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What is a "shell"?


A "shell" is the desktop environment provided by the operating system (OS); the elements that allow the user to interact with the OS - Windows, menus, docks, application launchers and so on. Under Linux/UNIX this is called a Windows Manager.

In the standard Windows environment, for instance, all these functions are provided by Explorer ... which provides the Start Menu, Taskbar and System Tray, amongst other things

Why would I want a different one?


You may have seen (and tried) other shells for Windows and have:
  • Themed your desktop and made it more to your liking than the plain 'vanilla' version that comes with a normal installation
  • Used one to enable you to work more efficiently, by placing the elements of the desktop in different places that suit the way you use your computer
  • Enhanced your shell with extra elements, such as application/program launchers, gadgets/widgets, taskbars, toys and so on
Or you may:
  • Be disappointed with other offerings
  • Have an ideal way of working that no other shell lets you make use of
  • Already work that way with another operating system / desktop environment (such as Enlightenment on linux) and wish to work in a similar manner in Windows
  • Not have the time/inclination/knowledge/skills/confidence to to configure scripts, coordinates, alpha channels, etc. to create the working environment you want
  • Simply be curious about another way of doing things and want to find out more, without having to take a Masters degree in computer design ... and without running the risk of losing all the hard work you've already put in 


Emerge Desktop is an alternate Windows shell that allows you to do just that


How is Emerge Desktop different from other alternate Windows shells?


From a complete shell replacement to the addition of a single module to enhance your experience / productivity ... From a full-blown themed desktop, to a minimalist shell with no more than a mouse click required to do everything you want ... Emerge Desktop can revitalise your desktop experience as much ... or as little ... as you need 


Emerge Desktop is: 

  • Simple - You don't have to become a programmer and write complex scripts to achieve what you want; nor become a desktop architect and write pages of configuration with complex coordinate positioning of your elements
  • Flexible - You can use as much, or as little, of it as you want in order to achieve your ends ... or even replace the standard Windows shell entirely!
  • Configurable - You can hide, or show, as many of the elements as you like. The width of the bevel, border and icon size/padding and, also, the colours and gradient type for many of the elements' background and fonts can be individually configured. Elements can be positioned where you like, moved, shown/hidden and support click through, transparancy/opacity, and drop-shadows
  • Modular - You can add ... or even create ... your own elements
  • Compatible - You can use it alongside other theming tools, application launchers or even other desktop managers / shells!
  • Community Supported - There is a thriving and ... above all ... friendly and helpful community, as can be seen on the forums. People are not simply willing, but eager to help and support you, no matter how complex, or simple your question, request or suggestion may be. Involvement is encouraged and appreciated, from novices to experts and there is always a friendly welcome - We're pleased to see you! Very Happy 
SO GIVE IT A GO! 
Because
Emerge Desktop might be exactly as much ... or as little ... as you're looking for ... out of the box! 


OK. I'm convinced! How do I start?

Just follow these instructions and you will be up and running in 5 minutes!

SUPPORTED WINDOWS VERSIONS
Windows 2000 / XP / Server 2003 / Vista ( x86 and x64) / 7 (x32 and x64)