Visual Studio 2012 Color Theme Editor

Microsoft Free

Allows users to create and edit Visual Studio themes. Themes can customize colors used for menus, toolbars, tabs, titlebars, the text editor, and other environment colors.

Microsoft
(228) Review
Visual Studio
2012
Download (539,070)
9/21/2013
2.3
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Reviews (228)
Q and A (103)
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by Polish Ninja | December 27 2012

This is awesome! Good job.

by Giulio Vian | December 27 2012

by Yann Duran | December 22 2012

Matt, this is fantastic work! Such a pity MS didn't get you to do this at the beginning, instead of trying to force the new light/dark themes on everyone, whether they wanted the change or not. The light/dark themes would have been so much better received if they had been a choice, not rammed down our throats.

But the problem is, I only found the 2.1 version by accident (but a very pleasant one it was), then again, I only found the updated 2.2 version by accident as well. So much frustration could have been saved for a lot of people, if they knew only about your extension.

One odd thing though, VS didn't flag the new version as an available update, even though I had the original one installed already.

I love the sound of the things that you're "thinking about" doing. Can't wait to see what you come up with.

Thank you!

by ssc0 | December 17 2012

Most useful extension for VS2012.

by Albert Bori | December 15 2012

Biggest disappointment with VS 2012 was them ramming metro down our throats... especially the atrocity that is their default styling of VS 2012. This editor lets me change the environment to look in such a way that doesn't give me a headache within a few minutes. Added bonus: They attempted to match their last VS color scheme as one of the default templates.

Nice recovery, Microsoft.

by ------------------------ | December 13 2012

Pretty simple to create an Office 2013 like color theme with this. Anyone hosting up a site where people can upload their creations? :)

by Melsis | December 13 2012

Colorless icons remain the same. Let's face it Microsoft. We are not happy with new User Interface. We want to see UI of VS2010. Gray colored icons very bad choice for our eyes. Children can make this icons better than MS.
Metro theme is very bad for new generation PCs. Everything is gray. It seems 80's old PCs. Why do we use color monitor? Why do we use new generation graphic cards? Is it for Metro theme or gray screen?

by ericfaust | December 13 2012

Helps make VS 2012 look descent.

by Chris Declat | December 12 2012

Finally light in the dark.

by Jason Skowronek | December 07 2012

Couldn't have installed this soon enough. Dark and light themes, really? Sometimes is just doesn't make sense to deviate too far from what is already working, right MSFT.

by SideByEach | December 06 2012

Nicely done!

Question for the MS team members:

Why did they, or management, decide to make Visual Studio 2012 look like a Java freeware application? The washed out, monochrome color scheme is a huge step backwards for the product. Heads should roll.

by TAlf | December 05 2012

Thank You!!

by Mean Oge | December 03 2012

Awesome, VS is useable now!

by Aryaei | November 30 2012

cool...hope it get some more themes too...if i had some times i like work on new colors

by JMB1502 | November 28 2012

I this working for the Express Edition ? I have not been able to install it on VS express.

by Cetoken | November 27 2012

I'd give it a real rating if it would work with Test Professional. What, testers don't deserve a readable UI?

by Juan Fco. Miranda | November 25 2012

It's a great extension, but with the blue theme there are some buttons and/or tabs that are not visible until the mouse pointer is over it, like the new windows phone 8 manifest app.

by Đonny | November 20 2012

Great extension. Makes Visual Studio 2012 much better to use! Microsoft should rather deploy VS2012 with blue theme then force users to wait and download extension.

by Mario185 | November 19 2012

VS 2012 is better with colors :)

by zinzinzibidi | November 16 2012

great!

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  • method explanation colors
    1 Posts | Last post April 01, 2014
    • hi,
      I am using "light with dark editor" theme and i have a problem with the explanation area. I don't know the exact name of it, so I will explain: when I write an object name and press the dot, intellisense brings the usable properties and methods. And while I am moving on the methods with the arrow keys, an expalantion bubble pops that has information about the method or property. I want to change the colors of this bubble's text because I cannot see it with the current settings.
      Can you help me about this problem please?
      Thanks.
  • Dynamic Changing of Color Scheme
    1 Posts | Last post March 28, 2014
    • Hello Matthew,
      
      Is there anyway to change the default color settings of the Fonts inside Tools/Options/FontsAndColors dynamically through code? I've figured out how to catch the Theme change event and I would like to switch my color scheme to predefined values after a theme switch, but I can't figure out how to access the color values through code. Would I have to somehow rewrite the registry values or is there an easier way to do this?
  • Document tab colours
    1 Posts | Last post November 12, 2013
    • Hi. On my copy of VS2012 the colour of the document tabs seems to be fixed: aspx forms and code behind get a rather nasty brick red, .cs classes a sort of British Racing Green. The document with the focus doesn't really stand out, particularly for green tabs and it sometimes takes me a while to realise I'm not on the tab I thought I was. This doesn't seem to be under the control of the theme editor - is there any way to change it?
  • Support for non-Professional versions?
    1 Posts | Last post November 07, 2013
    • I'm using VS 2012 as a component of Sql Server Data Tools. As such this is the "integrated" version, not "Professional. As a result I apparently can't install this extension, which is a bummer, because I can't stand the look of VS 2012!!!!
      
      Is there w reason why you can't support other versions?
  • Color Theme for Each VS Instance
    1 Posts | Last post October 24, 2013
    • Hi,
      The Color Theme Editor for VS 2010 let me set a color theme for each instance of VS while it was running.   That is, after I started an instance of VS 2010 I could select a Theme.  Then I could start a second instance of VS 2010 and set its Theme to a different color.  This made it easy to identify which instance I was working with.
      
      In VS 2012, if I have two instances running and change the color of one instance it also changes the color of the second instance.
      
      Is there any way to include the logic from the 2010 version.  It was very useful.
      
      Thanks.
      
      Kim
  • Broken VS
    1 Posts | Last post October 24, 2013
    • Hello,
      I installed the plugin while having my custom colors. I noticed that it changed some of the colors here and there and I tried to import them back from settings file. I realized that the studio has stopped importing colors and fonts. I uninstalled the plugin but this didn't fix the problem. So now I have a spoiled color theme and broken import settings feature. Also on every change of theme the font is reset to some strange font and I have to go change it manually from the options. All this is happening on VS 2012 Professional.
      Can you suggest any fix other than uninstall and install of VS?
      Thanks
      Andrey
  • Pick-up Windows Color option?
    2 Posts | Last post October 17, 2013
    • Hi I have setup my windows colours so that I don't feel like I'm staring at the sun all day with the glaring white paper that is Visual studios default.
      
      However I cannot see (no pun intended) how to change VS2012 workspace background colours to my windows colour.
      
      It would be good if there was an option to Pick-up the windows (theme) colour either entirely or per item.
      
      Until I can change the paper colour I'll have to give VS2012 a miss or ask my lawyer about what come back on MS there would be for consequential damage from using the UI (joke).
      
      Please help us that customise windows colours for Usability reasons!!!!
    • I can think of two options:
      1. Use a High Contrast windows theme, and customize those colors.  In this case, Visual Studio will use only Windows theme colors.
      2. Customize Visual Studio colors using this extension to be what you want (perhaps starting from the Dark theme is closer to what you want).
      
      The big problem with "using Windows colors" is that Windows exposes a very, very small set of colors, but Visual Studio is a complex application that requires more nuanced color choices.  This extension currently gives you maximum control over that nuance.
  • SSIS designer background colors
    2 Posts | Last post October 15, 2013
    • What element in the Theme Editor determines the background color when working with SSIS packages?  Specifically the Control Flow and Data Flow pages.  I copied the Dark installed theme and wanted to tweak a few colors, but leave the background like it was in the installed theme.  However it changes the background color to an off-white color after copying the installed theme.
    • I'm not familiar with SSIS packages, but based on the description of the problem, my guess is that its UI has handled theming incorrectly in some way (perhaps their "Dark" colors are tied specifically to that theme's ID rather than defining colors that can be redefined for any theme).
  • Feature request: colour preview?
    3 Posts | Last post October 01, 2013
    • The standard "fonts and colors" dialog in VS has a preview box that shows a sample line of code in the selected colour. This is helpful for visualising the colour in context and is the only thing I miss from this extension.
      
      Any chance of implementing that, either in this or the 2013 version? Thanks.
    • That would be a great feature--I will add that to my list.  For the colors that come from Fonts & Colors, it should be straightforward to show the same type of preview.  For colors that are outside the editor, there's not currently metadata about what type of text to draw on that color in all cases, so that may be trickier to implement.
    • Awesome, thanks for listening :-) 
  • Compatible with 2013???
    3 Posts | Last post September 23, 2013
    • I love this extension, but it doesn't appear to be compatible with VS 2013 RC 1. Any idea when that might be available? Thanks for GREAT work.
      
    • I've just uploaded the 2013 version today (available here: http://visualstudiogallery.msdn.microsoft.com/9e08e5d3-6eb4-4e73-a045-6ea2a5cbdabe).  You should be able to export custom themes from 2012 and import them in 2013.  Feedback about the import experience is appreciated!
    • I downloaded and installed this as soon as I came in this morning. The import process was totally painless. In fact, it picked up my existing themes and even applied the one that I was using in 2012, exactly what I had wanted!! Thank you for your continued efforts to make my coding world a more colorful place!!
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