In the standard Windows (Win32) version of the Arduino IDE, theme settings like syntax coloring can be modified in C:\Program Files (x86)\Arduino\lib\theme\theme.txt.

For the Windows Store app version of the IDE the theme files are stored in protected app storage space.

Is there a simple/safe way to change theme settings for the Windows Store app version of the IDE without messing up security settings and inadvertently lowering Windows security?

(It would be easier and better if theme settings could be moved to the ArduinoData user folder where preferences.txt is stored.)

  • 2
    Don't use the Windows App Store version?
    – Majenko
    Apr 24 '17 at 11:16
  • I assume not using the Windows Store version is not an option (because that's the easiest answer). An alternative that might work (if you have admin access) is to use Junction.exe to create a symbolic link between a writeable directory and where the themes are stored. But changing the perms on that directory is going to be easier. Apr 24 '17 at 11:54

I think rrz0's answer skipped the part of the question: "For the Windows Store app version of the IDE the theme files are stored in protected app storage space."

The only way is to take control of the windows app folder but I believe this is risky and M$ suggests that this can brick your pc (take that with a grain of salt).

There is an offline windows installer and zip link on the downloads page which I used to replace the windows store version. I see no advantage to the store version.


Working from what Ignacio Soler Garcia wrote (which didn't work for me), I tried around and came up with a solution for my case (I downloaded the OneDarkArduino Theme from GitHub):

  • Unpack the theme if it came in a ZIP file
  • copy the folder called "theme" (there should be a bunch of .txt and .svg files in there)
  • paste it into the folder where all your projects are (usually something like C:\User\Documents\Arduino) - it needs to be named "theme"
  • (re)start the Arduino IDE and now it should start with the new theme already loaded

I can confirm that changing ownership/security on the WindowsApps folder half-bricked my machine... it still ran classic windows but every single store App wouldn't run and the store itself stopped working... and I couldn't reset the security back again - 4 hours later and a complete restore with Microsoft's recovery download and a 16GB USB boot load , I'm older and wiser.


There is a way, but not necessarily simple. You basically need to replace the current theme files with the new ones.

  1. Rename {Arduino IDE installation folder}/lib/theme to {Arduino IDE installation folder}/lib/theme.bak
  2. Download https://github.com/jeffThompson/DarkArduinoTheme/archive/master.zip
  3. Copy the theme folder from the downloaded file to {Arduino IDE installation folder}/lib
  4. Restart the Arduino IDE if it's running.

I found the solution, based on a new functionality for themes that I wasn't aware of.

You need to create a themes folder in the folder where your projects are (the one that appears in the preferences section) and put inside it the theme in a zip file. After restarting it will appear as a new theme in the combobox themes.

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