How to make Visual Studio 2012 look (almost) the same as 2010

If you’re like me, you HATE HATE HATE the look of VS 2012. It’s not only ugly; it’s unergonomic.

So naturally, a number of people have worked to make VS 2012 look like 2010. VS 2010’s look, IMNSHO, was a lot clearer and developer-friendlier.

So here’s a list of steps that have been tested and work :

0. Close both VS 2012 and VS 2010

1. If you haven’t already, install VS 2012 Update 2 or later (here)

2. With Update 2 or later, a new theme called “Blue” is available alongside “Dark” (the default) and “Light”. Select this one (you can find it in Tools -> Options -> Environment -> General) and click OK.

VS2012_options

3. Download the “Visual Studio Icon Patcher” from MS CodePlex (here)

4. Unzip it in a new folder

5. Open Visual Studio Command Prompt (use “Run as an Administrator”). In the command prompt, enter the following commands :

cd whatever-folder-you-have-unzipped-the-file-in

VSIP.exe

You’re now in the VSIP prompt. Continue typing (obviously you have to hit enter after each line –but you knew that already) :

backup -v=2012

extract

inject

menus

x

Done ! The outcome looks like this :

VS2012_look2010

Important note : The commands in step #5 assume that you have both VS 2012 and 2010 installed on your machine. If you don’t, you need to a) “extract” from a machine with VS 2010 installed b) copy the folder created (it’s called Images, and it’s placed under the new folder in which you unzipped Visual Studio Icon Patcher) and c) “inject” it in the target machine (i.e. the dev PC with VS 2012).

Welcome !

Hi everybody !

I’m Jim Andrakakis. I’m a senior software engineer from Greece; with roots from Crete, raised mostly in Athens and since 2012 living in Switzerland, near Zürich. I’ve been coding since I was ten, and will probably continue until I’ve malloc()’d a block in the Great Heap In The Sky. I’m an incurable coffee addict, a finance and economics hobbyist, a firearm enthusiast, a cryptography aficionado(*) and I’m perpetually tormented by 3 beautiful women 😊

As my friends know, my official first name is not Jim, it’s Dimitrios (usually used as “Dimitris” in Greece). Jim is the equivalent in English. There’s a small backstory to why I introduce myself this way, but it’s not important.

Also: why “dandraka”? Well obviously it’s an abbreviation (first letter of first name + part the surname) but more importantly it’s a small piece of personal history. It was the username I got when I worked, briefly, for the Muon Spectrometer in the ATLAS experiment of CERN. When I complained that I was used from other systems to a slightly different username, “dandrak”, a brilliant physist I met there suggested that that would sound like a washing machine model -so I guess I dodged that bullet 😊

So that’s my new blog, which I started after Jux announced that they would be shutting down. Real pity; it was a great platform, I loved it.

From now on I’ll be posting here my random thoughts, recipes, code and what-have-you.

But if you stop reading now and go to a beach, nobody will blame you

Enjoy !

(*) please don’t confuse cryptography with “crypto”, i.e. anything to do with bitcoin and crypto-“currencies”. For what it’s worth (which is not much) I believe that the blockchain (the mathematical concept that underpins most cryptocurrencies) has the potential to facilitate some useful applications. But caught in the mania of bitcoin, which is an almost ridiculous concept, it has been blown completely out of proportion. Thus any effort to apply blockchain in a useful way is invariably doomed, due to it being so unbelievably overhyped.