EDIT: See my comment below before investing too much time.

I've read a ton of related questions on SE and have had no success. Everyone elses' problems seem to be solved by changing the terminal to 256 colors, or configuring Vim to use 256 colors.

Here is what I have done:

I've copied the blackboard.vim color scheme into ~/.vim/colors


Other color schemes render properly, it's only this one.

:echo &t_Co returns 256 in Vim

In bash echo $TERM returns xterm-256color

My ~/.vimrc is

  1 syntax on
  2 set nowrap
  3 set number
  4 set nocp
  6 " Expand tabs to 4 spaces
  7 set tabstop=4
  8 set shiftwidth=4
  9 set expandtab
 11 " Color scheme with black tweaked from xoria256
 12 " colo sublime
 14 " Color scheme I like a bit better :)
 15 colo blackboard

This is what it is supposed to look like: Correct

This is what mine looks like: Mine

But my other color scheme renders properly: Other color scheme

  • 1
    I might have just found the answer, but I'd still like to see if anyone else has any ideas. The theme's download page mentions Only works in gui mode for now and I'm running from the terminal. So... it's probably a matter of finding a version that is compatible or making one. Feb 1, 2013 at 3:54

2 Answers 2


Exactly. This is a GUI scheme.

You could try the CSApprox plugin (there are a couple of others but that's the only one I can think of at the moment) to convert it to work in a terminal.

However, tis colorscheme is quite short so you could customize it by hand. Adding cterm[fg|bg] with a correct value to every line that contains gui[fg|bg] should be enough and not take more than 10 minutes:

highlight Normal guifg=White guibg=#0B1022 ctermfg=15 ctermbg=232

See this chart for the available colors.

  • Thanks, when I get some time I think I will try this. If I can make something work I'll probably contact one of the existing theme creators on github and see if they want to merge. Feb 1, 2013 at 20:06

If your terminal support high-color mode as yours, you can use the CSApprox plugin to automatically convert a GUI-only colorscheme for the console.

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