Windows 10 has a Dark Mode. The feature is not new, and it has been improved over time. Today it looks and works better than it did when it was first launched, back in 2016. When enabled, Dark Mode changes the appearance of the Windows 10 interface from white to black. That can be useful in low-light conditions, like when working at night, and it can be equally great for users who prefer black instead of white. Here is how to get Dark Mode in Windows 10, how to turn on Dark Mode, and how to disable it to get back to normal:
What is the Dark Mode, and how to get it in Windows 10
Dark Mode was first introduced to Windows 10 in its Anniversary Update from 2016. Since then, it has been gradually improved, and the latest version of Windows 10 - May 2020 Update has the best Dark Mode yet. Therefore, if you don't have Dark Mode on your Windows 10 computer or device, all you have to do is update Windows 10 to the latest version. One way to do that is by using the Windows 10 Update Assistant.
When you turn on Dark Mode in Windows 10, the operating system and many of its apps change their visuals to dark colors. The most apparent changes are these:
- The plain white background used in apps turns black
- The white background color used on menus turns to black
- The light-gray default scrollbars used in apps become dark-gray
- The default black text displayed in apps turns to white, etc.
TIP: If you want to know whether Dark Mode is good for you, we recommend this thorough analysis from Wired: Dark mode isn't as good for your eyes as you believe.
How to turn on Dark Mode in Windows 10
If you want to enable Dark Mode in Windows 10, first open the Settings. One way to do that is to click Start and then Settings. Then, go to the Personalization section.
In the column on the left, click or tap Colors. On the right, you see several settings related to colors.
There are two ways to turn on Dark Mode. The fastest is to click the "Choose your color" dropdown list and then choose Dark. When you do that, the Dark Mode is applied immediately to Windows 10 and the apps that support it.
Another method to enable the Dark Mode is to select Dark for both "Choose your default Windows mode" and "Choose your default app mode". Windows 10 gives you two independent options for greater flexibility. The first option turns on Dark Mode only for Windows 10, while the second enables it just for the apps that support Dark Mode.
After you enable the Dark Mode, you can also set whether you want Transparency effects by enabling or disabling their switch. If you scroll down a bit, you can also choose an accent color.
Below the list of Windows colors, you can also decide where the accent color gets applied:
- Start, taskbar, and action center
- Title bars and window borders
Experiment with the transparency effects and the accent color, and set them as you wish. When done, close Settings and the Dark Mode remains activated, using your specific personalization settings.
How to turn off Dark Mode in Windows 10
When you are bored with the Dark Mode, you can disable it. However, the process is not intuitive. To turn off the Dark Mode in Windows 10, open Settings and go to Personalization. On the left column, choose Colors, and then select the following options:
- In the "Choose your color" dropdown list, choose Custom.
- Under "Choose your default Windows mode," select Dark.
- Under "Choose your default app mode," check the box for Light.
TIP: If you wish, you can turn off the Dark Mode by switching to Light Mode. Here's how: How to enable or disable the Light Mode in Windows 10.
Scroll down a bit and experiment with the transparency effects and the accent colors, as explained in the previous section of this tutorial.
Which apps support Dark Mode in Windows 10?
When enabled, the Dark Mode is applied to many parts of Windows 10: the Start Menu, the Search box, Settings, File Explorer, and many Windows 10 apps (Calculator, Photos, Mail and Calendar, Microsoft Store, Facebook's Messenger). The number of apps with support for Dark Mode is growing in time, as more software developers implement it.
We noticed that Microsoft Office also uses the Dark Mode automatically when you set it in Windows 10. However, some apps, like Microsoft Edge, don't, and you have to turn it on separately. Here is how to enable or disable the Dark Mode in Microsoft Edge.
NOTE: To make things even more confusing, we noticed that the new Microsoft Edge, based on the same engine as Google Chrome, respects the settings you make in Windows 10 and enables the Dark Mode when you turn it on in the Settings app.
Do you like the Dark Mode in Windows 10?
The Dark Mode can be a cool way to use Windows 10. It can be more comfortable on your eyes, it can make the apps more readable, and some people might even think it is prettier. However, we like the Light Mode too, and we switch between modes once every couple of weeks. Before closing this tutorial, let us know which mode you like more and why. Are you a fan of the dark side? Or is light the only path forward? 🙂 Comment below and let's discuss.