Turn Off the Uppercase Menu in Visual Studio 2012


I’ve been seeing a ton of posts lately on this feature so thought I would share here as well.  I also like to give credit where credit is due so I did a search and it looks like the earliest mention of this ability is by Richard Banks in his post 6\1\2012 here:  http://www.richard-banks.org/2012/06/how-to-prevent-visual-studio-2012-all.html  If anyone knows of an earlier one done by someone else let me know but this looks like the first mention of it.  If I were a betting man I would say he most likely used Process Explorer to make this discovery which is my favorite tool for finding things like this.

 

 

Mixed Case is Your Friend

Okay so you really, really don’t like the Uppercase menu in VS2012 because you feel like it is shouting at you:

image

 

 

You would rather go back to mixed case for your menu:

image

 

 

 

Not a problem! Let’s see how:

WARNING:  Making changes to the registry can cause unexpected results so do any changes at your own risk!

 

Manual Registry Change

Open the registry editor and go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\11.0\General\
(For Windows 8 Desktop Express go to HKCU\Software\Microsoft\WDExpress\11.0\General) //special thanks to msm8bball for the update
(For Web Express go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VSWDExpress\11.0\General)

  1. Create a new DWORD value called SuppressUppercaseConversion set to 1
    image
  2. Restart Visual Studio and you should see the change

NOTE: Watch your spelling if you are typing this manually.

 

 

PowerShell Goodness

If you like to “simplify” this a bit you can use PowerShell to run a nice script to make this happen.  However, if you haven’t used PowerShell before this may not be faster for you.

  1. Go to the Start button and type powershell and select the Windows PowerShell Entry:
    image
  2. In the PowerShell window copy the script below and paste it in then press Enter:
    Set-ItemProperty -Path HKCU:\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\11.0\General -Name SuppressUppercaseConversion -Type DWord -Value 1

    image

  3. Restart Visual Studio and enjoy!
Comments (41)

  1. William J. Steele says:

    Awesome!!!!  Thanks for posting this Zain.  (I can now rest peacfully without seeing yelling menus floating in my head!)

    Bill

  2. zainnab says:

    Yeah I know what you mean :)  

    To be fair the team has recognized this is an issue and has announced they will provide some mechanism to do this inside VS.  Most likely it will be a setting in Tools | Options somewhere.  Here are the exact words:

    "[…W]e will enable you to customize the casing, and we are exploring options for how to expose that choice. We will post again once we’ve settled on a final approach to be available in RTM."

    blogs.msdn.com/…/a-design-with-all-caps.aspx

    Z

  3. Bryan says:

    This NuGet package by Xavier Decoster makes it super-easy by permanently installs the Enable-AllCaps and Disable-AllCaps cmdlets into the NuGet PowerShell profile.

    nuget.org/…/VS2012.RemoveAllCaps

    There isn't a lot of documentation on it.  You'll need to open a solution (or else the package manager wont let you install the package.  Once it's installed the cmdlets work as advertised.  You do need to restart VS for it to take effect.

  4. Bernhard says:

    no, he used ProcessMonitor, as you can track your Registry there…

  5. zainnab says:

    Both great tools from Sysinternals :)

    technet.microsoft.com/…/bb545021

  6. jack says:

    just tried the PowerShell option – worked great, no problems – many thanks!

  7. Jerry T. says:

    This regedit was mentioned at Tech Ed this week but not the exact details…thanks for this!

  8. Richard Banks says:

    As far as I know I was the first to find it, and yes it was procmon that was my weapon of choice :-)

  9. zainnab says:

    You rock Richard! :)

    Great find man.

    Z

  10. kjopc says:

    The next UPPERCASE BATTLEGROUND will be in the OFFICE SUITE.

    This idiotic switch to UPPERCASE is obviously an obsession for someone high up in the MS food chain.

  11. sylvain says:

    I love it!

    @Zainnab: Why not make the mixed case the default and then if (a very few) people really want the uppercase mode, THEN they can go in menus and change it. And this grayness environment…. is so dull; the purple color in VS2010 was awesome, full of energy.  

  12. zainnab says:

    Hey Sylvain :)

    I'm not sure what the crack smo…er…design professionals were thinking when they made upper case the default but at least it can be changed.  Yeah I miss the color but, to be honest, it really does make me focus more on the middle (code) area more so I am kind of digging it now.

    Z

  13. Michail Gorsky says:

    There is even easier way without hacking registry.

    Just use this extension visualstudiogallery.msdn.microsoft.com/a83505c6-77b3-44a6-b53b-73d77cba84c8

    and you can have it all lower case, sentence case or even completely gone!

  14. zainnab says:

    Michail,

    VSCommands is a paid extension.  I normally don't let advertisements on this blog; however, I think the extension you mention has merit so I let it through this time.  While I personally haven't used the extension I like the feature set listed and encourage others to write extensions (paid or not) to strengthen the VS ecosystem.

    Z

  15. Jamie says:

    Great solution. It seems hard to imagine anything easier than adding a single key to the registry.

    I have looked at the intersection of the set of Visual Studio users, and the set of people who haven't altered their registry. It was an empty set. This is not hacking. This is using your computer.

  16. zainnab says:

    Hey Jamie,

    Good point :)

    Z

  17. yogeswaran k says:

    works perfectly :).. i like the power shell method… very easy

  18. Loïc Joly says:

    " I like the feature set listed and encourage others to write extensions (paid or not) to strengthen the VS ecosystem."

    One problem with this hope is that this ecosystem has a very exclusive entry ticket. At work, I have a paid version of visual Studio. I've had several ideas of extensions that would really improve my productivity. But I cannot develop them in my free time, since the express version is the only one I can afford at home, and it's not possible to develop (or use) extensions with this version. Therefore, I cannot give those extensions to the community, and help extend the ecosystem…

  19. jdadson@yahoo.com says:

    Alas.  I installed VC++ 2012 Express on Win 7 x64, and I do not see any of those keys in the registry.  Close though.  I found HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftVisualStudio11.0.  I created a new key called General, and put a DWORD in it called SuppressUppercaseConversion, and set it to 1. No joy. Menus are still MENUS.

  20. Jeremy says:

    Thank you.  That annoyed me to no end right away.  I couldn't even look at my Visual Studio IDE because it was just demanding attention so much.  Whoever decided to throw the style guides out the window needs to go out and find them…

  21. Ian Darke says:

    Thank you! IMHO this was a terrible design/aesthetic decision from Microsoft. I can't believe that not only they thought it was a good idea in the first place, but that they don't have a simple option in preferences to disable it.

    DEAR MICROSOFT, ALL CAPS IS FOR PEOPLE WITH ANGER MANAGEMENT ISSUES.

  22. Jack says:

    THANK YOUUUUUUUUUUU! THIS WAS JUST WHAT I WAS LOOOOOOOKIIIIIIIIIIING FOOOOOOOOOOR!!!

  23. enriquein says:

    Please note that under VS Express Web Developer edition the correct key is HKCU:SoftwareMicrosoftVWDExpress11.0General

  24. mjdl@outlook.com says:

    enriquein — Thanks for the correct key location! I was wondering why the blog's fix was not working on VS 2012 Express.

  25. Oliver Smith says:

    Someone at Microsoft told them "Make it more like Metro". Original Metro – as manifest on Windows Phone 7, which started the ball rolling – is a complete reboot of the UI around touch, everything is touchable and thus there is no need for chrome. This message got lost somewhere in the pipes and became "Metro is about removing chrome" and then "remove the chrome from our apps".

    It seems the VS team, like Hal, made a valiant effort. But on the rare occasion I open visual studio, I see the line of ::::::s in the window headers, someone's clever idea to mimic chrome without actually using chrome … burst into tears and laughter, and go back to VS2010.

    I've bought every version of this compiler all the way back to when it was SAS. I'm staying with 2010 until VS offers either a full metro or old-pre-metro style UI.

  26. zainnab says:

    Oliver,

    You can pretty much go back to the VS2010 look and feel using this post to fix the menus and then using the Blue color theme from the Visual Studio Color Theme Editor (details on usage in an article to be posted tomorrow 1/31/2013 on this blog):

    visualstudiogallery.msdn.microsoft.com/366ad100-0003-4c9a-81a8-337d4e7ace05

    Z

  27. angry dev says:

    If they left this crap along than we would have to waste time behind this mess

  28. zainnab says:

    Yeah I agree. Not sure who thought this would be a good idea but it defintiely makes my list of dumbest changes.

    Z

  29. Paddy says:

    Thanks Z, this was really useful. Is there a way of removing the upper case in Work Items? These are still showing as DETIALS, ANALYSIS… etc.

  30. zainnab says:

    Thanks Paddy :)

    I'm not aware of any way to change the case inside work items but hopefully the folks in charge of that feature will offer an option to change it.

    Z

  31. danielk1@wi.rr.com says:

    Perfect. Thank you.

  32. msm8bball says:

    The correct location for Visual Studio 2012 Windows Desktop Express is…

    HKCUSoftwareMicrosoftWDExpress11.0General

  33. zainnab says:

    Hey Msm8bball :)

    Is that confirmed? I don't use the express products ever so have no clue. If that is confirmed then I will change it in the post.

    Z

  34. John says:

    Is there a way (registry setting) to do this for 'All Users' rather than just the 'Current User' ?

  35. Ivan says:

    Thanks a lot, the very first thing I did after installing VS 2012. Can't believe someone suggested doing this in the first place…

  36. Joshua says:

    This tip works for Visual Studio 2013 Preview as well, simply change the 11.0 to 12.0.  Like this:

    Set-ItemProperty -Path HKCU:SoftwareMicrosoftVisualStudio12.0General -Name SuppressUppercaseConversion -Type DWord -Value 1

  37. zainnab says:

    Thanks Joshua :)

    I did an updated post for VS2013 here blogs.msdn.com/…/visual-studio-2013-turn-off-the-uppercase-menu.aspx but all you really have to do is increment the number by 1 in the reg hack so:

    VS2012 = 11

    VS2013 = 12

    VS2014 = 13

    VS2015 = 14

    and so on…

    Unless we mess with the version numbers this should be fairly consistent for a while.

    Z

  38. Michael Shewmaker says:

    I would really like to know if "ALL CAPS" was marketing's idea of a useful feature or if someone actually did some research that indicated a this was a good idea.  My bet is on a marketing and I do not have kind words for them.

  39. Sascha says:

    I can confirm msm8bball.

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWDExpress11.0General]

    "SuppressUppercaseConversion"=dword:00000001

    Was  the right key for me, too.

  40. zainnab says:

    cool thanks Sascha :)  

    I updated the post and gave attribution to msm8bball for the find.

    Z

  41. ABooth says:

    It works for VS 2013 too: HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftVisualStudio12.0General