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Adobe Photoshop CS4: Disabling document tabs

Photoshop IconTabbed applications work great in many instances. They revolutionized the way many of us browse the web, and for the most part I like them in my editors. One place I don’t have time for them is in Photoshop, and in Adobe Photosohp CS4 tabbed viewing of documents is the default setting. Usually when I’m working in Photoshop I have several documents open at once. I may be comparing designs, sampling colours or any other number of tasks that require multiple documents displaying at the same time. It’s one of the reasons designers usually have large displays and sometimes multiple screens. If you are like me, you don’t like the default setting, but it’s a snap to return Photoshop to it’s old self.

Adobe Photoshop CS4 InterfaceGo to your Photoshop preferences (Cmd-K / Ctrl-K). Then in the left hand side select “Interface“. Scan down and uncheck “Open Documents as Tabs“. Click “OK” and things should be back to normal.

3 Comments to “Adobe Photoshop CS4: Disabling document tabs”

  • Laura

    The new setting can be annoying, yes, but potentially, it could save time as well, if you use them correctly.

    A good tutorial is here:

  • Ian Hoar

    Interesting post Laura, I didn’t know CS4 had that menu. I still will leave mine disabled. If you have a Mac I think Exposé is more intuitive and powerful. I use it throughout the day when working in any of my apps to achieve a similar workflow. Thanks for the link.


  • Tony Sansevero

    Why they made this the default in photoshop I’ll never know. This is yet another instance of fixing something that ain’t broke.
    Unfortunately even after disabling, it goes back to the original annoying setting if you restart your computer so you’ll have to do it every time you restart.