Saturday, December 28, 2019

FMSuite and custom themes issues with SDR#

You may have noticed that the colors in my plugins go “wonky” and become hard to read after a custom color theme is applied.  The problem is the change in SDR# that allows custom color schemes.  My plugins are written to adhere to the Windows standard to use your desktop color scheme, while SDR# recently released a feature that permits custom color themes that use custom controls and work in that app only.  Selecting a custom theme in this SDR# implementation causes the Microsoft controls in my plugins to get confused about which colors to use.  I would have to rewrite significant portions of all of my plugins to create custom controls and attempt to adhere to the new theming model in SDR#.  Unfortunately, SDR# only tells me whether the selected custom theme is “light” or “dark” and gives me no information regarding the specific colors in selected theme, so there’s no way currently that I can match SDR#’s selected color theme.  I might be able to ferret out the actual colors "under the covers" and use them, but this would require legally questionable software techniques and I simply won’t do that.

I must also make the observation that the SDR# change took all plugin makers by surprise and that since SDR# provides no guidance to the selected themes’ colors all plugins had a problem similar to mine when the change was made.

Adjusting to this change in SDR# would mean a significant outlay of time and/or money for me.   Most plugin makers appear to have fewer than 3 screens in their plugins; FMSuite has 17 windows/screens in the plugins, not counting the standalone apps "The Pluginator" and "Data Tools".  Frequency Manager & Scanner alone has 8 windows/screens.

As a result of these changes and the significant effort to work around them, I have decided to not update the plugins to use SDR# custom themes.  I will continue to make bug fixes when necessary, and will continue to accept suggestions for features in future versions.

My workaround suggestion is to use only “light” themes in SDR#; this should make the plugins’ text more visible.

And one more note:  I understand and respect the decisions made by the SDR# team.  They owe plugin makers nothing.  It’s their world and we simply play in it.

Thank you for using my plugins, and I hope you understand that this issue is a side effect of changes made by SDR#.



  1. Hi, how can I edit the database manually?

  2. Hi MaxTheRed. There are several free alternatives for editing the database directly. I use SQLite Expert Personal, the URL is:

    Thanks for using my software.