I usually select "adjust for best performance" in control panel to speed things up. The other day I had to run PCMark06 and it told me to select "adjust for best appearance" in order to run the test properly, so I did that. To my surprise, when I select it, and click apply, nothing happens. Windows still look exactly the same, I get none of XP's visual effects.
Now I am not particularly interested in XP's eyecandy, but I am kind of concerned about what's going on with my computer. Is this a virus or video card issue or windows issue?
When you select either of the two other than Classic, you should see a preview of the desktop that will indicate whether or not all the display features are enabled. If it shows a green Start button, then you know that you have the correct theme selected. If it shows a Start button similar to Win 9x / 2000, then the Classic theme is still enabled.
You may also have to go to the Appearance tab and make sure that Windows Classic style isn't selected under Windows and buttons.