Apply Windows 7 Themes Using AutoHotkey and Bat File

Ever wondered if it’s possible to apply Windows 7 themes using a single keystroke? It sure as hell is possible!

How to quickly apply Windows 7 themes

Download And Install AutoHotkey

1. Step Head over to and download the fantastic installer
2. Step After the installation get familiar with Autohotkey

You will find various Autohotkey tutorials on our site:

Create Batch File To Apply Windows 7 Themes

As described in our tutorial how to schedule Windows 7 themes you can apply themes using a batch file.

1. Step Open the notepad editor
2. Step Insert the following text:

rundll32.exe %SystemRoot%\system32\shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL %SystemRoot%\system32\desk.cpl desk,@Themes /Action:OpenTheme /file:”C:\Windows\Resources\Themes\1.theme”

Make sure to replace the quotes with real quotes and rename 1.theme to the name of your own theme e.g. Skyrim.theme

3. Step When you save the text file, select “All files” from the dropdown and add the extension .bat to the filename

4. Step Open the AutoHotkey.ahk text file and insert:

^!i::Run C:\scripts\apply.bat

5. Step Change the path C:\Scripts\apply.bat to the location of your own bat file that we created in step 2.
^ = CTRL
! = ALT
i = i

You can now use the key combo CTRL + ALT + I to change your Windows 7 theme to the specified theme in the bat file.

6. Step Simply modify the script using the AutoHotkey syntax if you don’t like the current key combo. Shift is a plus sign, but you can use all other keys as well.

Applying the Windows 7 themes with a single key combo is a nice option if you have multiple favorite themes that you regularly use. Once you get bored of a theme you can quickly change to another without opening up the Personalization Control Panel.

Do you have any other cool ideas for AutoHotkey scripts that involve Windows 7 themes? If so send them to us via mail win7themes at googlemail dot com – we’ll reward the best tips.

Published: Thursday, December 1st, 2011 Last Modified: December 1, 2011