When it comes to customisation options, Windows 10 offers users a considerable number of options. After the update of the operating system in October 2018, users were offered the long-awaited functionality of the dark mode. However, many users have had problems because the dark theme of Windows 10’s File Explorer does not work for them.

You can use the file explorer to browse the files on your computer. If you’re a night owl that likes to work late at night, a dark mode for the Explorer can give you less fatigue in front of your eyes. It also increases battery life, which means you can work longer on a single charge.

What to do if the dark theme in Windows 10 File Explorer does not work

For many users, the dark theme in the file explorer does not work properly. There may be several reasons for this. If you are facing the same problem, you can follow these solutions to solve it.

1. Outputs and inputs

Sometimes you cannot change the default theme of the file explorer because there are errors in your computer system. If your computer is not working properly, you can try disconnecting and then reconnecting to see if the problem is resolved.

Go to the Start option on the taskbar and select Exit.

If you are logged out, you can log in again by clicking on the Login button on the Login screen. If you have activated the login password, you must enter the login password. After registration, try changing the subject. Check if the design of the dark file explorer in Windows 10 does not work.

2. Windows 10 Update

Updating your Windows 10 operating system remains one of the most common ways to solve this problem. In the case of the File Explorer dark theme, make sure that the Windows 10 October 2018 update (version 1809) is installed on your PC.

You may think that this version will be installed automatically on your PC because you have installed function updates several times in the last two years. But it’s not. Microsoft had to remove this update from the version because many users reported boot problems after installation.

To check if the update is installed, type Winver into the Start menu and press Enter.

alt=winver opening width=551 height=480 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png />Enter Winver in start menu

In the About Windows dialog box, the operating system version must be 1809; if it is lower, you are still using an older update and the dark theme in Windows Explorer may not be compatible with your system.

alt=View window version 1 width=455 height=417 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117198_92_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png />Check the system version in the About Windows dialog box.

To install the latest updates, go to the Settings application and tap Updates and Security.

alt=Click Upgrade and Safety 7 width=640 height=342 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117199_168_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ez= />Click Upgrade and Safety

In the left pane, select Windows Security and click Check for Updates.

alt=Check for Updates 5 width=640 height=373 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117200_261_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ez= /> Click Check for Updates

This allows you to install the latest version of Windows if it is not on your computer. If you do not see this update on your computer, all you can do is wait until it is available.

3. Disabling configuration applications

There are several applications that allow users to change the default Windows user interface. If you have applied a third party theme in Windows, this may be the reason why the dark theme in Windows 10 File Explorer does not work as expected.

If you have installed such applications or themes, remove them and try to apply the dark theme again in File Explorer. In the Search bar of the Start Menu, enter applications and functions and remove these applications from your PC. After uninstalling the installation application in Windows, make sure that the problem of the black theme in Windows is solved correctly.

4. Dark mode re-use

Sometimes there are a number of bugs in a dark theme that can cause various problems. You can temporarily return to the light theme and try resetting the dark mode of the file explorer.

To start, right-click an empty area on the desktop and select Customize Settings. You can also open the personalization window from the Start menu.

alt=Click to adjust 2 widths=487 height=347 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117201_402_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117201_402_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ez= />Click to adjust

Now go to the Colors tab on the left side and select a color from the right panel. Then, under Select Default Application Mode, select the backlight mode.

Then restart your computer, return to the same window and select dark mode.

The explorer should display a dark window after performing these steps via the Colors menu.

5. Applying the default theme of Windows

If the explorer’s dark mode displays color consistency or invisible text, you can try to return to the default Windows theme and reapply the dark theme.

First go to the customization window and select the Themes tab in the left pane. Then click on the default theme of Windows 10 and apply dark mode again. Check if the dark theme in Windows 10 File Explorer does not work and if it does not work properly.

6. Reboot Windows file explorer

If you unsuccessfully try to apply a dark theme, restart Windows Explorer and they will try to apply it again. First open the Job Manager settings by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc.

Once the Task Manager window opens, search for Windows Explorer in the list, right-click on it, and select Restart.

alt=restart Windows Explorer 7 width=579 height=480 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117201_182_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png /> restart Windows Explorer

After a few minutes, the exploration process starts again and you can try to switch to a custom theme. Check if the dark theme in Windows 10 File Explorer does not work or if it is correct.

7. Start SFC and DISMScan

System File Scanning is used to identify damaged system files on your computer and replace them with newer versions. You can perform an SFC scan by following this short guide. If the check of the system file is not carried out correctly or if the problem cannot be solved, proceed with the check of the DISM.

In the administrator mode, open the command line console, and type the following command:


alt=Mileage dism scan 1 width=630 height=298 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117202_722_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png />Mileage DISM scan

The scan will take about 20 minutes. Be careful not to disturb.

8. Graphics and sound card driver Update

All device drivers are usually updated when the operating system is updated. However, if this is not the case with your PC, you can try to update the drivers for the graphics card and the sound card manually or with special tools.

Follow this quick guide to understand and complete the process of updating videos, sound cards and other types of drivers. Check if the dark theme in Windows 10 File Explorer does not work or if everything is ok after updating the drivers.

9. Change of registration

If the dark theme in Windows 10 File Explorer does not work, you can adjust the registry step by step to solve the problem. However, be sure to save the current settings of the Registry Editor so that you can reload them if something goes wrong.

To start, press Windows + R to open the Run command, type Regedit into the address bar and click Run. You can also open the registry by typing the registry editor into the search bar.

To make a backup, open the File menu in the Registry Editor window, click Export and save it in the location of your choice.

alt= click export width=640 elevation=310 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117203_249_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ez= />Click export to save the registry editor settings.

Now take the next road:


Right-click on AppsUseLightTheme in the right hand box and select Edit.

Then type 0 in the data field and click OK.

Close the registry editor window to see if the dark mode of the file explorer is working. If not, open the Commands window in Admin mode.

Type the next command and press the Enter key.

REG ADD HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionThemesPersonalize /v AppsUseLightTheme/t REG_DWORD/d 0

Once the task is successfully completed, try switching from the light to the dark theme mode.

10. Tool removal2 Tool removal

Mach2 is a special tool that gives users access to the internal structure of Windows 10. The Insider editions contain many new features that have not yet been released and are still being tested.

The theme of the Dark Explorer was released in October 2018. If you installed it with Mach2 or a similar tool, this may be the reason why the dark theme does not work. You must uninstall the dark theme or use the command line console to reactivate the dark theme.

First go to the Mach2 folder and type cmd.exe in the address bar. This will open the command window.

Now type the next command and press the Enter key:

Permitted car2 10397285

If the method is successful, you will receive an OK-message. Then restart the computer and set the default application mode to dark, as previously described in Solution 5 of this article.

11. Create new account

If the Windows 10 File Explorer dark theme does not work properly, it is probably due to a corrupted Windows 10 user account. Since there is no easy way to fix a corrupt Microsoft user account, you can try to create a new one and use the ‘dark themes’ function.

Open the Settings application from the Start menu or press Windows + I. Then select Accounts.

alt=Select accounts 4 width=640 height=331 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117204_155_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ez= />Click on the account.

In the next window on the left, select Family and Others and click on Add more people to this PC in the right window.

alt=Add someone else to this PC 3 width=595 height=480 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117205_895_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png /> Click on Add someone else to this PC.

You will then be asked to enter your details. Click, I have no information about this person’s registration. Then select Add a user without a Microsoft account.

alt=click I have no credentials 2 width=556 height=480 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117205_471_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117205_471_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png data-ez= />click I have no credentials from this person

Now enter your email address as your username and click Next.

alt=Create account 1 width=423 height=366 data-ezsrc=http://server.digimetriq.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/1608117206_860_How-To-Fix-Windows-10-File-Explorer-Dark-Theme-Not.png /> Enter your email address and click Next.

After you have created a new account, log in via this account and try to apply the dark theme. Creating a new user account is ideally the last resort, as all of the above methods are intended to solve the original account problem.


A dark theme for Windows Explorer has its advantages, as we saw at the beginning of this article. The dark theme not only saves energy and reduces eye strain, but also improves legibility, which is a great advantage when working in a poorly lit environment.

If your theme in Windows 10 File Explorer gets dark and does not work as expected, these solutions will help you solve the problem. Make sure you follow the solutions in the order in which they are mentioned in the article. It is also important to note that the use of dark mode in Windows is a matter of choice, not limitation.

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