How to Fix Highlighted Text Not Visible in gedit in Dark Mode

Highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode

Highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode?

If you’ve been using Linux for a while, chances are you may have come across the gedit text editor. It is the default text editor for most GNOME desktop environments. The plethora of advanced features along with the easy-to-understand interface makes gedit one of the best open-source text editors available for desktops.

Most Linux distributions allow for a customizable interface, providing a variety of themes to choose from. Although the default options are good for most people, some prefer to work with dark mode, as it is easy on the eyes, cuts back on the blue light exposure, and helps save battery life if you’re working on a laptop.

Working with dark mode may be aesthetically pleasing for most people. However, a problem occurs when using dark mode with the gedit text editor. 

Gedit highlights the line that your cursor points at. This feature makes it easier to keep track of what line of text you’re on. However, it can prove to be a hindrance if you’re using dark mode. This is because the highlight and the text color are indistinguishable in dark mode, making the text unreadable.

Highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode

Simply put, the highlighted text is not visible in gedit in dark mode. If we described the issue you’re facing then fret not, as we will guide you on how you can resolve this issue until the developers apply a fix to this bug in the upcoming patches.

There are ways to get around this, like selecting the text to make it readable. It doesn’t get rid of the highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode, rather it highlights text in a different color. Although it solves the problem, it’s a long and tedious process that requires you to select every line you want to work on.

Another way to get around is by disabling dark mode. This does solve the problem, however, leaving the comfort of dark mode doesn’t seem like a worthy compromise. 

The methods we will discuss in this article are meant to work as a fix without having to do something tedious or leaving dark mode. That isn’t to say there won’t be any trade-offs in the methods. 

Nevertheless, these methods will resolve your problem and you’ll be using gedit in dark mode in no time.

So without further ado, let’s begin!

1. Disabling the Highlight.

The first method involves disabling the highlight itself. This means that you’re disabling the highlight that covers the line your cursor is pointing at. 

Disabling the highlight will fix the ‘highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode’ issue, but the trade-off here is that you’ll have no visual marker(except for the cursor) to know which line you’re working on.

If you find this to be a valid trade-off, then follow these steps:

  1. Firstly, open the command terminal by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T.
  2. Once it opens, type the following command in the terminal.
$ gedit
gedit

This will open the gedit text editor.

  1. Next, in the text editor window click on the menu icon next to the save button.
save button in text editor

This will open the menu as shown in the image above.

  1. Now search for Preferences in the menu and select it. This will open a Preferences window.
preferences
  1. In the view tab, locate “Highlight current line” in the Highlighting section. Uncheck the checkbox to disable this option.
highlight current line

This will disable the highlight over the text, making the text readable as shown in the image below.

disabled highlight over text in gedit

As mentioned earlier, this makes the text readable but ends up getting rid of the highlight. Meaning you can only make use of the cursor to see which line you’re on. If getting rid of the highlight doesn’t seem like a good trade-off, you can try our second method.

2. Changing the Color Theme of the Editor.

The highlight is a useful feature of the gedit text editor and working without it may not be for everyone. If you want to use gedit in dark mode without removing the highlight, this method is for you.

This method involves changing the color theme of the text editor. The text color will differ from the highlight color by slightly altering the colors, making the text easily readable.

The trade-off in this method is that the colors won’t automatically switch if you shift your system appearance to light mode.

If you wish to implement this method, then follow these steps.

  1. Firstly, open the command terminal by pressing Ctrl + Alt + T.
  2. Once it opens, type the following command in the terminal.
$ gedit
gedit

This will open the gedit text editor.

  1. Next, in the text editor window click on the menu icon next to the save button.
Highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode

This will open the menu, as shown in the image above.

  1. Now search for Preferences in the menu and select it. This will open a Preferences window.
preferences
  1. Next, navigate to the Font & Colors tab.
fonts and colors
  1. Under the Color Scheme section, choose a different color scheme, for example, Cobalt, Oblivion, etc.
  2. Click on the close button. You should see that the highlight color has changed, and the text is now readable.
Highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode

As we mentioned earlier, applying this fix means that you would have to manually switch the color scheme should you prefer to switch to light mode on your system. This seems like a better trade-off in general when compared to disabling the highlight feature. 

This method allows you to have the best of both worlds i.e., using the gedit text editor in dark mode without getting rid of the highlight feature.

Although there are other text editors available for Linux distributions that use GNOME, we prefer to use gedit in most cases when we need to create or edit some text files. The features provided by this text editor seem to overshadow the minor inconvenience it causes. 

Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that there’s no inconvenience, which is why we wrote this article. This error should be resolved soon within the upcoming GNOME updates. Until then we can use the methods in this guide to resolve our issues.

If you want to see the text editor in action and reduce your Linux shutdown time in the process, you can check out this article.

We hope this guide helped you fix highlighted text not visible in gedit in dark mode. With the errors resolved and everything out of the way, we wish you a pleasant experience when using the text editor in your journey to master Linux.

If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂

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