You use the Tabs panel (Window > Type > Tabs) to set tab stops for a paragraph or type object. For more information on using and setting tabs, see web Help.
A. Tab alignment buttons B. Tab position C. Tab leader box D. Align On box E. Panel menu F. Tab ruler G. Snap panel above frame
You can access additional commands and options in the Tabs panel menu. To use this menu, click the triangle in the upper right corner of the panel.
You can position the Tabs panel anywhere in the work area; however, it is usually helpful to align the Tabs panel with a type object.
The units of measure for the tab ruler are defined by the General units settings specified in the Units preferences (for all files) or by the units specified in the Document Setupdialog box (for the current file).
- To change the units of measure for all files, specify a new value for General Units in the Units preferences.
- To change the units of measure for the current file, specify a new units value in the Document Setup dialog box.
Tab stops apply to an entire paragraph. When you set the first tab, Illustrator deletes all default tab stops to the left of that stop. As you set more tab stops, Illustrator deletes all default tabs between the tabs you set.
In the Tabs panel, click a tab-alignment button to specify how text aligns relative to the tab’s position:
to place text in alignment with a specified character, such as a period or a dollar sign. This option is useful for creating columns of numbers.
Click a location on the tab ruler to position a new tab stop.
Type a position in the X box (for horizontal text) or Y box (for vertical text), and press Enter or Return. If the X or Y value is selected, press the Up Arrow or Down Arrow key to increase or decrease the tab value by 1 point, respectively.
note: When you use the tab ruler, you cannot set tab stops in increments smaller than 1. However, if you specify a position in the X or Y box, you can set stops at intervals as small as 0.01 point.
For information on setting indents using the Tabs panel, see Indent text.
The Repeat Tab command creates multiple tabs based on the distance between the tab and the left indent or the previous tab stop.
Type a new location in the X box (for horizontal text) or Y box (for vertical text), and press Enter or Return.
Drag the tab to a new location.
To move all tab stops simultaneously, Ctrl‑drag (Windows) or Command‑drag (Mac OS) a tab.
As you move a tab stop, a visual guide appears in the selected text.
A tab leader is a repeated pattern of characters, such as a series of dots or dashes, between a tab and the following text.