Photoshop: When duplicating layer to artboard using (alt-drag) grabs locked border shape instead.

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  • Updated 2 years ago
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It seems when I try to use the (Alt-drag) to duplicate layer to other artboards and have a locked border shape above all layers, Photoshop always grabs the border shape even though it is locked.

I have replicated this problem with others in my department. For now hiding the border while working then showing it before export seems to work but a fix would be really helpful! 
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Andrew Crnl

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  • ambivalent

Posted 2 years ago

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Cristen Gillespie

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Could you post a screenshot of your layers panel? I can't seem to replicate the problem. I placed a layer at the top of the pile, with 3 artboards underneath. I have used a custom shape to add the border. I've painted a border. I've even added a mask. I can Opt/Alt-drag without any problem, with or without Auto Select Layer enabled, so I can't  guess why you can't. My layer with the border is fully transparent except where the border actually is—you don't say how your "border shape" was constructed???
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Andrew Crnl

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Sorry for the late response! I didn't see your post till now! 

I should specify, this happens when I alt-drag on the visual layers in the artboard ( not it the layers panel ).

If you'd like to know why I do this, my team builds out lots of banner sets and being able to drag layers around between artbaords visually is very helpful especially when you have 12 artboard sizes in one psd. 

Here is the screen grab you asked for. 

Thanks very much for your help! 
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Cristen Gillespie

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As best I can tell from the screenshot, you have 4 shape objects on Artboard 1, one locked, and want to move stuff to Artboard 2.  I can also see that your Artboard tool is active and no layer within the Artboard group is targeted.

I would expect that you can't duplicate and move a locked object, but that's not how it actually works. Locking that layer means it can't be duplicated or moved outside of its Artboard group. Plus, of course, you can't do much of anything besides duplicate/move it within its group. Please don't ask me to explain why that's the way the feature works. I can only guess someone asked for it to work like that.

Anyway, in order to move any other shape on Artboard 1 to another artboard, you have to be sure you've targeted the object you want to duplicate. If you have either the Move tool or the Artboard tool active and Auto-Select Layers enabled in the Options bar, just press Alt/Option and click on the object in the document window. If the Artboard tool is active, you'll temporarily get the Move tool, and that will target that object in the Layers panel. So will right-clicking and selecting the object from the context-sensitive menu.

If you don't do one of those two things, or target the object directly in the Layers panel, it will attempt to drag whatever object is targeted in the Layers panel. If that's the locked layer, that's what it will drag no matter what you click on in the document window. If an Artboard group layer is active, it will target and duplicate the whole danged thing.

Let me know if this helps solve the issue. It's all a bit complicated, but I guess we'll get used to it or Adobe will get a ton of feature requests to change it.
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Andrew Crnl

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I think you solved this for us. Thank you very much for the explanation on this! I suppose we could try to get people to vote for it as a feature but I'm not sure how we'd do that or how we could clearly describe the issue. 

Thanks again!
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Cristen Gillespie

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You're welcome. I'm glad that helped you be aware of the issues. I don't know exactly what the feature request would be, either. It could be "please have a strong box lock so any item locked with that couldn't be selected, moved, duplicated, anything at all." Just what we need. . . yet another lock icon.<G> But  since Adobe folk read here, they're taking notice of our problems.