Accepted answer

You can try to activate Toggle Mark Occurrences with icon on Toolbar: Eclipse Toolbar


  1. Click the word and hold until a popup appears as shown in the figure.
  2. On the popup, there is a little right arrow, after clicking it, a new icon shows up.
  3. Click that link to open preferences.
  4. Once in preferences, select C/C++ Occurrences (it will be language specific) and select Include in next/previous navigation with Text as Highlighted.

This should enable the feature of highlighting all occurences of the selected word in the opened file.


If you go into the window-prefrences, select the language you want/are working with. Select the editor under this specific language and then there is a mark occurrences there that has some options. Where it says keep marks when the selection changes, for me this was checked. When I unchecked it the system started highlighting correctly.


For folks who are using a dark background with light font colors, you may want to check out the highlight color in Preferences -> General -> Editors -> Text Editor -> Annotations. Mine was defaulted to black, which does not stand out on a black background.


Glance does not work anymore, but in current Eclipse Versions (Eclipse 2020) you can highlight any word by selecting the word and pressing CTRL+F. The word is now highlighted. In the small search input, you can toggle 'match whole word' and case sensitivity.


I'd like to complement the other answers - which work in Java editor only or require plugins - with a way to highlight all occurrences of any text (not just a word or identifier) in any editor of text files (e.g. SQL, CSV, HTML, TXT, Java, etc ...).

There is a standard/built in command called Find Text in File (under Window -> Preferences -> Keys)

enter image description here

By default it has no keyboard shortcut assigned. Simply give it a shortcut (e.g. Ctrl+Alt+S) select some text (not necessarily a word) and it will find and highlight all occurrences of that selected text.

It can also be invoked from the menu as Search -> Text -> File.
Enjoy 🙂


For Eclipse Mars:

Window --> Preferences --> Check (Mark occurrences of the selected element in the current file.)

As shown if figure:

enter image description here



Java> Editor > Mark Occurrences

Uncheck "Keep Marks when the section changes" then click Ok

Restart Eclipse.

This work for me.


There are two ways to highlight all occurences. First is using Eclipse options, which is not very reliable, because in many versions of Eclipse it is not supported. Second is using a plugin called Glance which is available in Eclipse marketplace. This is supereasy and effective.

First Method

In the toolbar, there is button for Toggling Mark Occurrences. So, once you selected the text/word whose occurences you wish to highlight, then click this toggle button.

enter image description here

Let's say this step doesn't work for you. Then, Follow this step: Goto: Window ==> Preferences ==> General ==> Editors ==> Text Editors ==> Annotations ==> On right Annotations types box: Occurrences ==> Select all check boxes. enter image description here

You can also go to Window ==> Preferences ==> Java ==> Editor==> Mark Occurrences ==> Check all the checkboxes. enter image description here

Restart Eclipse and check if highlighting works. If still doesn't work, then Go to Second Method

Second Method From Eclipse marketplace, install Glance. Once installed, restart Eclipse. Now select any word in your eclipse editor

  1. Move focus to component where you want to search
  2. Open Glance using Ctrl + Cmd + F shortcut on Mac or Ctrl + Alt + F on other platforms
  3. Enter text you want to search
  4. Use Enter or **Shift + Enter** to find next/previous match
  5. Close search box using Esc enter image description here You can also customize Glance from Window ==> Preferences ==> Glance


The standard "Mark Occurrences" functionality included in Eclipse that everyone recommends only highlights identifiers in editors of whatever language. For example, it won't highlight int in C editors, and it won't help at all in the Console pane.

So if you want to highlight ALL occurrences on ANY word in ANY Eclipse pane (kinda like Notepad++ does), try the Glance plug-in for Eclipse.

As of November 2017 Glance works for Eclipse Neon and Oxygen. There was a period of time in which Neon was unsupported, and a fork appeared, but it seems unnecessary now (and abandoned).


Find the Preferences under Window,

main window - tab

In General > Editors > Text Editors > Annotations(1)

(5) is to select the color and press apply.

Preferences window


Check out options that are checked in Preferences -> Java -> Editor -> Mark occurrences. Then restart Eclipse.


In General > Editors > Text Editors > Annotations

enter image description here


Preferences --> Java --> Editor --> Mark Occurrences

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