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I’m guessing that the screen savers themselves doesn’t need any introduction. Many people like the Mystify, Ribbon or Bubbles screen saver, but secretly wish they could tweak them, ever so slightly. Having just one mystify ribbon scrolling over your screens – it seems lonely. Having a small monitor, the bubbles get too big.

Word has it that the people behind the screen savers did intend to add a settings menu to them, but never got around to it. Nevertheless, they all come with a few hidden settings that you can tweak.

And here’s how…

There are two ways to go about tweaking, one of which involves editing the registry. The other way requires downloading a set of Windows Scripts (HTA-files), made to tweak the registry for you. But first lets check out the registry settings for each. Also, when you open the Registry Editor you will notice that the screen savers have an intended option for dual monitor layout, though I have not tested this feature as of yet.

To change the settings, open the registry editor at the following location:

HKey Current User\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Screensavers\Ribbons and HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Screensavers\

Bubbles Screen Saver

There are three settings available for the Bubble Screen Saver: Background and Bubble transparency and Size.

Open the Bubbles Folder in the above location, and add the following DWORD KEYS

  • MaterialGlass – Option ‘0’ or ‘1’, meaning transparent or not
  • ShowBubbles – Option ‘0’ or ‘1’, I’m guessing you get this one
  • Radius – There are four settings here that range from small to huge. A value of 1100000000 gives you Small bubbles, 1110000000 gives you Medium bubbles, 11200000000 gives you Large bubbles, and 1130000000 gives you even larger, or Huge, bubbles. The smaller the size, the more bubbles.
  • ShowShadows – Option ‘0’ or ‘1’, whether or not the bubbles cast shadow.

Mystify Screen Saver

You can choose between 9 different widths and have up to 100 lines dancing around your screen. Open the Mystify-folder in the above location and add the following DWORD KEYS.

  • LineWidth, Option 1 – 100
  • NumLines, Option ranges from 1000000000 to 1080000000

Ribbons Screen Saver

The settings are almost equal to the Mystify Screen saver, tho you might experience the highest settings to distort your monitor, making the screen saver not working as intended. Open the Ribbons Folder in the above location, and add the following DWORD KEYS.

  • NumRibbons, Option ranges from 1 to 100
  • RibbonWidth, Option ranges from 1000000000  to 1050000000
  • RibbonBlur, Option 0 or 1

The Blur Option might not look as intended on all monitors, and may appear as non-working.

Using tools

A very clever dude (Greg Shultz) have come up with a way to edit the registry settings using the Windows scripting language (HTA-files). The script files let you edit the settings (and test them) using an intuitive interface. Making it easier (and safer) for you.

You can download the hta-files from here


About Thomas

Computer geek from the age of 7, which amounts to 30 years of computer experience. From the early days (when every computer company had their own OS) of DOS, Windows 1.0 through Seven...

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