t hinder your work on the computer. During our tests it showed little CPU activity when in stand-by, but throttled from zero to about 30% the moment it had to rotate the desktop picture. RAM usage, on the other hand, would keep to a constant 50MB. The Good
No installation is needed to run the software. It brings a varied set of wallpapers which can be switched automatically with a specific frequency.
Rating and sorting systems let you organize the items so that only the popular images are displayed in the application window, or just the ones you like. The Bad
The only location to get the pictures is the developer’s online repository. Search system needs to be improved so that users can look for images according to a category they belong to, or tags. When rotating the images resource usage increases noticeably. The Truth Color Desker
is far from being a mature, complete wallpaper manager. It is still in an early stage of development and doesn’t offer much compared to the solution offered by default in Windows 7. However, it puts at your disposal images of stunning quality, at a resolution of 1900x1200.