I often run commands in cmd.exe that have pretty colors in their output, which is great. Unfortunately, sometimes they die in the middle, or I have to kill them, and then the console window itself gets stuck in (say) red text on black background, which is awkward.

How do I reset the text color to the default?

On a unix terminal, I can type reset -- I'm looking for the cmd.exe equivalent of that.

3 Answers 3


Color 07 will set it to the default scheme that cmd.exe uses.

Color attributes are specified by TWO hex digits -- the first corresponds to the background; the second the foreground. Each digit can be any of the following values:

0 = Black       8 = Gray
1 = Blue        9 = Light Blue
2 = Green       A = Light Green
3 = Aqua        B = Light Aqua
4 = Red         C = Light Red
5 = Purple      D = Light Purple
6 = Yellow      E = Light Yellow
7 = White       F = Bright White
  • All 3 answers so far are very helpful, but color 07 (and not just color) worked here, so I'll mark this one.
    – Ken
    Jun 30, 2010 at 22:32
  • color has on my environment the same effect as color 75 (purple on light gray), a combination that I set as the default in console's settings (and that I would like to remove now). color 07 turns my console into a scary white on red.
    – xverges
    Jan 6, 2014 at 14:36
  • Disappointing that color 00 doesn't work...
    – tim_hutton
    Dec 18, 2015 at 13:38
  • Can't believe I've been quitting the console for years every time one of my tools went awry, when I could have just done this... :(
    – Robbie Dee
    Sep 23, 2022 at 8:53

Try Color

Use color /? to see all the commands

COLOR If no argument is given, this command restores the color to what it was when CMD.EXE started. This value either comes from the current console window, the /T command line switch or from the DefaultColor registry value.

  • 2
    +1 for quoting the docs instead of linking to not even official information :-)
    – Joey
    Jun 30, 2010 at 21:49

Well according to: http://commandwindows.com/vista-commands.htm

You just type COLOR.

Worked for me just now...

  • Dang, beat me to it.
    – Moab
    Jun 30, 2010 at 21:26

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