Longhorn

From Windows Wallpaper Wiki

This page is under construction.

Longhorn is the codename for Windows Vista. Originally conceived in mid-2001, its development was reset in mid-2004; it was later given its final name and was released in late 2006. The codename would also be used for Server 2008, even after Vista was released.

This page lists pre-release wallpapers from both before and after Longhorn was renamed, for the sake of convenience, but does not list wallpapers that are still present in the final release except when there are differences such as saturation or cropping. Note that this wiki will refer to Longhorn as the codename alone rather than "Windows Longhorn", due to that phrasing not being used by Microsoft.

Wallpapers

Windows XP's wallpaper set appears in every Longhorn build until 5355; these are not listed here.

Pre-reset

During late 2002 and early-mid 2003 the default wallpapers were auroras created by Microsoft's own designers, including Robert Stein. From late 2003 onward they would license rights managed images from Getty Images. All of these wallpapers share the same filename, Bliss.bmp, however this wiki refers to them just as default wallpapers to avoid confusion. Jenny Lam was involved in the wallpaper selection process, like with post-reset Longhorn/Vista. The other wallpapers remained the same as XP's throughout this phase of Longhorn's development.

Build range Original filename Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
Builds 3663-3670 (unconfirmed) samples unknown unknown Charlie Waite
Jenny Lam (likely added the branding)
Due to its low quality and it being early in development, it is likely this photo was merely taken from the internet, while the saturation was boosted
Build 3683 unknown
Builds 3706-4001 unknown N/A Microsoft unknown
Builds 4002-4011 unknown N/A Microsoft unknown
Builds 4015-4031 (main) unknown N/A Microsoft unknown
Builds 4029 (Lab06_n)-4042 (main) unknown N/A Microsoft unknown
Build 4039 (unused) unknown N/A Microsoft unknown Located in %WINDIR%\i386\
Builds 4042 (Lab06_n)-4067 (idx01) unknown Getty Images Getty Images Tom Bean
Build 4050 (private/Lab06, October 22 compile) unknown N/A Microsoft unknown A cropped version of a Longhorn Los Angeles Convention Center wallpaper
Build 4067 (private/lddm dev tech(davidmo).040212-1646) to 4082 unknown Getty Images Getty Images Adam Smith
Builds 406?, 4083-4093 treeA_cropped Getty Images The Image Bank Andre Gallant

Demos

As a result of Longhorn's ambitiousness, Microsoft produced a large amount of Macromedia Director demos to demonstrate the many ideas the company had for Longhorn. Each of these have their own unique wallpapers, with a few of them being recycled from previous versions of Windows such as Windows 2000 and XP, along with Microsoft Plus! 98.

This list is incomplete, as there are demos that have not yet saw the light of the day, plus many wallpapers are covered by UI elements making them very difficult to reverse search. In some cases, the files within the demos have the UI elements already included on them. Also, please note that some of these wallpapers may not even be official at all. In some cases, there is no way to know for sure; however they will be listed here until proven they are fake.

Name Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
Aero UE Wallpaper 17 N/A Microsoft unknown May not be official, as it has not been found in any leaked demos; despite the metadata crediting a "Hillel C.", Hillel Cooperman has confirmed that he never owned the camera it was taken with
Forest of Redwood Trees Corbis Corbis Mark Karrass May not be official; while it is a stock photo, it has not been found in any leaked demos
E2E_PHOTOS_wallpaper Corbis Corbis Robert Marien Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
EXTENSIBILITY_wallpaper Corbis Corbis George D. Lepp Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
Reused from Windows 2000
Green grass, close-up Getty Images Getty Images Andrea Sperling Used in a PDC 2003 Longhorn AERO presentation demo
A dark blue version also appears in the Healthcare demo from 2003
Highway Getty Images PhotoDisc Glen Allison Used in the SuperFetch demo at PDC 2005; may also have been used earlier
Also used in an MSN Explorer demo that was falsely labelled as a Blackcomb/Longhorn demo
Longhorn blue grass wallpaper unknown unknown unknown Used in the healthcare demo from 2003
File:Longhorn leaves wallpaper.jpg Longhorn leaves wallpaper unknown unknown unknown Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
Longhorn Los Angeles Convention Center wallpaper N/A Microsoft unknown A cropped version of this appears in build 4050 (private/Lab06, October 22 compile)
Longhorn Los Angeles Convention Center wallpaper 2 N/A Microsoft unknown
Longhorn Stonehenge wallpaper unknown unknown unknown Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
File:Longhorn trees wallpaper.jpg Longhorn trees wallpaper unknown unknown unknown Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
NAVIGATION_wallpaper unknown unknown unknown Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
Ocean Wave unknown unknown unknown Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
Reused from Windows 2000
Plus! Nature Getty Images The Image Bank unknown Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
Reused from Microsoft Plus! for Windows XP
Searching - V2 Terragen Terragen Martin Schulte Used in a PDC 2003 Longhorn AERO presentation demo
STORAGE_wallpaper unknown Science Source Adam Jones Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002, albeit flipped horizontally
TREE AT THE FOUR SEASONS IN WINTER Getty Images The Image Bank Andre Gallant Used in a demo circa 2004
Twilight at Lake Powell, Arizona Getty Images PhotoDisc John Wang Used in a PDC 2003 Longhorn AERO presentation demo, albeit zoomed in and flipped horizontally
View to Ben Lomond Getty Images PhotoDisc Colin Paterson May not be official; while it is a stock photo, it has not been found in any leaked demos
Winter Corbis Corbis Mark Karrass Used in a Longhorn Days demo circa 2002
Reused from Windows XP
WO_SCN07 Corbis Corbis David Muench Used in the Excalibur demo circa 2003
Reused from Microsoft Plus! 98 albeit without the copyright text

Post-reset

Please note that this article also includes wallpapers that were added after Longhorn was renamed to Vista.

Builds 5001 to 5231

During this point in development, all of the wallpapers were identical to XP's except the default wallpapers and later the branding wallpaper. Starting from build 5048, the default wallpapers were all titled Longhorn, although this wiki will refer to them as just being the default wallpapers rather than calling all of them Longhorn.

Build range Original filename Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
Build 5001 unknown unknown (bull photo)
Corbis (original image)
Microsoft
unknown (bull photo)
Westlight (original image)
unknown (designer and bull photo)
Charles O'Rear (original image)
The bull photo was likely taken off the internet; it does not appear to be a stock photo.
Build 5048 200151237-001 Getty Images Getty Images Martin Barraud
Builds 5059-5231 unknown N/A Microsoft Jenny Lam(?) In a few earlier unleaked builds, this wallpaper appears with branding
Builds 5059-5231 (branding wallpaper) unknown N/A Microsoft unknown

Builds 5252 to 5342

By build 5252 a handful of new wallpapers were added, although XP's wallpapers are still present. Build 5342 additionally added five folders consisting of 36 placeholder wallpapers, with two of those remaining in later builds.

Name Original filename Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
GreenPla Green Plant N/A Microsoft Claudia Default wallpaper of builds 5259 to 5308 and 5342, although likely due to a bug
Longhorn Nature Vistas Getty Images Tony Stone Images Art Wolfe Default wallpaper of builds 5310 to 5337
Later appears in builds 5355 to 5840.16384 as img24 (later img37) at a higher resolution, and in widescreen as img34
SeasideV Seaside Vista N/A Microsoft Claudia
TigerLea leaf1 unknown unknown unknown
Tropical Tropical Vista
DSC_0344
N/A Microsoft Claudia
Underwater Underwater Vista
DSC_0270
N/A Microsoft Claudia
WindowsA Windows Angle unknown unknown Douglas Evans

Builds 5355 to 5840.16384

By build 5355, most of the previous wallpapers were removed and replaced with an entirely new set of 1600x1200 wallpapers, with the widescreens ones being at 1600x900, oddly at 16:9 despite 16:10 being more common back then. However, the mountain lake wallpaper would stay, albeit at a higher resolution and slightly more cropped, along with two of the placeholder wallpapers. This set would be slightly updated in build 5469, where the default wallpaper is changed to the wallpaper that is img22 in the final release; the previous wallpaper was reallocated to img37.

Name Original filename Category Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
img1 10197687 Black and White Getty Images The Image Bank Peter de Lory
img2 200171069-001 Black and White Getty Images Getty Images Nicholas Veasey
img3 ca2447-002 Black and White Getty Images Tony Stone Images Jean-Francois Gate
img4 ca21717 Black and White Getty Images Getty Images Alan Kearney
img5 MSwanson - Wide - Flower 02 Black and White N/A Microsoft Mike Swanson Made greyscale
Removed in build 5840.16389
img6 17517595_ea95bf889f_o Black and White N/A Microsoft Hillel Cooperman Removed in build 5840.16389
img7 img13 Textures N/A Microsoft Robert Stein Removed in build 5840.16389
img8 UL782453 Textures Corbis Corbis Darrell Gulin Reallocated to img7 in build 5840.16389
img9 MSwanson - Wide - Leaf 02 Textures N/A Microsoft Mike Swanson Reallocated to img8 in build 5840.16389
img10 unknown Textures Getty Images The Image Bank Chuck Kuhn Reallocated to img9 in build 5840.16389
img11 427930-001 Textures Getty Images Tony Stone Images Rosemary Calvert Reallocated to img10 in build 5840.16389
img12 200146243-001 Textures Getty Images Getty Images Dana Menussi Reallocated to img11 in build 5840.16389
img13 unknown Paintings N/A Microsoft unknown Reused from build 5342. Oddly, it was reallocated from img19 to img13.

Removed in build 5840.16389

img14 SundayAfternoon.Suerat Paintings Corbis Bettman unknown (credited on Corbis to Bettman)
Georges Seurat (painting)
Reallocated to img12 in build 5840.16389
img15 unknown Paintings N/A Microsoft unknown Reused from build 5342

Removed in build 5840.16389

img16 Bridge.MIverson Paintings Corbis Corbis Mary Iverson Reallocated to img13 in build 5840.16389
img17 Iris.VGogh Paintings Corbis J. Paul Getty Trust/Sygma unknown (credited on Corbis to J. Paul Getty Trust)

Vincent van Gogh (painting)

Reallocated to img14 in build 5840.16389
img18 Fish Paintings Corbis Corbis Christie's Images Reallocated to img15 in build 5840.16389

Original painting by Utagawa Hiroshige (born Ando Hiroshige), calligraphy text right above fish removed

img19 ca22824 Vistas Getty Images Getty Images Walter Bibikow Reallocated to img16 in build 5840.16389
img20 70010299 Vistas Getty Images Getty Images Jack Dykinga Removed in build 5840.16389
img21 10115595 Vistas Getty Images The Image Bank Dr. Robert Muntefering Reallocated to img17 in build 5840.16389
img22 880228-001 Vistas Getty Images Tony Stone Images Mark Lewis Reallocated to img19 in build 5840.16389
img23 Vista06_Field1_SB Vistas N/A commissioned by Microsoft Michael Haber Reallocated to img20 in build 5840.16389
img24 (builds 5355 to 5466)
img37 (builds 5469 to 5840.16384)
ap3445-013 Vistas Getty Images Tony Stone Images Art Wolfe Default wallpaper of builds 5355 to 5466; removed in build 5840.16389
img24 SteveFu_2 Vistas N/A Microsoft Steve Fu Default wallpaper of builds 5469 to 5840.16384

Reallocated to img22 in build 5840.16389

img25 MSwanson - Flower 03 Light Auras N/A Microsoft Mike Swanson Removed in build 5840.16389

Later used as a background for the "glass" slideshow theme in Windows Photo Gallery, and the associated screensaver.

img26 img26 Light Auras N/A Microsoft Robert Stein Reallocated to img27 in build 5840.16389
img27 DSCN0315 Light Auras N/A Microsoft Robert Stein Removed in build 5840.16389
img28 IMG_6010 Light Auras N/A Microsoft unknown Removed in build 5840.16389
img29 img28 Light Auras N/A Microsoft Robert Stein Removed in build 5840.16389
img30 img30 Light Auras N/A Microsoft unknown Removed in build 5840.16389
img31 427930-001_WS Widescreen Getty Images Tony Stone Images Rosemary Calvert Widescreen version of img11; reallocated to img30 in build 5840.16389
img32 880228-001_WS Widescreen Getty Images Tony Stone Images Mark Lewis Widescreen version of img22; reallocated to img34 in build 5840.16389
img33 10115595_WS Widescreen Getty Images The Image Bank Dr. Robert Muntefering Widescreen version of img21; removed in build 5840.16389
img34 ap3445-013_WS Widescreen Getty Images Tony Stone Images Art Wolfe Widescreen version of img24/img37; removed in build 5840.16389
img35 MSX_DSCN0215 Widescreen N/A Microsoft Robert Stein Widescreen version of img7; removed in build 5840.16389
img36 Vista06_Field1_SB_WS Widescreen N/A commissioned by Microsoft Michael Haber Widescreen version of img23; removed in build 5840.16389
Starter

When the Starter SKU was first added, it featured the same wallpaper set as other editions (in turn being the same wallpapers used in most versions of XP), but with the addition of the three wallpapers from the Indian version of Windows XP Starter Edition, with Dunagiri being set as the default wallpaper. By build 5355(?) the set of wallpapers that appear in the final release were added, although this set was slightly updated by build 5477. This resulted in a handful being upgraded to widescreen 1600x1024, while img746 was changed from the CMYK color model to RGB.

Note that the table below only shows wallpapers that feature differences from the final ones.

Name Original filename Category Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
img732 Iceberg Nature Getty Images National Geographic Eastcott Momatiuk Replaced with a widescreen version by build 5477
img733 Island sunset Vistas Getty Images Getty Images Kevin Forest Replaced with a widescreen version by build 5477
img735 Leaning palms Nature Getty Images Getty Images unknown (credited on Getty to Shoot PTY) Replaced with a widescreen version by build 5477
img743 Sawtooth Mountains Vistas Getty Images altrendo unknown (credited on Getty to altrendo nature) Replaced with a widescreen version by build 5477
img746 Two giraffes Nature Getty Images Digital Vision Karl Ammann Color model changed to RGB by build 5477

Build 5840.16389 onwards

Build 5840.16389 replaced the wallpaper set with the one that appears in the RTM release, which includes new ones such as Hamad Darwish's two wallpapers, while removing a handful of others, including the Beta 2 default wallpaper and replacing most of the Light Auras with designed ones as opposed to abstract macro photography. Additionally, the resolutions of the remaining 4:3 and widescreen wallpapers are now in 1920x1440 and 1920x1200 respectively.

Sample pictures

All builds of Longhorn/Vista prior to build 5310 feature the same sample pictures as XP. Said build adds a set of 15 new sample pictures; the XP ones are also installed as the package for them is still included, although it was removed by build 5329. Creek and Garden were replaced with completely different images by build 5337. By build 5477, Microsoft made slight alterations to the sample pictures such as adjusting the saturation, although some of these could be due to color model changes. Descriptions, ratings and tags were also added.

Name Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist Notes
Autumn Leaves Getty Images Iconica Peter Miller "leaves" is capitalized from build 5435 onwards
Creek (builds 5310 to 5329) Getty Images Look-foto Konrad Wothe Replaced with a different image in build 5337 onwards
Creek (build 5337 onwards) Getty Images altrendo unknown (credited on Getty to altrendo nature)
Desert Landscape SuperStock Purestock Elizabeth Carmel Made brighter in build 5477 onwards
Dock Getty Images Getty Images Angelo Cavalli
Forest Flowers Getty Images Lonely Planet Gareth Mccormack "flowers" is capitalized from build 5435 onwards
Made brighter in build 5477 onwards
Forest Getty Images Getty Images Darrell Gulin
Garden (builds 5310 to 5329) Getty Images Getty Images Peter Gridley Replaced with a different image in build 5337 onwards
Garden (build 5337 onwards) Getty Images Digital Vision Natphotos Made more saturated in build 5477 onwards
Green Sea Turtle Getty Images Getty Images Jeff Hunter "sea turtle" is capitalized from build 5435 onwards
Hibiscus Flowers (builds 5310 to 5472)
Frangipani Flowers (build 5477 onwards)
Getty Images Getty Images Kevin Forest "flowers" is capitalized from build 5435 onwards
Humpback Whale (builds 5310 to 5329; 5477 onwards)
Hump back Whale (builds 5435 to 5472)
Getty Images Digital Vision Tom Brakefield Made more saturated in build 5477 onwards
Oryx Antelope Getty Images Digital Vision Natphotos Made brighter in build 5477 onwards
Toco Toucan (builds 5310 to 5329; 5477 onwards)
Toco Tucan (builds 5435 to 5472)
Getty Images Getty Images Kevin Schafer Made brighter in build 5477 onwards
Tree Getty Images Getty Images Jeremy Walker
Waterfall Getty Images Iconica Frans Lemmens
Winter Leaves Getty Images Getty Images Peter Lilja "leaves" is capitalized from build 5435 onwards
Made brighter in build 5477 onwards

User account pictures

Demos

todo: add table

A few unique user account pictures can be seen in demos from the pre-reset development phase of Longhorn.

Builds 40xx to 5342

todo: add guest/default pictures

Prior to build 5355, all builds of Longhorn use the same set of user account pictures as XP, although they added new guest and default user account pictures.

Builds 5355 to 5378

By build 5355, a new set of user account pictures was introduced, which was mostly complete but had three placeholder pictures. The previous guest user account picture was carried over, so it is not listed here. The rest are the same as the final set so they are also not listed here.

Name Licensed from Originates from Photographer/artist
user unknown unknown (Microsoft?) unknown
usertile1 N/A Microsoft unknown
usertile2 N/A Microsoft unknown

Build 5381 onwards

Build 5381 introduced a near final set of user account pictures, replacing both user and usertile1 with an identical gerbera picture and usertile2 with a robot picture. This set was slightly updated by build 5487, with the guest user account picture being replaced with a new picture and usertile1 being removed, as it is merely a duplicate of user.

Logon backgrounds

Pre-reset

Image Build range Notes
Builds 4015 to 4020 Same as Longhorn builds 3706-4001 default desktop wallpaper albeit being zoomed in top-right
Builds 4029 to 4042 Same as the default desktop wallpaper albeit without a logo
Build 4042 (Lab06 n) A 16x1024 gradient graphic stretched to the resolution of the display

The logon background of builds 4048 to 4093 is solid black; this was also the case with post-reset build 5048.

Post-reset

The logon background in very early post-reset builds is the same as of XP's, comprised of multiple elements. Build 5048, like later pre-reset builds, uses black for its logon background (Windows 2000-style logon screen is enabled by default; the Windows XP logon screen can be enabled in the Control Panel), while builds 5098 to 5259 use a blue-black gradient background (rendered in real-time) with a transparent Windows logo graphic in the top-left corner. Build 5270 introduces a new aurora background; by build 5355, this is replaced with a slightly updated version in multiple resolutions. By build 5487, the logon background has been changed to the one that appears in the final release.

Image Build range Notes
Builds 5098 to 5259 Not a static image; comprised of a transparent Windows logo with a gradient background
Builds 5270 to 5342
Builds 5355 to 5477 Appears in multiple resolutions

Setup backgrounds

Image Build range Notes
Build 4001 A darker blue version of the default desktop wallpaper
Alternative version of the default desktop wallpaper, cropped and flipped vertically with added branding
Builds 4005 to 4042 A darker blue version of the default desktop wallpaper
Builds 4048(?) to 4093; 5048
Builds 5098 to 5231 Same as the logon background, although it is static
Used in the initial setup window

OOBE background

TODO: further research

Most Longhorn builds used either the Windows XP background or their respective Setup background, except for builds 5270 to 5456, which used the full version of the background used in the RTM's Preinstallation Environment.