Changing the Windows 7 Desktop theme for better viewing

Blog Post created by geonetadmin on Nov 3, 2009
Bringing back the Classic (view)

Hi, my name is Phillip, and I am a Server Support Analyst with ESRI’s Eastern Support Services. Windows 7 has arrived…and with it comes many dandy new features and advancements. One of our challenges at ESRI Support Services is to be able to provide support options for our customers who are using our software with new operating systems, such as Windows 7.


Recently, we received feedback that it can be difficult to work within ArcMap while using Windows 7’s Basic Desktop theme. The default theme color makes it difficult to read the file names within ArcMap (see below):

To change the Desktop theme setting:

    1. Right-click on the Desktop and select Personalize.

    1. Select Windows Classic from the Basic and High Contrast Themes or another theme of your choice (We here at ESRI Support Services find the Classic view to be the easiest to see and read.):
  1. Close the Window.

Now when you reopen ArcMap, it is easier to read the file names and everything else. Enjoy using the ArcGIS Desktop products with the latest Microsoft offering of Windows 7. Thanks!!!

-Phillip W., Server Support Analyst, ESRI Support Services