In this blog post, we will learn how to set up dark theme in SQL Server Management Studio.
What is a Dark Theme
The dark theme is very popular amongst users, and especially with technical users like software engineers, developers, programmers, etc. That’s why most of the IDE’s are also available with a dark mode.
Dark mode helps the user to focus on the screen, and in low light conditions, dark mode is the preferred option. It also helps to see the font color clearly and helps to save energy.
The SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) does not come with a dark mode by default, and there is an unofficial workaround to enable the dark theme. You have to tweak the configuration (ssms.pkgundef) file of SSMS.
In SSMS 2016 or later, users can can switch between the Blue, Blue (Extra Contrast) and Light color themes
The configuration (ssms.pkgundef) file is available at the following locations on SSMS: 2016, 2017, and 2018.
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\130\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\140\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio
C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio 18\Common7\IDE
SQL Server Management Studio Default Themes
Open the SSMS application and connect to the database instance. Click on Tools and then Options.
The themes available are Blue, Blue (Extra Contrast), and Light, but a Dark theme is not available by default.
Enable Dark Theme
Go to C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio 18\Common7\IDE and search for ssms.pkgundef file and open the file in Notepad ++ text editor.
Search for the Remove Dark theme and Add // below Remove Dark theme.
Restart the SQL Server Management Studio and the Dark theme will be available under the color theme drop-down box. Select the Dark theme.
SQL Server Management Studio will switch to a dark theme.
Follow our article below on how to install SQL Server 2019 Express Edition.
The Dark theme is the most popular theme amongst both technical and non-technical users. It helps to focus on the screen, and in low light conditions it is the preferred option. It also helps to save energy.