Aptana Studio 2 IDE Dark Color Theme

Posted on October 30, 2009

Aptana Studio is currently my IDE of choice. It's fast, flexible and built on Eclipse. Using it day in and day out, I've decided to create a custom, light on dark color theme.

Supported Aptana Editors

Custom color themes have been created for all of the current Aptana Studio editors, including:

  • CSS
  • HTML
  • Javascript
  • jSON
  • PHP
  • PHP Doc
  • PHP Smarty
  • PHP Smarty Config
  • ScriptDoc
  • XML

Sample Screens

[nggallery id=3]

Recommended Font

I've been using the Anonymous Pro font, which is available as a free download. Click here for more info.

Installation Instructions

Rather than retype everything, if you need assistance in installing Aptana color themes, there is a great tutorial online written by John Rockefeller. Click here to read it.

[sociallocker id=”5853″] Download on Github [/sociallocker]

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  • Joakim

    Looks nice! I’ve just switched to it. The only problem I find with it is when I put my cursor on a variable and it is highlighted. I think the highlighted text should change to a darker color to contrast the new text background. I’ve got an example:

    First pic: Dark theme with no highlight
    Second pic: Dark theme with highlight
    Third pic: Default theme with highlight

    • NightLion

      I think I know what you’re talking about. This is a tough one because Aptana 1.5’s colors behave differently on a MAC and PC. I reported a bug to Aptana where the mac version wouldn’t even let certain colors be applied to items like highlighting and block selecting. In any event, I might release two separate versions, one for Mac and one for PC. Keep you posted.

    • NightLion

      FYI, Aptana 2.02 now supports the old PHP 1.1 module. I recently post about it in the Web section, along with directions on how to set it up.

  • Michael

    Thanks for the great theme!

    Any news on porting this to Aptana 2.0?

    • NightLion

      I’ve actually been working with Aptana 1.5 because I really don’t like PDT. Once of the things I need to figure out is how to properly import/export eclipse color schemes. I will keep you posted.

  • Jacob

    I’ll keep an eye on this page, looking forward to when/if you release a theme for 2.0!

  • Thank you so much for putting this together. I’ve been at it all week and felt like my eyes were going to drop out of my head and roll away. Your color scheme and font suggestion saved my life and my marriage. Thank you Thank you.

    It’s a shame that there is no way to skin the whole app. The edit area is now an island of goodness in a sea of ugly.

    PS. I’m sticking with 1.5 too. tried to debug PHP with 2.0 and just could not get it to work. What a shame Aptana is moving in a bad direction.

  • GREAT!!! Thanks!

  • Frederick

    I would love a fix for PC users, since variable highlighting makes this unusable for me.

  • I’m having problem with html and javascript syntax highlighting with files that are saved as .php. It’s kind of like a php template.

  • Bruce


    I figured this out today for Aptana 2.0.3, so if you haven’t fixed it yet here is the solution:
    – Goto Window > Preferences > General > Editors > Text Editors > Annotations

    The two fields for variable highlighting to change is “Write Occurrences” and “Read Occurrences”. I changed the values to #4D4D4D, however you can change it to a color that suits you best.

    Hope that helps. 🙂

  • Daren

    These themes are great! Do you know of one that has been created for Ruby?

  • Kim

    wow! thank you so much.
    i have been looking for this…..^^

  • Problem with all dark themes on Eclipse so far:

    onclick=”switchForm_{ELEMENT_NAME}();return false;”

    i.e. any text inside quotes will stay black.. which sucks for dark themes. Eclipse doesn’t seem to allow one to change the basic default colour for text inside edit windows.

  • Hey, thanks a lot for the color theme!

  • thank you again!

  • Hi,
    I got the .col files. My only question is how do I apply it to the php editor? I don’t see an import button. I’m using Aptana 3.0b.

  • Are there any other installation instructions? The one provided seems it is removed. 🙁

    And big thanks for great theme! This is much more eye candy and white is also burning my eyes out.

  • Craige


    I liked the theme so I used the colours and setup Eclipse to use the same theme. For future posts however, you should include a colour palate for those wishing to do the same. It’s hard to use a colour picker to get an exact match on small lettering.


    • Good point. I’ve been working on a scheme for Aptana 3, but it’s going slowly as the software still has a fair amount of bugs. Once that’s ready, I will release the color scheme chart with it.

  • Pedro Garcia

    Excelente job, pal! Thanks so much for releasing it 🙂

  • Hi NightLion, this is a great scheme. I thought you might be interested to add your theme to the new http://www.eclipsecolorthemes.org. You will have support for a lot editors out of the box. And maybe you can help to add the aptana specific ones too.

  • dendog572000

    thanks for the color settings! that makes things a lot easier..

  • achu

    not working in aptana 3.0

  • bob_dobbalina

    I can’t wait till the Aptana 3.0 version is ready. I’ll be working in 2.0 till then. Big thanks for these. I have them setup in both my installations of of Aptana 2.0 and Flash Builder.

    • Just a note to everyone… I’ve been working on the Aptana 3 style for a few weeks now. The problem s that there is a known bug in the color picker for mac. Every time you select a color, it arbitrarily changes the saturation and hue. Its a real pain. It should be done soon though.

  • marco

    Hi, do you have already this theme for aptana 3.0 ?
    Thank you

  • Hi. Just wanted to let you all know that a new theme for Aptana 3 is now available. Enjoy!


  • d21anthony

    Hello NightLion! I love this theme. I was using a similar dark theme for dreamweaver years ago and then found this theme in Eclipse. I prefer the lighter colors in this theme compared to your newer version. If there is any possibilty of you porting this one to Aptana Studio 3 as well you would be doing the world a great service! Hopefully Santa will hear me on this request too. Cheers!

  • Omar Velez

    theme “.col” not found 🙁

  • Omar Velez

    where is the theme for aptana 2?

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