While using Photoshop I often need to drag layers from one document to another, but when I have many documents opened this gets a little tricky.

The cause of this issue is the way that Photoshop hides the tabs when there are too many of them for the size of my window / screen.

To be more specific, the problem I'm experiencing because of that, is not being able to simply drag layers from one document to another as I normally would (By simply dragging them onto the other tab) when they are too distant from each other on the tab menu.

I tried to find a few alternative ways of doing so, and would love to know if you know how to perform any of them, or alternatively find another solution for this.

  1. Disable overflowing tabs, and having all of them displayed no matter how big my window is (While cutting the document titles a little bit of course).
  2. Switch between tabs as usual ( By pressing CTRL + Tab) while dragging layers.
  3. Somehow scroll the tab menu?

I guess another way would be to constantly re-order the tabs, or simply give up on them, but I'll keep these options last.

Thanks in advance!


  • 3
    Do you have to use drag and drop? You could simple right-click the layer -> duplicate layer, the pop-up window gives you the option to select where the duplicated layer should go ...
    – MoritzLost
    Commented Sep 28, 2014 at 11:28
  • I'm surprised I missed this feature, thank you for this! but I would still love to know if it's possible via drag and drop as I think it's way more convenient. besides, it looks silly that ctrl + tab decides not to work when dragging layers, why break the possibly most intuitive way to do this?
    – Don
    Commented Sep 28, 2014 at 12:37
  • I use Doco, which allows you to drag selected layers. It's slightly different to what you are after, but it's shown in that video. It's worth noting that it doesn't really bring anything to the table that isn't somehow already available in Photoshop.
    – Joonas
    Commented Sep 28, 2014 at 14:05
  • @Joonas I see, well that seems to work, but I probably wouldn't find use of it as it's quite big, bulky and I don't like big interfaces covering the most of my screen when I work. I usually hide them all, so I made my own extension that does what I wanted, simply duplicating layers to other tabs in a single click. Sad that Adobe couldn't handle this themselves.. I'll share with you guys if anyone's interested.
    – Don
    Commented Sep 30, 2014 at 13:13
  • 1
    Yea. When they implemented tabs, this was probably one of the first things I tried... and it didn't work. Many versions later, it's still not a thing. --- I did have actions and scripts to handle stuff like that, but I fell in love with that big and bulky interface that Doco has :) --- I'd highly recommend that you answer the questions yourself, since you have a solution. It's good for you, good for the site and good for anyone bumping into this same issue.
    – Joonas
    Commented Sep 30, 2014 at 14:07

2 Answers 2


I've stumbled upon this problem many times. My only work-around was dragging the tab beside or in close proximity to the tab I wanted to exchange layers with.

At times I would pop the tab outside of the list, go to the tab I want to drag the layer to, and just pop that tab (or should I say window) right beside it.

I hope that helps.


It's so annoying that these tabs don't auto scroll.

My solution would be the same as above. Either reorder your tabs. Or click and drag a tab out of the tab line. So its just a pop up window.

Once your done either drag it back into line individually or go to window...arrange consolidate all tabs

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