Visual Studio 2013 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.

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by Brian11111 | July 06 2015

by TysonJ | June 27 2015

A piece of shit. I wasted 30 precious minutes of my life dicking around with these random settings. This wouldn't be necessary if VS didn't look like ass to begin with.

by Christian Macklin | June 14 2015

Easy to use, very fast, love it.

by yalcinyoung | June 05 2015

Thank you very much
super design

by RJain_SMRH | May 14 2015

by Michael Tomasch | May 14 2015

Couldnt have been easier to install,
ran the installer launched visual studio
and began coding withing 60 seconds. The
themes are great, and couldnt have asked
for it to be any easier.

by ootomaskooo | May 10 2015

Doesn't install on Visual Studio Community with Update 4.

by Yann Duran | April 28 2015

If it wasn't for this extension, I would never have even started using VS 2012. I'm so happy that it eventually came to VS 2013 as well.

I *really* don't understand why this functionality hasn't been included in VS itself. Surely MS has heard by now that their customers want to be able to have more than 3 preset choices, and to be able to *customize* their working environment.

You only have to look at how many time this extension has been downloaded. And that doesn't count the unhappy people who have never even heard of this extension. Let's hope that MS has finally rectified this in VS 2014.

by 1antares1 | April 14 2015

Maravillado por el complemento.
5 puntos y van corto.


by sundarrjn20 | April 11 2015

Excellent Editor and its free of cost that makes this app more interesting. Am working on this editor for the past 3 months in office as well as in home.

I didn't find any issues with this. Only concern i want to tell to Microsoft developers is, Buddies give some more color schemes to this excellent and innovative app

Thank you Microsoft!!!

by Tim Abell | April 02 2015

Typical bloody microsoft throw it over the fence and abandon it. Where's the github repo? How do you contribute fixes and improvements? Where's the author's responses to *any* q&a or reviews on this site. So close but yet so far as usual.

There has been plenty of feedback over *years* that there are problems with colour choices that could easily be fixed, but *nothing* has been done, not even the courtesy to respond.

I long for microsoft's demise so I don't have to put up with this kind of closed source freeware crap any longer.


by Ondřej | March 13 2015

Playing with colors when I get bored from coding raises my mood.

by Baris Konag | January 16 2015

A perfect plugin. But dark editor now has some problems in visual studio 2013 with the latest update.

by Stormjack | December 18 2014

This is a great tool. It would warrant 5 stars if it had better documentation with pictures. In VS 2013, I had difficulty finding the correct settings for some areas, like dialog background colors. This was particularly difficult with a dark theme that I customized from the installed "Dark" theme. For a few settings that were difficult to identify, I resorted to using the VS menus of Tools > Options > Environment > Fonts and Colors, and paging through the various colors.

Please consider putting an "Export Theme" button next to the "Edit Theme" and "Create Copy of Theme" buttons that appear in the custom themes selection boxes. It's not readily apparent that you can export a theme by first selecting "Edit Theme" and then choosing the "Export Theme" button. I was eventually able to find it, but it took several minutes of hunting.

by Nadim Kobeissi | November 22 2014

Thank you for this! Wonderful addition to VS. Superb.

by gr_____________________ | November 13 2014

Can't live without it - I wish this kind of color tweaking available on Windows 8+, to customize OS colors for all apps (hardwired bright white background is killing my eyes).

While not without some glitches (e.g. "Fonts & Colors" getting out-of-sync), 5*.

by ElsaBrooks | November 13 2014

Very nice overall, but doesn't work well with the "Fonts and Colors" visual studio settings relating to the text editor, it keeps mixing them up and the "Import settings" button the extension provides is bugged.
So if you stay on one theme all the time you won't encounter much problems, but if like me you switch between themes depending on the time of the day (light during the day, dark during the night) the Fonts and Colors bug(s) prevent you from switching between multiple custom themes (you can only switch between a custom theme and a regular theme without fucking up the Fonts and Colors).

by zee89757 | October 21 2014

I like it!!

by Bart W. Kemps | October 13 2014

I used to have the 'tan' window colors with solarized editor colors. I don't know if it's the settings import/export functionality or the theme editor, but it's close to impossible to set it up like that now.

Now i've succeeded getting things just the way I want them, I'd like to export my current color settings as a theme. You should add that feature.

by Julius Holmberg | October 10 2014

Easy and good. All I could want is more themes.

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  • it's can not be installed.
    2 Posts | Last post August 22, 2015
    • The extension "Visual Studio 2013 Color Theme Editor" requires a version of the NET framework that is not installed.
      vs version: visual studio 2013 update 4.
    • windows version is win10
  • Unable to install
    1 Posts | Last post August 18, 2015
    • VS2013 cannot be installed under win10. Because there is no specific version of the dot net Framework, but I installed all dot nte netframe version
  • Can We Have This Open Source (GitHub)?
    2 Posts | Last post July 18, 2015
      Would it be possible to release this to Microsoft On GitHub? (
    • Specifically: Microsoft.VisualStudio.PkgDef (supporting other projects which use PkgDef format). 
      Documentation about the specific format would be an additional plus, but, could be filled-in by the community if released.
  • NullReferenceException when importing partial .pkgdef theme files
    1 Posts | Last post July 18, 2015
    • The Color Theme Editor encounters an error when importing partial .pkgdef theme files used by Visual Studio extensions. (Details:
      This is an important scenario for third-party extension developers because the Color Theme Editor is the only publically available tool that could be used for generating and maintaining partial .pkgdef theme files. (Details:
      What are the plans to support extension developers?
  • Import Color Themes on Computers Without This Extension?
    1 Posts | Last post June 27, 2015
    • Is it at all possible to import the themes we make here on a computer that doesn't have Visual Studio Color Theme Editor? That would be cool if you could. If you can, could you import a color theme into VS 2015? It feels weird trying to use VS 2015 RC without my color theme.
  • Will there be a version for 2015?
    1 Posts | Last post June 24, 2015
    • Recently I installed Windows 10 to my computer and VS2013 didn't work, so I changed to the 2015 RC to find out this did not exist! Will this awesome plugin be updated to 2015?
  • Can you add Monokai color theme?
    1 Posts | Last post June 14, 2015
    • There are many good color themes that are available for all Code Editors, except for Visual Studio 2013 and 2015.  I found Monokai is the most comfortable to look at, and apparently is one of the most popular themes.  I use Visual Studio Community 2013 and 2015.
  • Fresh Install of VS 2013 Community- Will not Install
    2 Posts | Last post June 11, 2015
    • I just downloaded VS 2013 Community and signed in with my profile. However, whenever I try to install this extension I get the error saying I don't have the latest version of the .Net framework installed. I should. What's wrong here?
      6/11/2015 3:26:28 PM - Install Error : Microsoft.VisualStudio.ExtensionManager.MissingTargetFrameworkException: The extension 'Visual Studio 2013 Color Theme Editor' requires a version of the .NET Framework that is not installed.
         at Microsoft.VisualStudio.ExtensionManager.ExtensionManagerService.CheckForValidDotNetFramework(IExtension extension)
         at Microsoft.VisualStudio.ExtensionManager.ExtensionManagerService.CheckForInstallBlockers(InstallableExtensionImpl extension, IInstalledExtensionList modifiedInstalledExtensionsList, Boolean isNestedExtension, Boolean& olderVersionInstalled)
         at Microsoft.VisualStudio.ExtensionManager.ExtensionManagerService.InstallInternal(InstallableExtensionImpl extension, Boolean perMachine, Boolean isNestedExtension, IDictionary`2 extensionsInstalledSoFar, List`1 extensionsUninstalledSoFar, IInstalledExtensionList modifiedInstalledExtensionsList, AsyncOperation asyncOp, UInt64 totalBytesToWrite, UInt64& totalBytesWritten)
         at Microsoft.VisualStudio.ExtensionManager.ExtensionManagerService.BeginInstall(IInstallableExtension installableExtension, Boolean perMachine, AsyncOperation asyncOp)
         at Microsoft.VisualStudio.ExtensionManager.ExtensionManagerService.InstallWorker(IInstallableExtension extension, Boolean perMachine, AsyncOperation asyncOp)
    • Read the solution from user JonnyRocks and it worked. It was a bit touch and go, but basically you need to open the file "ColorThemeEditor" (which you just downloaded) in a program such as 7zip. 
      Find the file called "vsixmanifest". 
      Then double click on that file to edit it. It will look like XML. Take out the lines about dependencies, save, then close 7zip. 
      It will ask to update the .zip file. 
      Click yes. 
      Now after that has been all closed out, double click on the "ColorThemeEditor" file and it should install just fine. 
  • Will there be a version for VS 2015
    1 Posts | Last post June 02, 2015
    • Will there be a version of this vsix for Visual Studio 2015? I'm using the RC now but it cannot be installed.
  • Will there be a version for VS 2015
    1 Posts | Last post June 02, 2015
    • Will there be a version of this vsix for Visual Studio 2015? I'm using the RC now but it cannot be installed.
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