By default Windows Server 2008 has a (boring) blue logonscreen background. This tutorial will help you to customize the Windows Server 2008 x86|x64 (Build 6001) loginscreen with Vista’s or your own background. Members of the forum found out that using the authui.dll file from Vista SP0 (Vista without any Service Packs) allows you to modify the logonscreen background and (as far as we tested) doesn’t have side-effects. You can do this either autmatically or manually. You can test if this also works for newer builds of Windows Server 2008, but at your own risk!
After overwriting the authui.dll file(s) you will get the default Vista logon background. To modify this, use the free Vista Visual Master, the commercial Stardock LogonStudio or any other Vista Logon Screen modification tool to edit the background.
Modded Windows 2008 Workstation logonscreen
I extracted the authui.dll files for the x86 and x64 architecture respectively from the x86 and x64 MSDN iso’s of Windows Vista (SP0) RTM. See names of iso images below.
Download: authui.dll_VistaSP0_x86x64.zip (1.91MB) from Rapidshare and run install.cmd. This installer works for both the x86 and x64 architecture.
1. Get the authui.dll file from the C:WindowsSystem32 directory of a clean Windows Vista SP0 pc or extract it from the MSDN iso with name en_windows_vista_x86_dvd_X12-34293.iso.
2. Go to your Windows Server 2008 pc and take ownership and get permissions for the C:WindowsSystem32authui.dll file. To do this follow the instructions in the “Take Ownership/Permissions” article.
3. Rename the authui.dll file and copy the authui.dll file you got from the Vista SP0 pc to the System32 directory.
1. Get the authui.dll file from the C:WindowsSystem32 and C:WindowsSysWOW64 directory of a clean Windows Vista SP0 x64 or extract it from the MSDN iso with name en_windows_vista_x64_dvd_X12-40712.iso.
2. Go to your Windows Server 2008 pc and take ownership and get permissions for the C:WindowsSystem32authui.dll and C:WindowsSysWOW64authui.dll file. To do this follow the instructions in the “Take Ownership/Permissions” article.
3. Rename the authui.dll files and copy the authui.dll files you got from the Vista SP0 x64 pc to respectively the System32 and SysWOW64 directory.