Change Google's Black Navbar Back To White - gHacks Tech News

Change Google's Black Navbar Back To White

Google recently rolled out a design change to their search interface. The navigation at the top linking to several Google properties, a user's Google account and other Google services has a new black background and grey font colors. This new design change has been rolled out to google.com and all country specific Google domains. You do not only find it on search pages, but other Google properties that display the bar at the top.

The contrast to the white page is extreme, and there are certainly users who would like to switch back to the original all white page layout.

Fear not, there is a way. The first thing that I do whenever a major player like Google changes their interface is to look if there is a user script to revert the changes.

In the case of Google's new black bar there is. Google Light Navbar restores the original white nav bar and blue font color on all Google pages.

Lets take a look at the new design first that you see on the Google homepage.

google black nav

When you install the user script the interface will look like this instead.

google white bar

The userscript works in the Firefox web browser, Google Chrome and Opera. Chrome users can simply install the script right away on the script project page.

Firefox users need to install Greasemonkey or Scriptish first before they can do so. Both are add-ons for the web browser that add userscript support to it.

The install button becomes active after one of the add-ons has been installed in the Internet browser.

Opera users finally need to specify a director on their computer where they put their userscripts in. This is done with a click on Opera > Settings > Preferences > Advanced > Content > JavaScript Options and the selection of a directory under browse.

They then need to download the script and put it into the designated directory on their computer.

The script works right away without restart. You may need to reload the Google page however in case it has already been open in the browser.

What's your opinion on the new Google black navigation bar? I personally dislike the high contrast between the black bar and the white background of the rest of the page.

Update: The userscript is not needed anymore as google is now using a white navbar instead of a black one by default. The script seems to have been pulled by its author. It is no longer available.





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    Comments

    1. coola said on June 29, 2011 at 11:53 am
      Reply

      1. First, install GreaseMonkey:
      https://addons.mozilla.org/pl/firefox/addon/greasemonkey/
      2. Second, install GoogleBar Classic GreaseMonkey script:
      http://userscripts-mirror.org/scripts/show/105744

      Say bye to black bar.

      1. Mushaf said on June 29, 2011 at 5:05 pm
        Reply

        Yeah, Google Bar Classic works better.

      2. Davies said on July 9, 2011 at 6:17 pm
        Reply

        Change Google Black bar tab : thanks Cooola: – just tried your Solution – YES, YES -IT WORKS:

        1. First, install GreaseMonkey:
        https://addons.mozilla.org/pl/firefox/addon/greasemonkey/
        2. Second, install GoogleBar Classic GreaseMonkey script:
        http://userscripts-mirror.org/scripts/show/105744

        Say bye to black bar.

      3. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 6:10 pm
        Reply

        I have google chrome and I am trying to get rid of the annoying black bar that keeps showing up at the top of my google page, I did the first step installing GreaseMonkey: and it worked fine but when I did the second step userscripts it would not do, a message came up on my screen that said website unavailable. That something could be wrong with my internet connection, that I may need to check my internet cables. What do I need to do? Why wil it not do?

      4. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 6:29 pm
        Reply

        Also, I saw at the top of this page that userscript works in the Firefox web browser, Google Chrome and Opera. Chrome users can simply install the script right away on the script project page. I also saw that firefox users need to install Greasemonkey first before they can do so, since I am a chrome user instead of Firefox did I even need to install Grese Monkey like I already did? Please help.

      5. computeruser said on April 10, 2015 at 12:06 am
        Reply

        Is Grease Monkey considered as a Script or is userscripts-mirror.org/scripts/show/105744 the only script?

        1. Martin Brinkmann said on April 10, 2015 at 8:07 am
          Reply

          Greasemonkey is a browser extension for Firefox that can load scripts such as the one you listed in the browser.

    2. wmq said on June 29, 2011 at 11:55 am
      Reply

      You can also use userscripts in Chrome with Tampermonkey –
      https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/dhdgffkkebhmkfjojejmpbldmpobfkfo
      It provides enhanced support for userscripts.

    3. Dean said on June 29, 2011 at 11:56 am
      Reply

      “The first thing that I do whenever a major player like Google changes their interface is to look if there is a user script to revert the changes.”

      Mind if I ask why? Seems a bit odd for a tech reviewer….

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 29, 2011 at 12:07 pm
        Reply

        Dean this has actually two reasons. First, when there is change there are definitely users who do not like it. Even if I like the change, I want to find solutions to revert them to give those users the tools at hand to do it. For me, it is more of a “can it be done” research than a “I do not like changes at all” kind of thing.

    4. varun said on June 29, 2011 at 11:58 am
      Reply

      I am hating this bar.. Is there any way to change it back to white….

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 29, 2011 at 12:07 pm
        Reply

        You could read the guide, you know ;)

        1. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 6:43 pm
          Reply

          I have Google chrome and I am trying to get rid of the black bar that keeps coming up and I did the fist step downloading the sit GreaseMonkey then I tried to do the second step with the site userscripts and it said website unavailable then I saw at the top of this page that chrome users can simply install the script right away on the script project page. Where is the script project page? I also saw that GreaseMonkey works in the Firefox browser so since I am a chrome user did I even need to install GreaseMonkey? Please help. Thank You

        2. Martin Brinkmann said on April 9, 2015 at 6:49 pm
          Reply

          The script is no longer available and the userscripts website is not available anymore as well. You can use userscripts-mirror.org instead using the same url but there is no guarantee that the script still works.

        3. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 8:22 pm
          Reply

          Am I suppose to try installing userscripts-mirror.org? That is what I did and a message came up at the bottom of my computer that said something like may contain things that may damage computer or something like that install anyway? Am I suppose to do that? If that works will that get rid of the black bar? Do you know what makes that black bar start coming up anyway nothing like that used to be on my computer.

        4. Martin Brinkmann said on April 9, 2015 at 8:30 pm
          Reply

          Chrome does not allow direct installations of userscripts anymore. Google does not really use a black bar anymore so it must be something else but I don’t know what unfortunately. Maybe post a screenshot of it?

        5. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 8:48 pm
          Reply

          This black bar shows up when I am looking at a facebook page and I go out of it and back to google the black bar will be there. This bar says +You, Search and alot of other things across it like it has something to do with a google account I tried to sign up for but maybe I need out of the google account and maybe it will go away. How do I get out of a google account? You said maybe post a Screenshot of it, how do I go about doing that?

        6. Martin Brinkmann said on April 9, 2015 at 9:30 pm
          Reply

          Sounds like Google’s bar at the top. Only that it is white on my system not black.

        7. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 9:40 pm
          Reply

          Why is the google bar black? Can you just tell me how I can get out of my google account I have tried everything or can you get out of a google accout?

        8. Martin Brinkmann said on April 9, 2015 at 9:45 pm
          Reply

          If it says you, you are not logged in.

        9. computeruser said on April 10, 2015 at 1:51 am
          Reply

          I saw all of your answers to me where you said I cant get rid of the google bar. But I wanted to ask you about this I just saw where someone said they were hating this black bar and they asked is there any way to change it back to white and you answered them with you could read the guide, you know;) I wanted to ask what guide where you talking about that they could read, I wanted to ask it might help me change mine back to white.

      2. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 9:36 pm
        Reply

        The black bar that comes up on my computer says +You, Search, Images, Maps, You tube, etc.

        1. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 9:52 pm
          Reply

          Ok if I am not logged in how do I get the bar off the screen? I tried installing or downloading userscripts-mirror.org that you gave me and nothing different happened.

        2. Martin Brinkmann said on April 9, 2015 at 10:07 pm
          Reply

          You don’t. It is part of the Google website.

        3. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 10:09 pm
          Reply

          You said your bar like that was white not black how do I get mine white or can I get rid of it all together or does it automatically go with google? That is all I need to know. I tried installing or downloading userscripts-mirror.org and nothing happened. Is that what I was supposed to do? I guess thats all I need to know. Thank you for all your help.

        4. Martin Brinkmann said on April 9, 2015 at 10:14 pm
          Reply

          I don’t know why the bar is black and don’t know how to get it white. Maybe Google is experimenting with that. That userscript is ages old and no longer working unfortunately.

    5. odio said on June 29, 2011 at 1:06 pm
      Reply

      i never seen that bar before, i will keep grey for now to see if is util for anything

    6. Simakuutio said on June 29, 2011 at 1:08 pm
      Reply

      I have nothing against this new black background. But as always, this is all about personal taste so if something looks good to me, it looks like shit to someone else… can’t please everyone, you know…

    7. Daniel said on June 29, 2011 at 2:01 pm
      Reply

      Really, Google has lost it’s sense of esthetics!

      This black stripe makes my monitor look even smaller. Ugh!

      Do they test drive their changes before putting them out to the web?

    8. az said on June 29, 2011 at 2:20 pm
      Reply

      Hallelujah! Thank the lord for Greasemonkey – Thank the lord for Martin!! I have now got rid of that hideous, intrusive black bar. But it shouldn’t be necessary to have to go to these lengths. Options should be available….

      1. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 11:15 pm
        Reply

        Can you tell me what you did to get rid of the black bar I have one on my computer that says +You, Search, Images, You tube, maps, etc. across it and I tried everthing to get mine to turn back to White and it wont change its still black I downloaded or installed Greasemonkey and nothing happened, is that what I was supposed to do? Please get back to me. Thank You

    9. az said on June 29, 2011 at 2:25 pm
      Reply

      PS On reading the thread again, I see that I omitted to thank coola! Great stuff.

    10. Enigma said on June 29, 2011 at 2:42 pm
      Reply

      I use iGoogle with this theme http://i.imgur.com/4iYbc.png So it don’t really bother me.

      But I think the idea was to be a contrast so it gets noticed in the first place.

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 29, 2011 at 2:57 pm
        Reply

        I agree, but it is working to well in my opinion ;)

    11. Ed said on June 29, 2011 at 3:24 pm
      Reply

      Funny, Martin, that you don’t care for the black bar; it seems pretty similar to gHacks black menu bar ^___^

      Cheers mate!
      E

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 29, 2011 at 3:25 pm
        Reply

        Good find ;) Mabye I’m used to that one ;)

        1. Dajazdj said on June 29, 2011 at 9:34 pm
          Reply

          why have i got this new navigation bar on my pc but not my netbook when both have the same google home page.On the netbook it’s still got the standard navigation bar and on the pc the new one

        2. Martin Brinkmann said on June 30, 2011 at 12:06 am
          Reply

          I think it is still being rolled out.

    12. shle896 said on June 29, 2011 at 3:32 pm
      Reply

      Thanks for this post. The new black navigation bar simply doesn’t mesh with the rest of Google’s page colors. I imagine Google will tweak the color before it’s over with.

      1. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 9:47 pm
        Reply

        Also how do I post a screen shot of it? I will figure the rest of it out for myself. Thank You for your help.

    13. Ur_Daddy said on June 29, 2011 at 4:21 pm
      Reply

      I swore this was a joke article when I saw ghacks black menu bar. As it turns out… it wasn’t, but I still chuckled at the irony. LOL

    14. AC said on June 29, 2011 at 4:56 pm
      Reply

      I like everything that Google has changed apart from the black bar. Otherwise everything is fine by me. I like the new smaller logo on the front page.

    15. montuos said on June 29, 2011 at 5:35 pm
      Reply

      I actually like the black bar. Mind you, that is primarily because I use a different theme for each of my Gmail accounts so I can distinguish them at a glance, and the black bar will blend in better with more of my themes. Sadly, it hasn’t yet shown up on the two accounts I most want it for, but it looks fine with the Tea House theme. The blue text of the original bar can be hard to read under the color overlay when you use a theme or custom background image; the white text shows up much better for me.

      I suspect I won’t like the black navbar with the Cherry Blossom theme I have on an account I don’t use often, but I don’t like the blue/white one there either — I’d rather have it coordinate with pinks to match the theme. In a perfect world the navbar would be included in the theme customization process.

    16. ReX said on June 29, 2011 at 5:42 pm
      Reply

      And here I thought it was somehow getting the color from my Personas theme. Weird thing is that I checked with Chromium at the time and it was still white.

    17. DComedian said on June 29, 2011 at 7:28 pm
      Reply

      You can also use the Stylish extension in Firefox along with this User Style…

      http://userstyles.org/styles/49946/google-navbar-fixer

      Stylish…

      https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/stylish/

    18. Jojo said on June 29, 2011 at 8:30 pm
      Reply

      WOW! I love this change! Google is so much faster now.

    19. tijsco said on June 29, 2011 at 9:05 pm
      Reply

      Eh Martin, the new black Google NavBar looks exactly like the menubar of GHacks to me… I like both, but I don’t understand why you hate it.

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 30, 2011 at 12:21 am
        Reply

        Never said I hate it.

    20. Dajazdj said on June 29, 2011 at 9:30 pm
      Reply

      I have a normal stand up pc and a netbook now on the pc it’s got this new navigation bar on it and it did come on on the netbook but it’s gone now basically my question is why is it on my google homepage on the pc and not on my netbook homepage cos i think there linked cos both say my name in the top corner when im on google this may be a stupid question cos im not very good with computers and id have more chance understanding punjabi than i would with all the computer terminology so please no complicated replys

      1. odio said on June 29, 2011 at 10:14 pm
        Reply

        stay calm, this probably is being changed in parts. you will get the bar.
        do you use the same browser/version on both?

        1. DAJAZDJ said on June 30, 2011 at 10:54 pm
          Reply

          yeah the new ones on the pc and it was on the laptop but from the laptop it’s gone back to the normal one i’ve done a system restore a couple of days on the laptop maybe this has something to do with it but i cant remember if it wason before i did that or not

    21. JJ said on June 29, 2011 at 11:51 pm
      Reply

      I don’t mind the navbar change (though giving users a choice would have been a good idea) but I do thoroughly hate the new, all-gray icons. That’s a poor design decision from a usability standpoint. Icons can better communicate their identity if they include unique coloration in addition to shape. It’s a bit harder now to select a search category from a quick glance or peripheral view. Hopefully someone will create a userscript soon that will bring the life and usefulness of color back the now dead, gray icons.

    22. Auctioneer Mark said on June 30, 2011 at 2:28 am
      Reply

      Any idea where (and how to put back or find/use) the ‘link url’ and iframe code for the maps? ug +

    23. Jojo said on June 30, 2011 at 5:03 am
      Reply

      I wish Google would send some time on useful changes, like when (or if) will Google Search be able to store and remember user settings? I am stuck with displaying only 10 hits per page as Google will not remember my changes.

      1. JJ said on June 30, 2011 at 5:58 am
        Reply

        Are you signed in? If not, you’ll get the default 10 results per page. If you are signed in, are you using “Google Instant” ? If you are, that limits you to 10 results per page also. If you’re signed in and not using Google Instant, are you clicking the “Save Preferences” button? If it’s none of those, I’m stumped. My preferences work fine, from browser to browser and computer to computer.

    24. Manta said on June 30, 2011 at 11:45 am
      Reply

      doch…
      I liek when Google changes every time in special events…. that was so funy, and google always was so colourful….. now it looks like a bit old, and sad…
      now summer, but google looks like everyday are cold cold winter….. even Autumm is more colourful…
      I don;t like new look….. really, it sad..

    25. Thomas Offinga said on June 30, 2011 at 12:25 pm
      Reply

      Hi! I’ve created a free Chrome Extension that automatically reverts it back to the white scheme: http://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/endgebikgckndgcchcgijhjiiofnfbnm

    26. guest said on June 30, 2011 at 9:06 pm
      Reply

      The first thing I did was change my default search engine to Bing.

      1. nice said on July 1, 2011 at 5:28 pm
        Reply

        Bing does seem to appeal to the style-over-substance crowd.

    27. Mitchell said on July 1, 2011 at 3:43 pm
      Reply

      Isn’t there a way to do this on Internet Explorer 9 as well??

      1. shle896 said on July 1, 2011 at 4:25 pm
        Reply

        Doubtful. You should try using Google Chrome. It’s safer and simpler to use than Internet Explorer and there are loads of options to customize. Firefox is good , too.

    28. wmadavis said on July 16, 2011 at 8:14 pm
      Reply

      It works! Thank you! So glad to be rid of that ugly black bar!

    29. Anonymous said on July 18, 2011 at 12:44 am
      Reply

      How to change the black Goolge bar to the white in IE9?
      Please advise……..

    30. Joan said on July 22, 2011 at 5:43 pm
      Reply

      Cant understand why they did it. The black bar is just clutter. If I wanted a black Google I would use something like: http://www.blackl.com
      If I go to Google I want it white and simple.We already have loads of new menus on the left, we don’t need a black Google bar to remind us of even more links…

    31. cjimmrun said on July 24, 2011 at 7:52 pm
      Reply

      May have missed it but didn’t see a `fix’ [revet to white] for IE8

      Using old XP Home w/ IE8 and find the black bar a pain – Google seems to care not – too bad, I thought better of them

      Anyway, if I missed the data fix pls point me in the correct direction – far too much personal time has been invested in this – Thx!

    32. Nikson N. L said on October 28, 2011 at 8:35 pm
      Reply

      Google with a black background! ”

      The latest version (release) is the “Black Google Ads – Adsense” page is owned by Google.com, Google Inc.
      Certified by: “Google Internet Authority, Google Inc”
      Encrypted page.

      address:
      https://sites.google.com/site/gblackads

    33. computeruser said on April 9, 2015 at 9:45 pm
      Reply

      Also how do I post a screen shot of it? I guess I will have to figure it out myself. Thank You for your help.

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