I just updated my iMac to Mojave, and am still trying to setup my preferences.

I tried dark mode, but did not like it (half of me apps seem to ignore it anyway).

I switched to light mode, but this too has problems. The File Save dialog shows a list of Directories and existing files, but the latter are very light grey, almost indistinguishable from the background.

enter image description here

I have searched the Preferences menu, but can't seem to find any setting to set normal contrast levels like in High Sierra.

  • Go to System Preferences > Displays > Color tab and try some alternate Display profiles. You can also hit the Calibrate... button and gain more control of how the screen looks. If you're on a laptop, toggle the Automatically adjust brightness checkbox to see if that helps.
    – IconDaemon
    Commented May 1, 2019 at 11:21
  • The program chooses how to interpret default files. If you use TextEdit to save a file in this o location, what image does that app show of the folder? (Basically which application and version and which build/version of macOS generated your screen image and problematic situation?:
    – bmike
    Commented May 23, 2020 at 14:10

1 Answer 1


Can you supply a screenshot? Greyed-out files in file dialogs usually mean that those items can't be selected. For an Open dialog, greyed files are ones than can't be opened by the app.

For a Save dialog, it's normal for existing files to be greyed out, because you're not going to select them, you're creating a new file. (However, you can actually select them to inherit their filename.)

There should be no difference in Light Mode between Mojave and previous versions of MacOS.

There are settings in System Preferences > Accessibility > Display that increase the contrast and Reduce Transparency, which you may have previously used.


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