Is there a preference to change, so to have the rectangle selection tool, in Inkscape, to behave "a-la-Illustrator", i.e. to select objects/paths/etc even if the selection rectangle intersect part of them, without completely framing them?

2 Answers 2


Yes, however it's not a setting in the preferences, but a button in the toolbar when using the select-tool. It's the fourth button from the left, called 'Toggle selection box to select all touched objects' when hovering over it.

'Toggle selection box to select all touched objects' button highlighted in the toolbar inside Inkscape.

  • Glad to see this is an option now. Requested this years ago.
    – Asme Just
    Jul 5, 2023 at 20:22

Inkscape has another way of selecting things which might interest you. In my opinion, it's actually better than using the tool like in Illustrator. It's very good for making tricky selections.

  1. Hold down Alt, as you use the Select tool S

  2. Draw with it like a pen, and it will select every object it touches.

An example

enter image description here

  • thanks a lot! very useful!
    – Fabio
    Mar 10, 2023 at 12:50
  • 1
    @Fabio . . . note Illustrator has something similar to this, but it's a separate tool, the Lasso Tool (Q).
    – Billy Kerr
    Mar 10, 2023 at 12:58

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