Windows 7 has many excellent new features and Aero is definitely one of them. But whilst Aero can be a blessing, enabling you to move to and from the desktop without closing or minimising open windows using Aero Peek and move and resize open windows with ease with the Aero Snap feature, Aero can be a real pain if it misbehaves.
Two of the most common problems are with Aero’s transparency feature and the control of open windows. Here are two simple fixes for solving both these problems.
Aero Transparency Feature
If the transparency feature of Aero is not working correctly and you are unable to access your desktop by making open windows transparent, it may be that the feature is simply turned off. To remedy this problem, click on Start, type ‘Aero’ into the box and select ‘Find and fix problems with transparency and other visual effects’ from the available options. All you then have to do is click on ‘Next’ and Windows 7 will run a troubleshooting wizard and will automatically attempt to resolve the problem. If this fails to find a cure, try searching for updated drivers for your computers graphics hardware – it could be that your graphic drivers are out of date and you need the latest version to run Aero.
If either of these methods is unsuccessful, it could be a Registry problem. Launch REGEDIT by clicking Start and typing ‘regedit’ into the box. Once REGEDIT is open find the Registry key:
Ensure that ‘EnableAeroPeek’ is set to 1 and not 0. Aero Peek is the feature that allows you to see your desktop by making other windows transparent. Hopefully, one of these 3 fixes will have solved the Aero transparency problem.
Open Window Control Issues
Aero Snap allows you to move open windows about and resize them all in one go. This can be a great timesaver but when it goes haywire it can be very irritating – especially when open windows start flying all over the place uncontrollably. If this does begin to happen, the good news is that Aero Snap can be disabled quite easily and without affecting the performance of Windows 7.
To disable Aero Snap, open the Control Panel and select ‘Ease of Access’. Now choose either: ‘Change how your keyboard works’, or ‘Change how your mouse works’. For either option you will find a ‘Make it easier to manage Windows’ section. From this section, check the option to ‘Prevent Windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the edge of the screen’, then click OK.
This has now disabled Aero Snap and open windows will not move unless you move them manually.
If it was not already, the Windows 7 Aero feature should now be running smoothly and you can continue to enjoy the many features that Aero has to offer.