This Windows user manages to make Windows 11 look like 7 without paying a single buck

All using FOSS programs.

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Key notes

  • There are lots of reasons why Windows users want to make Windows 11 look like 7.
  • This Redditor, however, managed to do so without paying a single buck using free tools and programs.
  • This customization for Windows 11 still proves to be lightweight.

There are lots of reasons why Windows users want to make Windows 11 look like 7

While it doesn’t necessarily come down to its security features, as Windows 11 — obviously — is more secure than Windows 7, some users prefer the latter because of its sleek Windows Aero design that was prevalent back in Windows 7 and Vista days.

This Redditor managed to skin their Windows 11 desktop to look like Windows 7 without paying a single buck, all using open-sourced and free software. Utilizing free tools like Explorer Patcher, Open-Shell, Windhawk, and more, they meticulously recreated the classic Aero theme and interface.

And it looks pretty neat, too. It has the whole shebangs: the iconic Aero title bar and design language, old logos of Google Chrome and Windows Media Center, and the old Control Panel and File Explorer. Take a look at this:

This customization for Windows 11 still proves to be lightweight, with minimal impact on CPU usage and overall performance. Plus, it’s entirely free!

Other than this, there are some paid solutions in the market to make your Windows 11 look like Windows 7. 

You can use third-party tools like StartAllBack, but you still need to pay at least $4.99 for a license for one PC. Another tool, WindowsBlinds 11, is also paid: $29.99 for multi-device or $39.99 for Object Desktop.

StartAllBack, a Windows customization tool, however, has a history of causing issues for users, with a notable incident following the Moment 2 update in 2023.