I'm using CS6 on a laptop, usually hooked up to an external monitor. In that setup, the monitor is my primary screen and the latop's is my secondary. Since I like some real estate in my palettes, I tend to stretch the Layers panel to full-screen height on my primary view.

When I start working with just te laptop, the Layers palette is too tall for my screen - Photoshop remembers the size and location of my palettes from when I was working on a larger screen. I can't resize the palette short of resetting the workspace to a standard. Annoying thing is that the buttons at the bottom of the palette are beyond my view now.

Is there a way of resizing such a palette without resetting the entire workspace?

6 Answers 6


Approach this from the other direction. When you have both monitors up, take the time to set up your palettes so that they're perfect on the laptop screen, and save that as Laptop Workspace. Then when you switch to just the laptop, load that workspace, so you haven't lost any of your personal settings but you can see all the palettes.

  • 3
    What to do when you only have the one screen and the panel is way off vertically?
    – Gabriel R.
    Jun 16, 2013 at 20:36
  • @GabrielR. You could try changing the resolution of the monitor to something ridiculous (2048px, for example) which would allow you to grab the bottom of the palette even if you can barely read anything. Otherwise you may have to reset to defaults. Jun 17, 2013 at 0:49
  • 1
    Mac OS won't let you do that on the main laptop display.
    – Gabriel R.
    Jun 17, 2013 at 7:43
  • 1
    Kinda sucks if you left your big screen at the office though.
    – N. Virgo
    May 20, 2015 at 13:42

Docking the panels, as in this answer, was the right starting point for me. However, even though docking the panel DID make the panel fit the window height, undocking it seemed to either "remember" its previous height, or just added more height based on the additional chrome (the extra UI elements) of the dock UI itself.

These are the steps that finally got the panels in place on my screen:

  1. On my dual-monitor view, dock the palette up against the application UI (so drag until you get a long vertical blue bar) on the monitor that was the larger of the two monitors.

  2. Undock the panel. It now fills the screen and goes slightly over the bottom of the screen.

  3. Minimize the panel by clicking the "Collapse to Icons" in the dock UI - it's the << button right next to the x close icon

  4. This removed the dock UI chrome and thus shortened the panel by about 80 pixels, which was then sufficiently short to manually drag the bottom resize handle.

  5. Bring over to the smaller monitor, and then dock or leave it wherever you had it last.


The best way to do this is to dock the panels to the side of the screen.

  1. Drag the panel group title bar towards the right or left edge of the screen.
  2. As you approach the edge, slow down and wait for the vertical snap guide (my own term) to appear.
  3. Drop the panel gruop.

The panel group is now docked, and will resize automatically to fit vertically.


I changed the scaling of my monitor so that everything was smaller on screen, resized the panel, the set the display resolution back to where it was after.


This has been driving me nuts for ages. I think I just found a quick, easy solution.

Drag the palette that's too long into another palette group that isn't. For example, my Layers palette was going off the bottom of the screen, so I dragged it into my Character/Paragraph palette group, and right back out again. Fixed!

I had to do that with all a few more palettes and then regroup as desired, but it took five seconds.

Don't forget to save your workspace (of course Adobe calls this action NEW workspace) so you can easily switch to this view later.

  • When I drag the Layers panel next to character and paragraph, then back where I want it next to stroke and pathfinder, it takes its previous height and clips out of the screen again :( Apr 19 at 22:18

After dragging a panel group from a small-ish monitor over to my retina Macbook and back, this issue bugged the crap out of me for several minutes. I ended up having to pull the panel group apart in order to bring the bottom of the panel back into view. I then re-assembled everything and saved a new workspace for my home setup. I use a much higher resolution monitor as my second display at work, which is why I think this issue initially occurred for me.

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