Fonts and colors in Eclipse

Eclipse uses the fonts and colors provided by the operating system as much as possible. On Windows the platform color and font settings are found on the General > Colors and Fonts preference page. The font used by most widgets in Eclipse is the one set in the Message Box settings of the properties. However, operating systems do not provide enough colors to handle all of the extra information that colors and fonts provide in Eclipse.


There are 4 main fonts in use by the Eclipse platform. They are:

Banner Font
Used in PDE editors, welcome pages and in the title area of many wizards. For instance the New Project wizard uses this font for the top title,
Header Font
Used as a section heading. For instance the Welcome page for the Eclipse Platform uses this font for the top title,
Text Font
Used in text editors.
Dialog Font
Used in dialogs.

These fonts can be set via the command link General > Appearance > Colors and Fonts preference page. As well as these 4 fonts there are several other secondary font settings. These default to the text font. They can be found on the Colors and Fonts preference page:


Eclipse uses colors as an information enhancement in many places. Whenever possible the operating system color settings are used, but in cases where the operating system settings are not enough, Eclipse defines other colors. All of these colors can be adjusted via the following preference pages:

Windows onlyAccessibility and the Windows Color Dialog

For color selection, Eclipse uses a dialog provided by the operating system. On windows, the color selection dialog does not respond properly to assistive technology. When you first get into the dialog, focus is on one of the basic colors, but the dialog provides no indication of this through assistive technology. You can select colors in Eclipse with this dialog in the following way:

  1. Select to customize the color of something in Eclipse, for example the color of Error Text in your Workbench Colors and Fonts Basic preferences.
  2. In the color selection dialog, tab twice to go from the Basic Color matrix to the Define Custom Colors button and press Enter.
  3. You can now enter the basic colors using an HSL or RGB specification according to the following definitions. See the Windows Color Dialog Reference for a tables and values for these colors.
Accessibility features in Eclipse
Navigating the user interface by using the keyboard Keys
Windows Color Dialog Reference