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I just upgraded from CS6 2018 to 2020. Now whenever I select a white background and press delete, a fill popup shows up instead of making the image transparent. How do I change this?

Example

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I found out that the image I was editing was a jpg. Converting it to a .png made the background back to transparent.

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  • This gets around the issue, but it's a roundabout way to do it. Images open in their initial state. Like when you open a jpg in PS, it will have a background layer, because jpg has no transparency, but this doesn't mean much when you're opening it in PS. I'll get back to that. Png on the other hand has transparency and will open without a background layer. Background layer is never transparent. The proper solution to the problem is to convert the background layer into a normal layer by for example double clicking it. Then it will behave the same as a png when it's first opened. – Joonas Feb 28 at 7:56
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Photoshop inserts background color to the deleted area in 2 situations:

1) Your image has color mode which hasn't transparency. RGB and CMYK have it. Set the mode to RGB by applying Image > Mode > RGB

2) You have only a background. Open the layers panel to see the situation. Remove the lock icon or double click the layer in the layers panel to get a possibility to convert the background to a layer which can have transparent areas

Photoshop opens JPGs as "background only". I bet most of the people who want to make edits to a JPG in Photoshop either duplicate the background to get a layer or convert it to a layer.

You can flatten a multilayer image to "background only" by applying Layers > Flatten image. By doing it you throw away all those editing and recomposing possibilities which layered structure provides.

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