Add App Mode Context Menu in Windows 10

As you may already know, Windows 10 comes with two color schemes for Store apps. The default one is light, there is also a darker one. You can add a special context menu to switch between them quickly. Here is how.

To apply the dark theme to your Store apps, you can use Settings. It can be enabled under Personalization - Colors. See the following screenshot:

App Mode In Settings Colors Windows 10

This option is available starting with Windows 10 "Anniversary Update" version 1607.

With a simple Registry tweak, you can add a special context menu to the Desktop and enable the desired app theme with a single click.

App Mode Context Menu Small Windows 10

To add the App Mode context menu in Windows 10, do the following.

  1. Download the following Registry files: Download Registry Files.
  2. Extract the ZIP archive you've downloaded to any desired location. You can put them right on the Desktop.
  3. Double-click on the file "add-app-mode-context-menu.reg" and confirm the import operation.

This will add the following context menu to your desktop:

App Mode Context Menu Windows 10

To remove the context menu, double-click the provided file "remove-app-mode-context-menu.reg".

If you are running Windows 10 version 1903 or above, you can add the same context menu to quickly switch the default color mode for the taskbar, Action Center, and Settings.

Windows Mode Context Menu

For reference, see the following article:

Add Windows Mode Context Menu in Windows 10 (Light or Dark Theme)

Alternatively, you can use Winaero Tweaker. The appropriate option is located under Context Menu\App Mode. Enable it to add the menu.

Tweaker App Mode Context Menu

You can download Winaero Tweaker from here:

Download Winaero Tweaker

If you are curious to see the tweak's contents, here is how it looks.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DesktopBackground\Shell\AppMode]
"MUIVerb"="App mode"
"Icon"="themecpl.dll,-1"
"Position"="Top"
"SubCommands"=""

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DesktopBackground\Shell\AppMode\shell\01Light]
"MUIVerb"="Light"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DesktopBackground\Shell\AppMode\shell\01Light\command]
@="reg add HKCU\\SOFTWARE\\Microsoft\\Windows\\CurrentVersion\\Themes\\Personalize /v AppsUseLightTheme /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DesktopBackground\Shell\AppMode\shell\02Dark]
"MUIVerb"="Dark"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DesktopBackground\Shell\AppMode\shell\02Dark\command]
@="reg add HKCU\\SOFTWARE\\Microsoft\\Windows\\CurrentVersion\\Themes\\Personalize /v AppsUseLightTheme /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f"

You can copy it to a new Notepad document and modify according your preferences. For example, you can customize the position of the menu. Try to change the line "Position"="Top" to Middle or Bottom. After you made modifications, save the file as a *.REG file.

In Notepad, press Ctrl + S or execute the File - Save item in the menu. This will open the Save dialog.

There, type or copy-paste the following name "AppMode.reg" including quotes. Double quotes are important to ensure that the file will get the "*.reg" extension and not *.reg.txt. You can save the file to any desired location, for example, you can put it in your Desktop folder.

To remove the menu manually, open Registry Editor and delete the key

HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\DesktopBackground\Shell\AppMode

Delete Appmode Menu

This context menu uses the tweak mentioned in the following article: Enable the dark theme for Settings and Modern apps in Windows 10. It modifies the AppsUseLightTheme 32-bit DWORD parameter and changes its value from 0 (default Light mode) to 1 to enable the dark mode.

If you are running an older build of Windows 10, or you are a user of Winaero Tweaker, you can use one of its options. In Winaero Tweaker, I've implemented the ability to turn on the dark theme for Settings and apps with just two checkboxes. Play with the options in Appearance -> Dark Color Scheme and see if the result is usable for you.

winaero tweaker dark system theme That's it.

3 thoughts on “Add App Mode Context Menu in Windows 10

  1. K. K. VinayKumar

    In your sreenshot you have shown the icons for “Light” & “Dark” options. But in your application you haven’t provided any icons for them. How to put an icon for them?

    Reply
    1. Sergey Tkachenko Post author

      I will fix this in the next version of tweaker. Should come out soon.

      Reply
      1. K. K. VinayKumar

        Thanks.

        Reply

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