multiple screensaver randomized at a time interval

Anyone who worked with linux might be more familiar with XScreensaver. It was only late when I got myself familiar with it. But I was also quite annoyed that I didn’t had this possibility of using multiple screensaver that changes at a fixed time interval, say every 1 minute, alone on the first call of the screensaver by a Windows operating system. I think there is the possibility for a software to change the default screensaver to another random screensaver, but what I wanted was XScreensaver style in windows. I wanted one call of screensaver uninterrupted by the user input to change to another screensaver while the computer is still idle after a specific time interval.. and I wanted randomness as well. I searched high and low and found ScreenMonkey from the WWW. I think it has some .NET dependencies. In any case, I was a bit annoyed that I had to pay for it in order to get rid of the monkey between screensavers. It didn’t bother me that much, but I was still challenged to solve the problem on my own by making my own multiple screensaver randomizer.

After a little work I created multiscr for Windows. I’m sure it is a bit buggy and might not fit to everybody’s liking. After all, I did it only to please myself and not for other peoples consumption. Nevertheless, I’d like to share this, in case someone is interested in using it: Click here to download. A few words of warning though:

  • The screensaver does not use Windows Registry to save user’s choice of screensaver. It saves everything in the %SYSTEMROOT% directory (usually in Windows/System32). So this directory should be writable to the program.
  • Time interval to switch between screensavers should not be less than 10 seconds
  • The program hooks to mouse and keyboard event to stop screensaver when the user makes a mouse or keyboard input (I’m doing everything manually instead of linking directly to Scrnsaver.lib which I personally find quite restrictive. This seems to work quite fine.)
  • The program simulates a mouse (1 pixel movement) event to force the stop of the chosen screensaver to switch to another random screensaver after the given time interval.

I can release the code for free access upon request. At the moment I am not doing so because I need to make the extra work of making the code “better readable”, removing/customizing some of my unnecessary internal codes (which isn’t necessary to share for this program), put in a visual studio project file for ease of compiling and putting some kind of text about license or sharing. At the moment, I’m just too lazy esp. if not a lot of people are interested in the code anyway. Send me a line if you are interested.

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