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My problem is when I set XWinWrap to play a video for my desktop in the startup applications, when I first log in it covers the taskbar as well, the launcher is inaccessible as well. I can use super key to start a program and all is well after that, but I am wondering if there is a way to set XWinWrap to where it does not do this at all.

This page that contains information about how to use XWinWrap.

Command line that I use in startup applications:

xwinwrap -ni -o 0.6 -fs -s -st -sp -b -nf -- mplayer -wid WID -nosound /path/to/video/file.mp4

or even if you just have another method to play videos as your desktop background that works more efficiently than this one, I am not stuck on absolutely having to use this particular method, so long as the end result is the same.

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Also using Ubuntu 12.04 I use XWinWrap with the geometry (-g) option to maximize the screen other wise I've found I lose my taskbar icons as well. These are the options I use for the Electric sheep screensaver.

xwinwrap -ni -o 0.4 -s -st -sp -b -nf -g 1440x900 -- /usr/bin/electricsheep -window-id WID

You can try removing the -fs option and adding in -g for your display resolution.

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