Restarting Aero

I have a desktop computer running Windows 7 Ultimate with Aero enabled, and a netbook running Windows 7 Starter without Aero. So when I use my netbook to connect to my desktop over Remote Desktop, the desktop has to switch from Aero to Classic mode. And when I log back in to the console session on my desktop, Windows is supposed to switch back from Classic to Aero.

Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Just the other day I was in bed and decided to use the netbook to connect to my desktop so I could go through some RSS feeds and tweets in Outlook. But, after I disconnected, the desktop remained in Classic mode… which is just ugly. I knew from previous occurrences that I could just reboot the computer, but I had a lot of stuff open and didn’t want to do that. So I tried shutting down and restarting Explorer (the shell, not the web browser), but that didn’t help. I had a flash of inspiration and tried restarting Desktop Window Manager session service… and it worked!

If this happens to you, all you need to do to fix it is open a command-prompt with admin privileges and type the following (be sure to wait for the “service stopped successfully” message before entering the second command):

net stop uxsms
net start uxsms

If you know of a more elegant way to fix this, please let me know!

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