How to Schedule Dark Mode on Windows 11


Windows 11 has a nice dark mode, but just like Windows 10, it can’t be scheduled to turn on automatically at night. Fortunately, there is a way to fix this problem without downloading additional software.

This has always been a weird omission in Windows 10 and 11. The Night Light feature, which also aims to make the screen easier on your eyes, has this capability. For some reason Microsoft doesn’t include it for dark and light modes. Let’s fix this.

RELATED: How to Enable Nightlight on Windows 11

Schedule dark mode

We’ll be using a built-in Windows app called “Task Scheduler” to automate enabling dark mode. Unfortunately, we’ll have to create separate tasks for dark and light modes, but the process will be the same for both.

First, open Task Scheduler from the Start menu by searching for “Task Scheduler”.

Open "Task scheduler" from the Start menu.

On the top bar, click Action > Create Task.

Give the task a name like “switch_dark_theme” and select “Run only when user is logged in” and “Do not store password”.

Give the task a name.

Now switch to the “Triggers” tab and click on the “New” button.

Select “Daily” from the sidebar. We can now enter a time you want dark mode to be on. Make sure the “Recur Every” option is set to “1 days” and click “OK”.

Enter a time for dark mode to start.

Next, switch to the “Actions” tab and click on the “New” button. We will create two actions, one for the applications theme and one for the system theme.

To create a "New" stock.

For actions, we want to “Start a program”. Next, paste the following lines into the “Program/Script” and “Add arguments” boxes and click “OK”.

Program/Script: register

Add arguments: add HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionThemesPersonalize /v AppsUseLightTheme /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f

Repeat the same step to create a second action, this time using the line below for the “Add arguments” box:

add HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionThemesPersonalize /v SystemUsesLightTheme /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

(The first action sets your apps to use a dark theme by toggling “AppsUseLightTheme”. The second task sets the operating system, such as the taskbar and other elements, to use a dark theme by toggling ” SystemUsesLightTheme”.)

Go to the “Settings” tab. Select the option “Run the task as soon as possible after a scheduled startup fails” and check “If the task fails, restart each option” and set it to 1 minute and 3 restart attempts.

Configure task settings.

Finally, go to the “Conditions” tab and uncheck the “Start the task only if the computer is on mains” option. This ensures that the task runs even if you are using a laptop on battery power. Click OK.”

Uncheck "Start the task only if the computer is powered by AC power."

The task will now be listed in the “Task Scheduler Library” folder. To try it right now, you can right click on it and select “Run”.

Programming the lighting mode

Everything we’ve done so far is scheduled when dark mode turns on, but that’s not very useful if it never turns off. We also need to schedule the activation of light mode, which is exactly the same process.

To program the light mode, you can follow the same steps as above. However, there are some things you will need to do differently.

First, give the task a different name, such as “switch_light_theme”.

Give the task a name.

Of course, you’ll also want to choose a different time to activate light mode. Again, make sure the “Repeat every” option is set to “1 day”.

Choose light mode time.

The most important thing for the Light Mode task is to use the right argument for each of the actions. After typing ” reg in the program/script box, copy and paste the following line into the “Add arguments” box.

 add HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionThemesPersonalize /v AppsUseLightTheme /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

And then for the second action, you will need to use the following line for the “Add arguments” box.

add HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionThemesPersonalize /v SystemUsesLightTheme /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

(As before, the first action sets your apps to use a light theme by toggling “AppsUseLightTheme”. The second task sets the operating system, such as the taskbar and other elements, to use a light theme by toggling “SystemUsesLightTheme”.)

The rest of the process is the same as Dark Mode, so repeat the same steps as above.

How to change scheduled times

Since these are static times, you may want to adjust them for different times of the year. To do this, double-click the tasks in the “Task Scheduler Library” folder to open the Properties window. Go to the “Triggers” tab and click on the “Edit” button, then enter your new time. Click “OK” twice to save the changes.

Adjust the task time.

You can now do the same for the second task.

How to delete scheduled tasks

Don’t want to use tasks anymore? Return to the “Task Scheduler Library” folder and right-click on each task. Select “Disable” or “Remove” from the menu. “Disable” will keep the task, but just stop it from running.

Warning: Do not disable, delete or modify any existing Windows system tasks. You could cause serious problems with your PC. We can safely delete tasks that we have created ourselves.

"Disable" Where "Wipe off" task.


That’s all we can say about it! Unfortunately, Microsoft doesn’t make this as simple as it does on macOS, iPhone, and Android. The functionality is clearly there, they just haven’t decided to make it easily accessible. Till date, it is the best integrated solution.

RELATED: How to Enable Dark Mode at Sunset on Android

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