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WordPress Administration Panel Confusion – Changing the wpadmin.css

I have several blogs and I was going crazy figuring out which one was which in my Firefox browser. With the three tone blue Administration Panels in WordPress, I couldn’t tell which blog I was in without looking at the title. I work very fast and I needed something faster to catch my eye to let me know which WordPress blog was which.

Traditional 3 toned blue WordPress Administration Panel for WordPress 2.0

I can’t change the colors of the Administration Panels in WordPress.com, but I can with my full versions of WordPress.

I edited the /wp-admin/wp-admin.css style sheet to change the colors in the three headings in the top of the Administration Panels. Extracted from the stylesheet, the three sections are:

#wphead {
	background: #14568a;
	padding: .8em 19em .8em 2em;
	color: #c3def1;
}
#adminmenu {
	background: #6da6d1;
	border-top: 3px solid #448abd;
	margin: 0;
	padding: .2em .2em .2em 2em;
}
#submenu {
	background: #0d324f;
	border-bottom: none;
	margin: 0;
	padding: 3px 2em 0 3em;
}

Search for each ID to find the appropriate section.

I simply changed the background colors to something more interesting to me, colors associated with my web page design.

For Taking Your Camera on the Road, I wanted more nature colors, like those on my site. I used:

#wphead {
	background: #006600;
	padding: .8em 19em .8em 2em;
	color: #c3def1;
}
#adminmenu {
	background: #4D9900;
	border-top: 3px solid #448abd;
	margin: 0;
	padding: .2em .2em .2em 2em;
}
#submenu {
	background: #993300;
	border-bottom: none;
	margin: 0;
	padding: 3px 2em 0 3em;
}

Changed colors in my WordPress Administration Panels

Changing the stylesheet is not a major change to the programming core, and easily fixed if you upgrade again and the wpadmin.css file is replaced. But it certainly improves my usability of my different blogs, helping to quickly recognize which one I’m working in as I switch back and forth.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen

6 Comments

  1. blagermeister
    Posted April 13, 2006 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    I can’t convey tone in this comment, so take it like a curious question and not a slam.

    Do you really like the WP admin area that much? Single-blog authors have enough reason to switch to an offline blog client. Someone like you who’s writing multiple almost must. One interface, and you select which blog any particular post goes to. I haven’t played with any of them extensively (read “beyond the free trial period”), but I imagine some must have multi-blog capabilities.

  2. Posted April 13, 2006 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    There are multi-blog WordPress Plugins which permit one administrative interface for multiple blogs. I don’t use them. I have several free WordPress.com blogs, which now have gotten a little friendlier in managing, and a couple of full version WordPress blogs. So far, I haven’t felt a need to try one of those plugins, but I might in the future.

    With Firefox, I just keep the tabs open constantly with the Administration Panels of each blog and just click a tab to go from one or the other. Simple, and brainless. I don’t have to worry about sending a post to the wrong site or mixing things up. When I’m working on one, I am not distracted by the other, something I battle with all the time.

    As for “liking the WP admin area”, it isn’t a matter of like. If I want to change it on my full version WordPress site, I change it. And I have. But with WordPress.com, I can’t do anything about it except complain and make recommendations (suggestions) to the developers on how to improve it. It is what it is. There is plenty I’d love to change here, but that’s the price you pay for free. ;-)

    All these capabilities with how to administrate, design, and develop your WordPress blog adds more fun to the process. That’s why I stay with WordPress. It gives me choices.

  3. Posted April 13, 2006 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    WOW, I never even thought of that, CSS is CSS after all. Thx for the idea.

  4. Posted April 16, 2006 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

    Taking your idea one step further, I matched the header backgrounds with the bg images on my various installs. Thanks!

  5. Posted August 31, 2007 at 11:36 pm | Permalink

    That’s awesome. Thank you.

  6. Posted December 16, 2007 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    yes bro, good advice, i had the same problem too.

    thank you


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  3. […] manually by changing the /wp-admin/wp-admin.css stylesheet with changes ranging from complex to simple colors, or by using a WordPress Plugin called an Admin Theme Plugin. Some just change the look of the […]

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