For some time I have been using a group policy and Active Desktop to set users Wallpapers however Active desktop is far from perfect.

So instead I have now started using the attached ADM to specify the desktop wallpaper and the desktop background colour.

The downside of not using Active Desktop is only bitmap images are allowed.

CLASS USER
 
CATEGORY "Custom Desktop"
 
	POLICY "Desktop Wallpaper"
            KEYNAME "Control Panel\Desktop"
            EXPLAIN "Enter the path of .bmp file for desktop wallpaper and select the required style."
	    PART "Enter the full path below to a .BMP file" TEXT
            END PART
            PART "Wallpaper Path:" EDITTEXT
	        VALUENAME "Wallpaper"
	    END PART
            PART "Wallpaper Style:" DROPDOWNLIST REQUIRED
	        VALUENAME "WallpaperStyle"
		ITEMLIST
			NAME "Centered"	VALUE NUMERIC 0 DEFAULT
			NAME "Tiled"	VALUE NUMERIC 1
			NAME "Stretched"	VALUE NUMERIC 2
		END ITEMLIST
		NOSORT
	    END PART
        END POLICY
 
	POLICY "Desktop Background Color"
	    KEYNAME "Control Panel\Colors"
	    EXPLAIN "Enter the RBG value to serve as the Desktop background color, the format must be RED BLUE GREEN using a value between 0 and 255 for each color"
	    PART "R B G using a value 0-255 for each color eg 0 78 152." TEXT
        END PART
        PART "RBG Values:" EDITTEXT 
	        VALUENAME "Background"
		DEFAULT "0 78 152"
	    END PART
	END POLICY
 
END CATEGORY

 

How To Use

Adding the ADM

  1. Download the attached file or copy the above into notepad and save it as Custom Desktop.adm
  2. Create a new GPO or modify an existing GPO
  3. Exapnd User Configuration => Administrative Templates
  4. Right-click Administrative Templates and select Add\Remove Templates
  5. Click Add and Browse and add the ADM file then click close
  6. Under Configuration => Administrative Templates you should now see and aditional category called Custom Desktop

Disable showing of only fully managed policies

Do default policies that modify registry settings are not show in the console

  1. Select Administrative Templates
  2. Open View menu => Filtering
  3. Un-tick Only show policy settings that can be fully managed and click ok

Setting a Wallpaper

  1. In your GPO expand User Configuration => Administrative Templates => Custom Desktop
  2. Double click on the Desktop Wallpaper policy
  3. Select the Enabled radio button
  4. Set the Wallpaper Path to the location where the client will be able to find the wallpaper, the wallpaper must be a .bmp file
  5. Set the Wallpaper Style to the required setting Stretched, Centered or Tiled
  6. Click Ok

Setting a Desktop Background Colour

  1. In your GPO expand User Configuration => Administrative Templates => Custom Desktop
  2. Double click on the Desktop Background Color policy
  3. Select the Enabled radio button
  4. Enter the desired  Red Blue Green value for the desktop colour in the format R{space}B{space}G for example a all Red background  would be 255 0 0 and white would be 255 255 255
  5. Click Ok

Please note that the Desktop Desktop Color is only used if “Use drop shadows for icon labels on the desktop” is unticked in System Properties => Performance Options