How to Get Windows 10’s Dark Taskbar and Start Menu Back

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Before May 2019 update, Windows 10 used a dark Start menu, toolbar, context menus, and an action center with light-colored apps. Now it defaults to a light theme and if you turn on dark mode all your apps will turn dark. Here’s how to get a dark OS interface with light apps again.

First, run Windows Settings by opening the “Start” menu and clicking on the gear icon. Or you can press Windows + I on your keyboard.

When “Settings opens, select” Personalization. “

In the “Personalization” sidebar, select “Colors”.

In the color settings, find the “Choose your color” drop-down menu. If you click on it, you see three choices:

Light: This keeps Windows in its default light theme, which includes light-colored application windows and a light taskbar, Start menu, and action center.
Dark: This choice activates the dark theme in Windows, which makes the application windows and the Start menu, taskbar, and action center dark.
Customs: This setting allows you to choose a combination of dark and light theme settings, including a dark taskbar theme with a light app theme, which is equivalent to the old Windows 10 theme. So that’s what we will choose here.

Click on the “Choose your color” drop-down menu. In the menu that appears, select “Custom”.

When you select “Custom” from the color menu, two new options appear just below the “Choose your color” menu.

For “Choose your default Windows mode”, select “Dark”. For “Choose your default application mode”, choose “Clear”.

Immediately you’ll notice that the taskbar is now dark, while the app windows are clear – what Windows 10 used to look like.

Windows 10 with a dark theme and light windows.

After that, you are free to close “Settings”. Enjoy reliving the dark / light glory days of Windows 10!

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