How to Reset Photoshop to default settings

How To Reset Photoshop to default settings. When working from Windows, I typically use Photoshop to do much of my graphical work. Gimp is also a great open source equivalent for those who prefer working from Linux (can be used in Windows as well). A typical problem people encounter when playing around with Photoshop is that of changing the default settings during experimentation and then forgetting what the baseline setting were. If you have been messing with Photoshop for long enough, you know exactly what I mean.

Well, the good news is that there is a simple fix that allows you to reset all of your Photoshop CS2 or Photoshop CS3 settings and preferences back to factory default.

How to Reset Photoshop preferences (In Windows):

  1. First, hold down all three Ctrl+Alt+Shift buttons
  2. Now "while keeping those button held," simply open Photoshop or a file that opens with Photoshop
  3. As Photoshop loads, you should get a prompt asking if you would like to "delete the Photoshop settings file", Click yes

You should now have a fresh slate with all of the settings returned to their default.

Note: I have found that this process is kind of finicky and doesn't always work. I have had the best results pressing Ctrl+Alt+Shift and clicking the photoshop shortcut from the start menu in Windows.

Another method that works well if you have another shortcut or image that can be opened with Photoshop is to do the following:

Press and hold Ctrl+Alt+Shift then (right mouse click) a Photoshop shortcut or Image file and select Open.

This concludes my How To Reset Photoshop tutorial. If all went well, you should now be back to running Photoshop with the factory default settings. 😉