Color schemes

If you do not like the default Terminal theme, you may want to change the colors that are used for the text and background. You can use colors from your theme, select one of the presets or use a custom scheme.

Use colors from your system theme

To use colors from the system theme:

  1. Open Edit ▸ Preferences.

  2. Your current profile is selected in the sidebar. If you wish to edit a different profile, click on its name.

  3. Select Colors.

  4. Check Use colors from system theme. The changes will be applied automatically.

Built-in schemes

You can choose one of the built-in color schemes: Black on light yellow, Black on white, Gray on black, Green on black, White on black, Tango light, Tango dark, Solarized light, Solarized dark. To set any of the built-in schemes:

  1. Open Edit ▸ Preferences.

  2. Your current profile is selected in the sidebar. If you wish to edit a different profile, click on its name.

  3. Select Colors.

  4. Make sure that Use colors from system theme is unchecked. Choose the desired color scheme from Built-in schemes. Color scheme choices are applied automatically.

    Applications can choose to use a color from the palette rather than the specified bold color.

Custom color scheme

You can use custom colors for the text and background in Terminal:

  1. Open Edit ▸ Preferences.

  2. Your current profile is selected in the sidebar. If you wish to edit a different profile, click on its name.

  3. Select Colors.

  4. Make sure that Use colors from system theme is unchecked. Select Custom from the Built-in schemes drop-down list.

  5. Click on the color you would like to change.

  6. Choose your desired color from the color sample and click Select.

    You can choose the desired color in the following ways:

    • Input the hexadecimal color code in the input box.

    • Drag the slider on the left to adjust the colors and click on the desired color in the color selection area.

    Your changes will be saved automatically.

You may also alter a color when you have chosen a built-in scheme by clicking on the color sample block. Once changed, your selection in the built-in scheme menu will change to Custom.

Traditionally terminal emulators offered a 16 color palette, this is what you can alter here. Terminal supports an extended set of 256 colors, but the additional 240 colors cannot be edited here.

Terminal even offers direct access to over 16 million colors, this is called “true color” mode.

If the changes you make to the palette do not seem to have an effect, presumably the contents you see consist of such extended palette colors or true colors, rather than the 16 base colors.