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How to change the default yellow highlight color (in Writer)? [closed]

asked 2016-11-10 09:40:38 +0200

cipricus gravatar image

By default the highlight color is yellow and that can be manually changed of course, but the change is temporary: in a new document or even after reopening the same document, the default changes to yellow.

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The default color is important in that it is the one that can be used to highlight text by selecting text and just clicking that button without using the drop-down menu to select between different colors.

I would like to have that button use a different color that could be then selected with just one click.

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Closed for the following reason the question is answered, right answer was accepted by Alex Kemp
close date 2020-09-15 16:58:08.911245

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answered 2016-11-10 16:27:09 +0200

pierre-yves samyn gravatar image

updated 2016-11-16 15:19:04 +0200


Sorry, AFAIK it is not possible to change the default yellow highlight color.

I personally only use styles. In this case I create a character style (applied with a double click or a keyboard shortcut). You can then define your template as the default.


Note: as I said before, the following steps do not allow you to change the default color of the button. They allow you to create a character style that can be applied by double-clicking in the styles window or by a keyboard shortcut


  • Create a new document
  • Create character style:
    • Display the Character Styles in the sidebar
    • Right-Click Default StyleNewOrganizer tab: give a name▸Highlighting tab: select you color.
  • Create as template:
    • FileTemplatesSave as Template. With recent version (e.g. 5.2.2) you can tick Set as Default Template
    • With older versions FileTemplatesManage▸select your template and set as default
  • Create Shortcut
    • ToolsCustomizeKeyboard tab▸select the shortcut▸CategoryStyles: select your style▸check you have selected Writer (not LibreOffice)▸Click Modify


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That template should NOT be set as default: the idea is not to change the default highlight setting inside the document body (which is 'no fill') but the default yellow selection of the highlight button.

cipricus gravatar imagecipricus ( 2016-11-16 16:24:07 +0200 )edit

Although what asks the question is not possible in the present versions of the program, this is a good workaround: creating a style+template with the effect that selected and new text is highlighted with a certain color, then triggering that style (and that effect) with a shortcut. But, as said above, that should not be the default template: and the default template should have a shortcut key too.

cipricus gravatar imagecipricus ( 2016-11-16 16:36:24 +0200 )edit
  1. Setting the template as the default template does not change the text but makes the style available in all new documents that will be created with this template.
  2. I have already indicated twice that the proposed workaround does not allow to change the default color of the button.
pierre-yves samyn gravatar imagepierre-yves samyn ( 2016-11-16 16:41:48 +0200 )edit

Now the style is applied to the whole paragraph. Is there a way to apply it only to new and selected text?

cipricus gravatar imagecipricus ( 2016-11-16 16:46:02 +0200 )edit

once a template is set as default all new documents start with that one. in my case, setting that template/style to be triggered with a key is very useful, because I want to highlight text gray with that shortcut. but I don't need new documents to highlight the text gray by default

cipricus gravatar imagecipricus ( 2016-11-16 16:51:38 +0200 )edit

It's difficult to answer you and make yourself understood because you chain the comments without waiting for answers. We are on a forum, not on a chat.

For: the style is applied to the whole paragraph, I suppose you have created a Paragraph style and not a Character style.

For: I don't need new documents to highlight the text gray by default, thank you to read carefully my comment n ° 1

pierre-yves samyn gravatar imagepierre-yves samyn ( 2016-11-16 16:57:22 +0200 )edit

I very much appreciate your responsiveness and competence more than I did at first glance, due to my limited experience . Your answer & comments are now sufficient to make me fix the rest of the details that should not clutter these comments. Thanks again and all the best to you!

cipricus gravatar imagecipricus ( 2016-11-17 01:07:46 +0200 )edit

answered 2016-11-11 10:16:17 +0200

floris v gravatar image

I couldn't find anything on this. You can contact the developers, either send a mail to their mailing list to ask if it's possible, or post an enhancement request on the bug tracker,

On a side note: be careful with changing default colors that people are used to. If you share your files with your preferred highlighting color with people who can't stand that color or are used to yellow, those people may be put off-track by the different color and think it's for something completely different.

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I see the enhancement as the ability for the user to change the default highlight color, a change similar to that of theme and icons or of toolbar items, one that should not affect the documents themselves, shared or not.

cipricus gravatar imagecipricus ( 2016-11-16 16:06:50 +0200 )edit

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Asked: 2016-11-10 09:40:38 +0200

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Last updated: Nov 16 '16