XP Enchulado

Here is a brief but practical step-by-step turorial on how to improve Windows XP interface to look and function like (and even better) than Windows Vista one. I am very happy with the result of aplying all these programs.
  1. Install SP3 UXTheme Patcher; this will enable you to apply third party visual styles like the following;
  2. Download Vista Live pack for Windows XP blue version and apply the Visual Style by clicking on the VistaLive Blue.mysstyles file; ViStart (mentioned below) comes in grey, but I like this color combination. Anyway, I guess you can change the color of ViStart, or you can downoad this Live pack in grey.
  3. Install ViStart. Configuration is accessed from the shutdown menu, next to the lock button.
  4. Install QTAddressBar and you will have breadcrumbs in you address bar, but better than Vista.
  5. Install QTTabBar, apply some skin available from the site (the tabas will look much better). I recommend to install the Folder Tree Button and View Mode Button plugins and set the ButtonBar to display small icons. Warning: if you hide the TabBar and leave the ButtonBar open, this will display no buttons when you open Explorer; this is a bug and so far can only be avoided by displaying both bars. Tip: the language files included in the plugins are useless, just ignore them.
  6. Download archives with Vista cursors and sounds from here. Paste the sounds in Windows/media and the cursors you know where ;-)

You just have to take a while to check all their cool customization options, you won't want to return to your original XP :)