The Microsoft Console Colortool

Published: Mar 26, 2019
Updated: Nov 15, 2021

Today I stumbled upon Microsoft’s Console ColorTool. I’ve long played around with the color scheme of my Windows Console to make things more readable and improve the aesthetic (with not much luck). This awesome tool let’s me make color changes easily, and the changes show up in Command Prompt, PowerShell, and Windows Subsystem for Linux Console. Nice.

To quickly get started with ColorTool, here are some steps:

  1. Download the latest from GitHub Releases and unzip it

  2. Add the unzipped files to your PATH. For example, I unzipped to files to C:\ColorTool then added that folder to my PATH. For reference, the contents of that folder are below

     ├── ColorTool.exe
     └── schemes
         ├── OneHalfDark.itermcolors
         ├── OneHalfLight.itermcolors
         ├── campbell-legacy.ini
         ├── campbell.ini
         ├── cmd-legacy.ini
         ├── deuteranopia.itermcolors
         ├── solarized_dark.itermcolors
         └── solarized_light.itermcolors
  3. Run colortool to see the full help menu

  4. Run colortool --schemes to display available schemes

  5. Run colortool --both <scheme> to apply the given scheme to both the current console and the defaults. My current favorite is campbell-legacy, so I ran colortool --both campbell-legacy

  6. Save your changes by doing

    1. Right-click your current console window
    2. Click Properties
    3. Click OK