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Windows skin site re-posts MacOS X desktop theme

Modified WinAqua back after Apple legal threat

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Windows-modification site Skinz.org yesterday re-posted, albeit with minor modifications, software that makes Windows look like Aqua, Apple's upcoming user interface for MacOS X, according to MacWeek.com.

The move follows demands from Apple lawyers earlier this week that the site remove the WinAqua 'skin' or face a world of legal pain. The Mac-maker alleged the skin was an infringement of its copyrights.

WinAqua works with WindowBlinds, a shareware utility from Stardock that replaces Windows' standard user interface menu bars, windows and widgets with alternative designs. WindowBlinds already comes with BeOS and MacOS-esque desktop themes built in. Skinz.org responded to Apple's request by removing WinAqua.

The version re-posted yesterday looks identical to the original version, but lacks Apple's MacOS X logo, which was key element to Apple's objection, site administrator Bryan Beretta told MacWeek. He also claimed that Apple's legal team also sent a "nasty" email threatening to force the site's ISP to shut Skinz.org down, a tactic often used by large corporations to force the closure of small Web sites owned by individuals. Not that Skinz.org is a site owned by an individual - it's the property of one Network Communications - but you get the point.

Despite its removal and subsequent re-appearance, WinAqua has proved remarkably popular, having been downloaded over 16,800 times - much, much more than the second most popular skin, which has achieved just a fraction of that figure. ®

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