Business Intelligence Tools

How do you set colors in Spotfire without reverting back to defaults?

  • Would you like to “set” colors to be applied to all visualizations in a DXP?
  • Have you set the colors for each unique value in a column but find the colors get reset to the default?
  • Are you using property controls to change the Color By variable?

This post explains how to set colors in Spotfire for unique values in a column so that they do not change or reset to the default.

Problems with Visualization Color

It’s another week of solving problems.  This week, a user contacted me with a problem involving resetting color in a Spotfire pie chart visualization.  More specifically, he would set the colors for each unique value, and they were fine until he used a drop down property control to change the Color By variable.  Anytime he changed the Color By column, the colors reset to the default.  He needed the visualization to retain his color choices.


Fortunately, there is a simple solution that involves creating a document color scheme and attaching it to column property.  Here are the detailed steps.

  1. Right-click on the visualization and go to Properties -> Colors.
  2. Set the colors as desired.
  3. Click on the “pages” button shown below -> Save As -> Document Color Scheme.
  4. Go to Edit -> Column Properties -> Find the column of data (in this case, Material Type).
  5. In the Properties tab, find the DefaultCategoricalColorScheme (if you were working with a continuous column of data, the choice would be DefaultContinuousColorSchme) property, and click Edit. 
  6. Enter the name of the color scheme.  You may have to close the dialog and return in order to see the Value populate.

With this modification, the unique values in this particular column of data will be consistent throughout the DXP.  It will apply in the pie chart, as well as the bar chart.

Spotfire Version

I used Spotfire 7.12 to create this content.


4 thoughts on “How do you set colors in Spotfire without reverting back to defaults?

  1. Antony Butterworth Reply

    Very late to the party here. I have successfully set the colors but when a user selects to Color By my 12 unique value field it always defaults to continuous coloring not categorical, can this be changed?

    • Julie Sebby Post authorReply

      Did you go to Properties, Color By, Settings and set the column as categorical? Is it flipping it after you’ve adjusted that setting?

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