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Preferences, which you can access in Full Photo Edit mode, are all contained in a dialog box that’s organized into nine panes. By default, when you open the Preferences dialog box, you first see the General pane.

To open the Preferences dialog box, choose Edit→Preferences→General. (Or choose Photoshop Elements→Preferences→General on the Macintosh.) Alternatively, press Ctrl+K (Command+K on the Macintosh). Using either method opens the Preferences dialog box to the General pane.


Here you see items on both the left and right sides of the dialog box that are common to all preferences panes. Here’s a quick introduction to what these items are and how they work:

  • Panes list. Elements lists all the different panes along the left side of the Preferences dialog box. Click an item in the list to make the respective pane open on the right side of the dialog box. (In earlier versions of Elements, you selected panes from a drop-down menu.)

  • OK. Click OK to accept any changes made in any pane and dismiss the Preferences dialog box.

  • Cancel/Reset. Click Cancel to return to the same settings as when you opened a pane and to dismiss the dialog box. If you hold down the Alt (Option on the Macintosh) key, the Cancel button changes to Reset, and clicking that button returns you to the same settings as when you opened the dialog box.

  • Prev. Switch to the previous pane.

  • Next. Switch to the next pane. You can also press Ctrl+(1 through 9 keys) to jump to another pane, or press Command+(1 through 9 keys) on the Macintosh.

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