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Get the Windows 8 Release Preview look with the latest Windows 8 UX and Transformation Packs

16 July 2012, Nick Peers

Customization website Windows X Live has released both Windows 8 UX Pack 5.0 and Windows 8 Transformation Pack 5.0. Both tools are designed to provide a Windows 8-like user interface in older versions of Windows.

Headline features for both version 5 builds are new themes and updates designed to ape the user interface found in the recently released Windows 8 Release Preview.

UX Pack 5.0, which is aimed solely at Windows 7 users, provides a skinned theme that apes the Windows 8 interface, including the new Metro theme, which provides a widget-like display optimised for smartphones and tablets for accessing apps and tools.

Get something approaching the Windows 8 look in your current version of Windows.

It also forms part of the Windows 8 Transformation Pack 5.0, which aims to provide a more immersive Windows 8 experience through the installation and automatic customisation of additional freeware tools. In addition to providing extra functionality, W8TP is also compatible with older versions of Windows.

Version 5.0 updates the look and feel to match that of Windows 8 Release Preview, with new and updated themes, redesigned toolbar buttons, mouse cursors and fonts all aiming to closely match the look and feel of Windows 8 Release Preview. It also promises to squash all existing bugs, such as Windows Explorer not appearing when the Start Orb feature is being used, and resolves incompatibilities with Segoe UI font installation from the previous release.

UX Pack 5.0 simply dresses up Windows 7 to look like Windows 8 quickly and without modifying any system files, but if you opt for the more complete experience of the Windows 8 Transformation Pack, it’s strongly recommended you take a backup image of your system drive before you begin using a tool like Macrium Reflect Free, just in case problems occur during the removal process.

Both Windows 8 UX Pack 5.0 (Windows 7 only) and Windows 8 Transformation Pack 5.0 (Windows XP or later) are both freeware downloads. Macrium Reflect Free is free for personal use only.

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