BUG: Screen Readers fail to read content of Visual Studio tool windows


Screen reading software like "JAWS for Windows", "System Access", fail to provide Text to Speech feedback, for tool windows in the Visual Studio IDE. Windows and tabs with themed scrollbars may not be read by some accessibility software.


This is a known issue with the Visual Studio 2012 IDE. The Visual Studio 2012 scrollbars are themed by default, to ensure scrollbar styles do not inherit from the system but match the new Visual Studio UI themes. The underlying technology used for theming scrollbars may cause problems from some accessibility tools. 


Users affected by this issue can work around it by running the following command from a Windows Command Prompt:

reg ADD HKCU\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\11.0\General /v SuppressThemedScrollbars /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f
This command will add a registry key value that will turn off themed scrollbars in Visual Studio.

To remove the above workaround and re-enable Themed Scrollbars, run the following command:

reg delete HKCU\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\11.0\General /v SuppressThemedScrollbars /f

Note, Visual Studio will need to be restarted after running either of the above commands.

Article ID: 2854367 - Last Review: Jun 14, 2013 - Revision: 1

Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Web, Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows 8, Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Desktop, Microsoft Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows Phone, Microsoft Visual Studio Premium 2012, Microsoft Visual Studio Professional 2012, Microsoft Visual Studio Ultimate 2012