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Is it possible to "globally" substitute a terminal color somehow in OSX? In particular, I find that the dark blue is really hard on the eyes as demonstrated here:


I'd love to be able to kick this color to the curb. It seems to be used throughout however: whether it's vim, or ls, or simply the prompt, I want it replaced with something lighter.

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Terminal has preferences like any other application. Try

Terminal --> Window Settings --> Color

They have some predefined themes and options for picking your own.

To edit from the command line, try this tutorial here (

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The issue with this is when I ssh into my development VM, I inherit it's terminal colors for things such as listings. In a sense, I want to remap that dark blue color so regardless of where it's coming from, I get something like turquoise instead. Might be asking for the impossible ;) – Koobz Jun 27 '11 at 16:43
I edited the answer to include a link to instructions for doing the same thing from the command line. The next time you ssh in, you can edit the .bashrc file following those instructions and problem solved. – Yitzchak Jun 27 '11 at 16:53
@Yitzchak, Koobz is on Mac OS X. The default terminal doesn't let the user set his own colors apart from "bold", "background", "foreground" and "cursor". – romainl Jun 28 '11 at 11:51
@romainl However you can (at least on my father's old G5 running tiger) create a new profile and make it the default. – Yitzchak Jun 28 '11 at 14:40
@Yitzchak, Yes you can create a profile — I did countless times — but you are still limited : there is no way in to actually change the value of DarkMagenta or Cyan or any other default color which is what Koobz wants. Whatever profile you use, DarkGreenwill always be same color unless you use one of the two third party extensions available. On this screenshot are 4 default profile and my custom profile all showing the same (customized) 16 colors. – romainl Jun 30 '11 at 7:24

When using ssh the server only sends color codes, not values. The appearance of Gray50 or Red are entirely dependant of your local settings therefore you have to tweak's color settings to your taste.

There are two SIMBL plugins that allow you to edit all of's 16 colors:

With either one or the other your colorscheme of choice will be consistent when using vim locally or via ssh. Follow Ytzchak's link to have a similar prompt on the distant server and on your Mac. Maybe with different colors to know where you are.

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