Aero Glass Can Be Enabled In Win8.1 Update 1 Leaked Build (Video)

Information continues to trickle out of the recently leaked Windows 8.1 Update 1 build.  A report by WinBeta shows a variation of the popular Aero Glass theme can be enabled in the build:

It also appears Microsoft may be working on a return of the highly popular Aero Glass theme. From what can be enabled in the recent Windows 8.1 Update 1 leak, looks like a variation of the Glass theme can be enabled. In this build, it’s extremely buggy and doesn’t work as intended to. Dragging windows with Glass enabled lags and leaves many UI errors. So this is definitely a work in progress.

The primary reason cited for the removal of Aero Glass was the impact on battery life.  Do you want Aero Glass to come back?

Update, Tom Warren reminds us:

Sigh. Aero Glass in Windows 8.1 Update 1 is not news. HideBlur is always there in beta and milestone builds. Was same in win8 and 8.1.

Source: WinBeta


  • robertwade

    Why on earth would I want Aero back? Why in this universe would ANYONE want that back? Sheesh. Why is Microsoft insisting on going backwards?

    • Jim Cherry

      its not about going backwards its about reaching backwards and pulling pple forward. Or atleast that’s what they’re attempting to do.

    • Jeff Hung

      Many users still love eye-candy interface so badly. For me Aero is just childish and waste of processor cycles.

      • Mikau

        Some of us don’t mind if we lose a few measly processor cycles.
        Some of us like the aesthetics of Aero because if shows off how good our PC is. Plus, if there was an option between the two aesthetics yet it said when you made the choice the Metro was more efficient everyone would love Microsoft. That’s part of why people don’t like Win8, because of the decreased level of access to your computer’s internal functions.

    • Simon Paul

      100% agree. Aero was better than XP, but it was still pretty gawdy. The super heavy shadows and transparent windows frames are just awful.

      However, the flat version of Aero (Windows 8 desktop) is still lacking polish. The minimize/max/close icons should be circular just like the ones on the app bars in Metro apps, etc.

      • Tirinti

        Windows must be transparent, otherwise they are walls not windows!

      • Prayaas

        Yup, we needed a more Metrofied desktop, icons included.
        Also, they should either make very functional Modern counterparts for those desktop tools and utilities (built-in) or update them with proper Modern and non-Vista look.

        • Simon Paul

          Ya, all control panel/settings should be in full metro. It’s still half and half. They don’t need to be in desktop mode anymore.

          • commander x

            Metro is crap, why would any one want the metro windows 8?

          • Simon Paul

            Trolling much? This a 3 month old comment. And you’re bringing it up just to say Metro is crap?

            Metro is great, especially for touch. They made some mistakes implementing it for desktop/mouse based systems. But that really isn’t a flaw with Metro, just a flaw in their way of implementing it. You can make a very effective, mouse friendly UI using the principles of Metro.

          • Mikau

            They probably haven’t because Microsoft realizes that they will lose the majority of their consumer base. Around 10% of consumers use windows 8. And if you didn’t like the look of 7, you set it to classic and it would look very minimalistic. I just upgraded to Windows 7 and I am loving it to death. The sleek look makes it feel more organic and friendly. Windows 8 feels like a robot.

    • Tirinti

      Lack of the Aero Glass is the worse bug in Windows 8.
      It was going back to the times of ugly Windows 2000 from the previous milenium.

      • Simon Paul

        Why do you need transparencies? Why do you need heavy shadows? Why do you need lots of confusing gradients?

        YOU DON’T. Simply put, the times of the over the top, skeumorphic interfaces are coming to an end.

        • Dino

          Because transparency is sooo natural


          • Ryan

            Lol, iOS 7 is flat, yet it has transparencies such as Control Center and Notification Center.

            I bet Aero Glass could make a comeback in Windows 8.1 update, 8.2, or 9, and may have been a mistake to leave it out in the first place. In fact, it wouldn’t have to be called “Aero Glass” to distant away from skeuomorphsim. Actually, I have always liked Aero since Vista first came out (initially buggy but fixed with SP1 and SP2) and would be glad to have it back.

        • Delphi Programmer

          You’re simply arguing taste. Maybe you don’t like caption bar translucency, but others may like it. It’s about freedom to choose. Why does Microsoft have to impose a look and feel on everybody? What’s so wrong with giving people a choice to make their computer look like they want it to? Why not leave “Aero” as an option? You know… individuality… it kind of went out in the ’70s, but that doesn’t make it bad!

          • Simon Paul

            I don’t mind transparencies on some things like the Task bar in Windows 8. The transparent title bar on Window Frames in Win7 is hideous. And so is the super heavy shadows around each window.

            While everyone has opinions, there are BAD UI designs. Some people like crazy busy backgrounds on their already chaotic Android home screens. However, from a usability standpoint, its HORRIBLE. Ugly, and very difficult to find things on a cluttered background. Yes, people have different tastes, but some literally have bad tastes.

          • Delphi Programmer

            Windows 10 is bringing back a lot of things that were dropped in Windows 8. I think the option for transparent title bars may be one of them.

        • andyrwebman

          They’ll be back – I predict a backlash against the boring flat desing ethic in a few years. Most people find it dull and uninspiring in a desktop environment.

          What a dull person you must be – I bet your house or flat is one of those minimalist monstrosities with nothing to please the eye.

          • Simon Paul

            And the troll strikes again. Personally attacking me because I like flat design? Ya, sounds like a troll to me.

          • John Baker

            But it’s OK for you to question the taste of people who don’t like flat design? Yeah, sounds like a double standard to me…

        • Mikau

          So Microsoft controls our preferences now instead of giving us an option between aero glass and metro?

    • captain kirk

      Aero was beautiful. Windows 8 looks like Windows 2.0. Windows 8 has no border on the Windows and Windows are sometimes hard to distinguish when stacked. 100% of computer professionals I know are sticking to Win 7. The clock cycles that transparent borders use is so minuscule. Let the users make the choice like Windows 7 allowed.

    • andyrwebman

      What, you mean by going backwards to colourless windows 3.1 title bars?

      Not every subsequent step is a step forward. You have “emperor’s new clothes” syndrome.

  • desmond

    Dear Microsoft, I’m seek and tired of the fact that there are loop holes in your various departments. The rate at which products being developed are constantly being leaked is horrible. Why must engineers woking on a project share those projects illegally. It tells less of the company. All department working on a project should be held responsible if such happens. Windows 8.1 is yet to be launched yet we have it on our laptops. Its really bad of you guys.

    • chris.c

      I wouldn’t mind getting leaks about the upcoming Windows Phone 8.1 Update. Just sayin’..

      • Prayaas

        And kill the buzz too. You see, when Apple unveils new things, people are blown away because it is all too much. I mean, there is A LOT.
        Here the scenario is more like,
        Most blogs: Windows (whatever) update brings (whichever) new feature!
        People: “Hmm, progress, going in right direction.” “Metro sucks.” “Microsoft fail.” “Windows keeps getting better and better.” “I’m going to rant.”
        A little while later,
        Microsoft announcement: “We are proud to announce —”
        People: “Meh, 1 month old news.” “Microsoft, you seriously need to stop being lazy.” “Useless updates – no new features.” etc. etc.

        • chris.c

          Agreed. And in the meantime, perhaps Nokia will finally release the Black update to 620’s. They’re like the only model left for update in Europe.

        • andyrwebman

          So you buy for the buzz, and not because of a rational assessment of the advantages?

          Says a lot.

  • Emi the Strange

    honstly… this is just the same theme but with transparecy… that doesnt look like the old aero glass, just look at the taskbar in win8, it has transparency, but you wont say “oh its aero glass taskbar”

    so no, this is not aero glass, its just transparecy since some people want it. hopefully we can turn it off, if you want to, both Windows and taskbar, and enable it whenever we want to.

    if it was like winvista or 7, the glass would look like it, never really liked it. but this is just transparency, no more.

  • EU citizen

    since i got used to win8, im really not looking forward to aero making a comeback, i see no need for it.

    • Tips_y

      True, so I hope it does not become the default but will stay as an option that can be turned-on for people who like that eye-candy.

  • Tirinti

    At last they will fix this bug.
    I don’t understand why people are talking so much about obsolete start menu and not about Aero Glass, the best parto of Windows Vista and 7.

  • Antonioerre

    Just “no thanks”. :)

  • freshfelicio

    I never understood why the taskbar in Win8.x is transparent and the windows not. I mean, I hate the glossy look of Win7 with all the reflections, but i would like Windows that look like the taskbar. And they should also do something about the close/minimize/… buttons, they were just taken from Windows 7 and made flat. Doesnt look good.

    • Simon Paul

      Agreed on the min/max/close buttons. They are horrible on Windows 8. And very hard to press on touch!

    • Mikau

      Dude the glossy look is made it so sleek and magnificent, not that crappy square blandly-colored metro crap.

  • seanriddolls

    A developer has deployed a stable version of Aero Glass for Win8 & Win8.1, and is offering it for distribution over at: at

    I am using it now, and it is quite robust, surviving crashes and any other standard system problems I can throw at it. The author claims that it is deeply integrated into the system, not merely piggybacking on the existing UI.

    The interface now features a blurred transparency in the head and frame of every window, contrasted title text, and a slight drop shadow. The active window takes on the hue of the background image, similar to the taskbar.

    The only drawback is that it watermarks the developer’s URL on the corner of the desktop, and reminds you to register the product at start up, until you make a donation.

    • Travis Rector

      I like it. It looks better than the Aero Glass on Windows 7. Just looks simplified, if that’s the best way to explain it.

  • eddietrix

    Don’t listen to the bad comments Microsoft! I love windows 8.1!! and the updates. And yes i would like the startmenu from 7 and aeroglass toooo.

  • Cherif Ayad

    I want Aero Glass to come back

  • Cherif Ayad

    How to enable transparency in windows 8.1