Do it yourself web and tech tips

Install The Windows Sidebar on Server 2008

This only involves a few steps and is very simple to get working. The first five steps can be done in a different order – it really doesn’t make a lot of difference. For all of this to work there is a registry edit which needs to be done, and, which is not documented on this page. I had performed the edit a long time ago, exported the edit as a .reg file, and saved it to a folder. Along with these instructions and some extra gadgets, the .reg file can be downloaded from this page – just double-click and approve to apply the change to your registry.

The Steps

  1. Download this package (which includes, as I’ve said, some extra gadgets). Unarchive the .zip file to anywhere that’s convenient (eg. your Desktop)
  2. Copy the Windows Sidebar folder to C:\Program Files (X86) (on a a 32-bit computer, obviously, there’s no “X86” on the end).
  3. Double-click the Windows_sidebar_reg.reg file, editing the registry.
  4. Do the following from a command prompt – again, if it’s a 32-bit computer there’s no “(X86)” in the path:

    cd C:\Program Files (X86)\Windows Sidebar\
    sidebar.exe /regserver

  5. Go to Server Manager > Features and add the Desktop Feature. This requires a reboot to complete and, by the way, on my computer it took 10 minutes or something……
  6. When the computer has rebooted and the Desktop feature is done installing, go to Services and enable the Theme service – what a shock, eh? I set mine to start automatically. Now, start the theme service manually.
  7. Right-click on your Desktop and choose Personalize. You should see an option, now, to choose a theme. At this point you need to choose the Vista Theme. As a little footnote: this will change your wallpaper (of course)…..
  8. To be perfectly honest, I can’t recall how I started the darned sidebar. I guess I just went to the program directory (C:\Program Files (X86)\Windows Sidebar) and double-clicked the executable (there is no Start Menu option nor Control Panel option to open the sidebar). The sidebar will pop-up and you can right-click on the sidebar to set various options (start at boot, etc.).
  9. Optional: Unarchive the collection of non-stock gadgets (“”) and copy and paste the extracted directory over the existing “Shared Gadgets” directory, in the program directory. I added the MSN Weather Gadget and some other stuff. I set the thing to turn itself on when the computer was rebooted – and everything worked as planned.

    That’s it.

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admin On August - 19 - 2012




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