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Visual Studio Color Theme Editor


Allows users to customize the color palette used for menus, toolbars, tabs, title bars, and other environment colors.

4.5 Star
Visual Studio
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5 Star
by Mahendra Varma Keerthipati | August 20 2013

Greatful idea from Microsoft to make developers feel pleasant and suggesting you to provide same kind of plug-in for VS2010 too...

5 Star
by Ovidiu Ionescu | August 17 2013

1 Star
by SkewMatrix | June 08 2013

No obvious way to change the color scheme of the Start Page. (The default color scheme is flawed because it uses light-on-dark for left pane and dark-on-light for right/news pane.)

5 Star
by Dr.Neuron | May 23 2013

Simple but enough powerful. Has potential for further enhancements and room for new features and options. Will impatiently wait new updates with new added capabilities. Thank you developer for his time and effort!

5 Star
by Syperus | March 18 2013

Great Extension! Comes with a few themes and allows you to create your own theme. Keep up the good work!!

1 Star
by Girish_Nama | February 15 2013

all the themes cheap.
sari ki sari themes do kodi ki he.

5 Star
by km_al | February 13 2013

Awesome, quick install, restart VS and adds "Theme" to your toolbar.
I wanted this for big visual clue of what solution I was looking at when I have a lot open, when one VS window is green and the other is brown, it's pretty obvious.

3 Star
by 7ab | February 11 2013

4 Star
by davidhunter22 | December 27 2012

Just some feedback on some of the colors. I use the "tan" scheme as a base and found everything great other than two issues that I fixed locally. I suspect they may be issues in other base schemes.

1) Scroll bar handle when not selected has almost no contrast to the background of the scroll bar which makes it very hard to find the handle to move it. When selected it becomes darker and there is more contrast but this is the opposite of when you need contrast.

2) In various places VS uses boxes around "toggle" objects to indicate the're selected. For instance the "Match case" toggle on the find/replace pop up. These boxes, again at least in "Tan", have almost no contrast to the background color so it's very easy to make mistakes.

Other than that awesome!

4 Star
by Jesse Buesking | December 04 2012

Awesome plugin! Is there a mapping/explanation of what each name represents? (ie What is SortText?). When trying to customize it seems you have to either know what everything maps to already, or you have to apply one change at a time and see if that was the item you were hoping for.

4 Star
by Ronald Riveros [ronpy] | November 14 2012

Para los mas exigentes con la apariencias :D

5 Star
by Peter Juhasz | November 12 2012

I love the blue theme in Visual Studio 2012. Thank you.

5 Star
by Binori | October 17 2012

This extension make developers happy! :)

5 Star
by ChuckC | October 10 2012

5 Star
by Andre.Ziegler | September 13 2012

"must have" addon for VS 2010 because I don't like the default one. I'm now using a VS2008 theme.

5 Star
by rmoc | September 06 2012

5 Star
by gr_____________________ | September 05 2012

Until I installed this add-on, I cannot stand VS2010 colors.

Theme editor should be a standard feature in VS. I am waiting for VS2012 version, since VS2012 color schemes are even worse than 2010.

5 Star
by BillW33 | August 31 2012

Very cool idea, works well.
I'll add my voice to those who would like a 2012 version. :)

3 Star
by Brian C Chavez | August 28 2012

Hey guys, Visual Studio 2012 Theme editor. Let me know if it works for you.

5 Star
by stelios84 | August 26 2012

i dont like at all the new them of visual studio 2012 ! Please update it to get color theme!

1 - 20 of 122 Items   
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  • Pick up System colors?
    5 Posts | Last post December 09, 2012
    • This is a great extension, and I guess this is more a comment for the VS team. But I'm on XP, with a custom Windows Classic theme, and I hate it when apps decide to use their own color scheme. I wish that either VS or this extension had a way of reading my system colors and basing the scheme on that. I know that I can use this extension to go through one by one and adjust all the colors, and I guess I'll do that when I have an hour to spare, but I wish there were a simpler way.
    • There are some built-in themes, like the Windows Classic theme that uses the system colors. Would be nifty if this same concept could be applied to the new UI style though.
    • I'd also like an option to use current Windows theme colours.
    • How do you install this studid thing?
      When I run it, it installs in VS 2012 instead of 2012.
    • This extension is for Visual Studio 2010 only.  Downloading and double-clicking the VSIX file should prompt to install for Visual Studio 2010 (not 2012).  If that doesn't work I'd be curious to find out why, but as an alternative you can try opening Visual Studio 2010, going to Tools\Extension Manager, and searching from there for "color theme editor".  You should be able to find and install the extension from that dialog.
      If you're looking for the version that supports Visual Studio 2012 it's here:
  • Please let it work with VS 11
    14 Posts | Last post August 31, 2012
    • I've really enjoyed using this.  With VS 11 this extension becomes critically important to me, since MS has stubbornly forced light gray (new RC screenshots) on us.  PLEASE, PLEASE let this work on VS 11. Being able to add some contrast  (like that burgundy screen-shot you have here) is very important to me.
    • I love this extension.  Please make this work with Visual Studio 2012.  There are a lot of us there that would really appreciate it.  
    • +1 I can't go without this extension any more. It really does help people who are sensitive to high contrast. Thanks.
    • +1 I need to throw my hat in with this. Whilst I am a black background coder the dead 2012 UI is like a prison. 
    • +1 Agree on this. Please make it works on vs 2012.
    • +1 again.  VS2012 RTM still looks horribly grey.
    • +100 - please please please make it work with VS2012 - uggghhhh that all that flat grey!
    • Quoting Scott Hanselman in
      "Matt Johnson, one of the developers on the Visual Studio team, developed and released a theme editor extension for Visual Studio 2010 on Studio Gallery. His tool needs additional time and effort to work with Visual Studio 2012 given all the changes we made. As soon as it’s ready we will make it available. With Matt's tool you will be able make a wide variety of theme changes including updating the Status Bar colors to colors of your choosing."
      That'd be great news
    • Scott's got the right information, a VS 2012 version of this extension is nearly ready for release.  Thanks for your patience!
    • Please do this for VS 2012.
      Can't work with the 2 tone look. 
      I don't know that the guys at Microsoft are thinking. No wonder Apple is beating them. If Windows 8 release is like this then Microsoft shares will be penny stock!
    • "Matthew Johnson [MSFT]
      Scott's got the right information, a VS 2012 version of this extension is nearly ready for release.  Thanks for your patience!"
      Thanks Matthew!  Do you have any plans to allow us to change the icons themselves or allow us to revert back to the VS 2010 icons.  The VS 2012 icons make the IDE more difficult to use.  
    • +1! Please add VS2012 support!
    • +1. I hoped through Beta & RC I'd get used to it, or MS'd improve it, but even in RTM VS2012 is bland, gloomy and has awful contrast, making it really difficult to differentiate any of the UI components. It's like working in a dank cave. Very much looking forward to the new build of this extension!
    • Does anyone have trouble using this while working on Windows Workflow Foundation? The flow charts do get rendered well. I have to switch back to default in order to work with WF, 
  • Another Suggestion - Easy Pasting of Colour Codes
    3 Posts | Last post August 10, 2012
    • Could it also be made to easily Copy / Paste the Values from the "Color" drop-downs please?
      Currently I have to open each one and copy the code, then open each one and select / paste it into the specific color code box in the drop-down. When modifying multiple colours (such as all 7 of the Environment Colour sections) it would be much better to simply click on each combo text in turn (without actually opening the combo drop down) and pressing ctrl + V.
    • If you select a row and press Ctrl+C, it should copy that row's color. If you select another row, you should be able to use Ctrl+V to paste the color.  You can also select multiple rows for copy/paste, similar to pasting over a range of cells in Excel.  Please let me know if that doesn't work for you...
    • Ah that does work! I must have been trying to (stupidly) paste it OVER the combo before. Yep that functionality works great then. Thanks for this addon btw, I applaud anything that offers customisability, and VS2010 is now a lot easier on my eyes with lesser white / dark constrast (with the blues changed to something akin to VS2008). As I mentioned the only problem I have is knowing what sections of the Theme choser apply to what parts of the UI by name (highlight them, or point / click maybe?) Otherwise, great work!
  • Breakpoint Column Colour
    3 Posts | Last post August 10, 2012
    • Anyone know the name of the Breakpoint column? I just want to darken it a tad but can't for the life of me find it.
      Btw for the future, the ability to click on a section of the IDE and have it filter to the relevant colours for that section (or close surrounding ones) would be fantastic btw! Love the search but its still pretty hard if you don't know what they're called.
    • The breakpoints margin is part of the text editor, and is customizable through Tools\Options\Environment\Fonts and Colors.  The name of the color is "Indicator Margin", and you can customize its background color there (as well as the rest of the text editor's colors.
    • Thanks Matthew, didn't realise that one was customisable through the standard UI!
  • Hidden/Overflow File Tab Text Color
    1 Posts | Last post June 18, 2012
    • I don't know the official name of these but I will try to explain them as best as I can. Can I change the text color of the open file tabs that are not shown due to too many file tabs open already. For example, I have 10 files open but can only see 5 of the tabs. There is a down arrow to the right of the file tabs and when I click that I see the rest of the open files. How do I change the file text for those extra files?
  • Colour Key
    1 Posts | Last post June 13, 2012
    • Nice...thanks!
      is there a "map" to denote where each of the bazillion colours listed apply in the ide itself?
      i'm trying to change the font colour on the inactive doc tabs.
      thanks in advance.
  • How to use the theme colors in custom VSPackage tool windows
    3 Posts | Last post June 08, 2012
    • Hi Matthew,
      I'm developing a VSPackage extension for Visual Studio that contains a WPF tool window. How can i use the background color defined by the theme? Is there a name of a static resource?
      Best regards,
    • You can use keys from the VsBrushes class along with the DynamicResource extension (see  For example, you might use this for the background of your tool window in XAML (crossing my fingers and hoping XML-style input is allowed as input here):
      <... xmlns:vs="clr-namespace:Microsoft.VisualStudio.Shell;assembly=Microsoft.VisualStudio.Shell.10.0">
      <Border Background="{DynamicResource {x:Static vs:VsBrushes.ToolWindowBackgroundKey}}" />
    • Did anyone create a theme like monokai?
  • This is not necessary for the release candidate
    2 Posts | Last post June 04, 2012
    • There is already a theme editor built in to the VS 11. Go to Tools -> Options then select "Environment" on the left, and within the "General" selection, right at the top you see a description of "Visual Experience." If you like 'dark' then simply select 'Dark'.
    • That doesn't count as a theme editor.  You can only choose 'Light' and 'Dark', both of which I don't like.
  • Visual Studio 2012 Extension
    1 Posts | Last post June 02, 2012
    • Hi,
      I love your extension. Do you plan to make it available for VS 2012 as well?
  • VS11 support
    1 Posts | Last post April 08, 2012
    • It should be easy, more or less same code.
      Please add support for VS11.
      If it is possible it could be great also to make possible to change icons.
      Than whoever doesn't want new gray icons, can return colorful icons back.
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