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    by Geoff Woodhead

    I was recently asked if it was possible to change the colour of selected items within dialog boxes. I’ll be honest, it is not something that had bothered me until it was pointed out to me but now every time I look at the dialog box my OCD kicks in and my skin starts crawling (I’m not crazy -> my mum had me tested). If there is any light shining on your screen at all or if it’s tilted at 0.5° off the optimum angle it becomes virtually impossible to see which line is selected – see fig. 1 below.

    Fig. 1


    In case you can’t see it either, I’ve got the first line selected. Not dark enough is it? If up until the last paragraph you were blissfully unaware but now find yourself in a similar situation to me, worry not! I have a solution.

    Unlike most other colours in Autodesk products this cannot be controlled from within the application. It is actually drawn from a Windows environment variable, don’t be put off its easy to change. With that said, dependent on how locked down your system is you may need some assistance from an administrator.

    First up we need to access the Windows desktop personalization options menu, on Windows 7 the easiest way to do this is to right click on your desktop and select Personalize as highlighted by the red box on fig. 2 below.

    Fig. 2


    Next we need to select Window Color as shown in the red box on fig. 3 below.

    Fig. 3


    If you are presented with the window shown in fig. 4 you will need to select Advanced appearance settings… otherwise proceed to the next step.

    Fig. 4


    The setting that controls the highlighted line colour is 3D Objects and needs to be selected from the Item: dropdown menu as shown by the red box on fig. 5. Once selected you can change the colour to one of your preference using the Color 1: dropdown shown in the green box. It is possible to get the colour mixing palette up by selecting Other from the dropdown. I recommend you don’t pick something too bright or out there as it also changes the top of some dialog boxes. See fig. 6 for the final result!

    Fig. 5


    Fig. 6


    Much better, happy dialoging!!



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