Enable dark theme in SSMS (SQL Server Management Studio)

SSMS came default with two themes which is the Blue and Light. The dark theme is also available in SQL Server management studio 2016, 17, and the latest 18 versio, but just not officially supported.

To begin, open any of your favourite text editor in Administrator mode, then look for the following configuration file ssms.pkgundef under the following locations:

SSMS 2016

C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\130\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio

SSMS 17

C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\140\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio

SSMS 18

C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio 18\Common7\IDE

Once the file is opened, search for the section “Remove Dark Theme”, then add “//” (without quotation marks) at the beginning of the first line like shown below, and save the file

NOTE: Any upgrade of SSMS will reset the configuration file. Remember to retweak it after the upgrade. Or perhaps you could write a PS script to ease you from retweaking everytime.

SSMS 2016

powershell -Command "(gc 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\130\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio\ssms.pkgundef') -replace '\[\`$RootKey\`$\\Themes\\{1ded0138-47ce-435e-84ef-9ec1f439b749}\]', '//[`$RootKey`$\Themes\{1ded0138-47ce-435e-84ef-9ec1f439b749}]' | Out-File 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\130\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio\ssms.pkgundef'"
SSMS 17

powershell -Command "(gc 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\140\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio\ssms.pkgundef') -replace '\[\`$RootKey\`$\\Themes\\{1ded0138-47ce-435e-84ef-9ec1f439b749}\]', '//[`$RootKey`$\Themes\{1ded0138-47ce-435e-84ef-9ec1f439b749}]' | Out-File 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\140\Tools\Binn\ManagementStudio\ssms.pkgundef'"
SSMS 18

powershell -Command "(gc 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio 18\Common7\IDE\ssms.pkgundef') -replace '\[\`$RootKey\`$\\Themes\\{1ded0138-47ce-435e-84ef-9ec1f439b749}\]', '//[`$RootKey`$\Themes\{1ded0138-47ce-435e-84ef-9ec1f439b749}]' | Out-File 'C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio 18\Common7\IDE\ssms.pkgundef'"
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