How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Bob Cook Your Own Question

Bob Cook
Bob Cook, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 618
Experience:  I have sold Macintosh Computers since 1984. I started Sun Remarketing in 1983 and sold over 25,000.
16295453
Type Your Mac Question Here...
Bob Cook is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

When I change the desktop color it only changes a small square

Customer Question

When I change the desktop color it only changes a small square in the middle of the screen. What is going on?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Shawn replied 5 years ago.
Hello,

I'll be glad to try and help you. My first guess is that a setting needs to be changed in your preferences to make the color fill the screen. I'd like you to:

1) Go to Apple Menu -> System Preferences and click on Desktop & Screen Saver
2) There should be a drop-down box that has the options: "Fit to Screen", "Fill Screen", "Stretch to Fill Screen", "Center", "Tile". Set this option to "Fill Screen"
3) Close the system preferences.


Let me know if that fixes the problem. Kind regards,

Shawn
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
My system is 10.3.9. I don't have an options button on the desktop preferences panel and the options for the screen saver has an options button that modifies the selected screen saver. Might it be another system preference?
Expert:  Shawn replied 5 years ago.
Hello,

Okay. Are you trying to put a solid color on the screen, or is it a picture or pattern of some sort?


Kind regards,

Shawn
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Yes, I am trying to use a solid color. I tried pictures and the other desktop patterns and they all fill the desktop. I guess the answer could be just don't use the solid color option, but I have seen this happen to maybe 6 or 7 computers in the 14 years of having a mac lab classroom and I was just curious as to what causes this to occur.
Expert:  Shawn replied 5 years ago.
Hello,

Ok. I never saw that problem when I used 10.3 and don't have a computer with it installed anymore, so I'm not sure why that's occurring. I'm going to opt out so that another expert can help you.


Kind regards,

Shawn
Expert:  Bob Cook replied 5 years ago.
There are two ways to handle this problem.

1. Export your photos. to Graphic Converter, scale them to fit the Desktop, then reimport to iPhoto.

2. Use the background feature from iPhoto and although your pictures change iPhoto takes care of the scaling.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
The small square only happens in solid color mode. We have two computers in the lab now that do this with the desktop. They are emacs with OS 10.3.9. The photos and preset designs all fill the desktop, I was just wondering why this happens. I've seen it before in the macs, but not always.
Expert:  Bob Cook replied 5 years ago.
Apple provides 10 or so solid colors to use as backgrounds in the Desktop system prefs panel, but what if you wanted a different shade? There appears to be no way to pick a solid color other than the 10 provided. Starting with a hint submitted by abrin523 and after some follow-up emails, he and I have figured out a fairly simple way to have a color picker available to create a solid background in any color you'd like to use.

In 10.2, when you use a non-screen-sized image in the Desktop prefs picture well, you'll see a pop-up menu offering choices for what to do with the image: Fill Screen, Stretch to Fill Screen, Center, and Tile. If you select Center, you'll then get a color swatch that, when clicked, displays the standard Apple color selector. Of course, this just gets you a small image in the middle of your screen surrounded by the color you picked ... but if the image you use is a "nothing" image, then you get a desktop covered with the color you chose.

I used Photoshop Elements to create a new 1x1 pixel TIFF image. I then saved it without doing anything to it at all. When I dragged this into the image well, the desktop went white. When I switched to Center mode and chose a color, though, the chosen color covered 100% of the desktop.

You could, of course, do this by creating an image swatch of the color you wish to use and then using "Tile" to fill the screen with it. But you'll have to create a swatch for each color you wish to use. If you use a blank image, though, you can select your own color through the Apple color picker each time your mood changes.
Bob Cook, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 618
Experience: I have sold Macintosh Computers since 1984. I started Sun Remarketing in 1983 and sold over 25,000.
Bob Cook and 5 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Hi John, Thank you for your expertise and, more important, for your kindness because they make me, almost, look forward to my next computer problem. After the next problem comes, I'll be delighted to correspond again with you. I'm told that I excel at programing. But system administration has never been one of my talents. So it's great to have an expert to rely on when the computer decides to stump me. God bless, Bill Bill M. Schenectady, New York
< Last | Next >
  • Hi John, Thank you for your expertise and, more important, for your kindness because they make me, almost, look forward to my next computer problem. After the next problem comes, I'll be delighted to correspond again with you. I'm told that I excel at programing. But system administration has never been one of my talents. So it's great to have an expert to rely on when the computer decides to stump me. God bless, Bill Bill M. Schenectady, New York
  • The Expert answered my Mac question and was patient. He answered in a thorough and timely manner, keeping the response on a level that could understand. Thank you! Frank Canada
  • My Expert answered my question promptly and he resolved the issue totally. This is a great service. I am so glad I found it I will definitely use the service again if needed. One Happy Customer New York
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Mike

    Mac Medic

    Satisfied Customers:

    6256
    Over 20 years IT experience with Apple computers in publishing, marketing and design.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/macthelife/2009-10-20_1899_mikesebaharsquare64.jpg Mike's Avatar

    Mike

    Mac Medic

    Satisfied Customers:

    6256
    Over 20 years IT experience with Apple computers in publishing, marketing and design.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/AS/ashiknasameen/2012-5-15_141836_final2.64x64.jpg Ashik's Avatar

    Ashik

    Mac Helper

    Satisfied Customers:

    5282
    7+ Years of Experience in troubleshooting Macs, iPhone, iPad, iPod etc
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/DP/dpean/2012-6-6_172828_avatorme1.64x64.JPG Daniel's Avatar

    Daniel

    Mac Genius

    Satisfied Customers:

    4670
    Apple certified on desktop and portable, help desk qualified. Have owned and used Macs since 1989.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VI/vinodvmenon2005/1.64x64.jpg Vinod Menon's Avatar

    Vinod Menon

    Support Specialist

    Satisfied Customers:

    2068
    worked as a Tech support Associate for Apple products
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BE/beboo/2011-1-14_201648_n5063313142021801763.64x64.jpg Brandon M.'s Avatar

    Brandon M.

    Mac Support Specialist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1501
    10+ Years Mac Support as contractor and currently an IT Manager for law firm
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MA/MacDruid/IMG_0232.64x64.JPG John T. F.'s Avatar

    John T. F.

    Mac Druid

    Satisfied Customers:

    1408
    20+ years in the computer/Mac industry
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MA/MacHelpdesk/1d2d506.64x64.jpg David's Avatar

    David

    Mac Support Specialist

    Satisfied Customers:

    1236
    BSc, H.Dip, Apple Certified