A look at File Explorer's Dark Theme in Windows 10 version 1809
Microsoft plans to launch a dark theme for the built-in file manager File Explorer in the upcoming feature release for Windows 10.
Windows 10 version 1809 features an option to turn on dark theme support for File Explorer which changes the default light theme to a dark one.
Dark Mode has been available in Windows 10 for a while but enabling the mode did not apply to File Explorer. One of the top user requests of Windows Insiders was to add a dark theme to File Explorer.
The implementation was technical challenging as File Explorer uses legacy user interface frameworks that can't take advantage of dark mode APIs that UWP apps have access to.
File Explorer's dark theme
First thing you may want to know is how you enable the new dark mode in File Explorer. There is no option or indication in File Explorer itself that it supports a dark theme as it is controlled globally in the Settings application.
In other words: you enable dark theme support in the Settings and any application that supports it will switch to its dark theme automatically.
Here is how that is done:
- Use the keyboard shortcut Windows-I to open the Settings application. You may also click on Start and select Settings there if you prefer to use the mouse.
- Go to Personalization > Colors.
- Scroll down until you find the "choose your default app mode" section.
- Switch it from Light to Dark.
The change is immediate. You will notice that the Settings app loads its dark theme and that any other application that you run that supports the feature does the same.
When you open File Explorer afterward it is using the dark theme as well automatically. The dark background, from pitch black to dark gray, is used throughout the interface. Microsoft uses light gray colors for text currently and uses the same icon sets as in light mode.
An earlier preview version of File Explorer's dark theme used darker colors but Microsoft decided to change that initial color scheme to a lighter one based on user feedback from Insiders.
Now You: Do you prefer dark or light themes? What's your take on Microsoft's File Explorer implementation?Advertisement