Migrate presets from earlier versions of Photoshop

You can migrate presets from earlier versions of Photoshop into newer versions. The Migrate Presets command lets you automatically migrate brushes, swatches, gradients, patterns, and more.

  1. Choose Edit > Presets > Migrate Presets.

  2. Click Yes when prompted to import presets from an earlier version of Photoshop.

  3. Click OK.

From an expert: Migrating presets into Photoshop

From an expert: Migrating presets into Photoshop
Quickly import presets into Photoshop using the Migrate Presets command.
Dave Cross

Work with the Preset Manager

About the Preset Manager

The Preset Manager lets you manage the libraries of preset brushes, swatches, gradients, styles, patterns, contours, custom shapes, and preset tools that come with Photoshop. For example, you can use the Preset Manager to change the current set of preset items or create new libraries. After you load a library in the Preset Manager, you can access the library’s items in locations such as the options bar, panels, dialog boxes, and so on.

In general, when you change a preset, Photoshop prompts you to save the changes as a new preset so that both the original and changed preset remain available.

Each type of library has its own file extension and default folder. Preset files are installed on your computer inside the Presets folder in the Adobe Photoshop application folder.

To open the Preset Manager, choose Edit > Presets > Preset Manager. Choose an option from the Preset Type menu to switch to a specific preset type.

You can adjust the configuration of presets by clicking the panel menu button and choosing a display mode from the top section of the menu:

Text Only

Displays the name of each preset item.

Small Thumbnail or Large Thumbnail

Displays a thumbnail of each preset item.

Small List or Large List

Displays the name and thumbnail of each preset item.

Stroke Thumbnail

Displays a sample brush stroke and brush thumbnail of each brush preset. (This option is available for brush presets only.)

To rearrange the list of items, drag an item up or down in the list.

Photoshop Preset Manager
Rearranging tool presets in the Preset Manager

Note:

To delete a preset in the Preset Manager, select the preset and click Delete. You can always use the Reset command to restore the default items in a library.

Load a library of preset items

  • Do one of the following:
    • Click the triangle to the right of the Preset Type pop‑up menu and then choose a library file from the bottom of the panel menu. Click OK to replace the current list, or click Append to add the current list.
    • To add a library to the current list, click Load, select the library file you want to add, and click Load.
    • To replace the current list with a different library, choose Replace [Preset Type] from the panel menu. Select the library file you want to use, and click Load.

    Note:

    Each type of library has its own file extension and default folder.

Manage preset items

You can rename or delete preset items, as well as create or restore libraries of presets.

Rename preset items

  1. Select a preset item. Shift-click to select multiple items.
  2. Do one of the following:
    • Click Rename, and then enter a new name for the brush, swatch, and so on.
    • If the Preset Manager currently displays presets as thumbnails, double-click a preset, enter a new name, and click OK.
    • If the Preset Manager currently displays presets as a list or text only, double-click a preset, enter a new name inline, and press Enter (Windows) or Return (Mac OS).

Delete preset items

  • Do one of the following:
    • Select a preset item, and click Delete.
    • Alt-click (Windows) or Option-click (Mac OS) the items you want to delete.

Create a new library of presets

  1. Do one of the following:
    • To save all the presets in the list as a library, make sure that all items are selected.
    • To save a subset of the current list as a library, hold down Shift, and select the items you want to save.
  2. Click Save Set, choose a location for the library, enter a file name, and click Save.

    You can save the library anywhere. However, if you place the library file in the appropriate Presets folder in the default preset location, the library name will appear at the bottom of the panel menu after you restart Photoshop.

Restore the default library of preset items

  • Choose Reset from the panel menu. You can either replace the current list or append the default library to the current list.

Default preset locations

  1. The default location for saving/loading/replacing presets depends on your operating system.
    • Windows 7 and Windows Vista: [Drive]:\Users\<user>\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop [version_number]\Presets.
    • Mac: <User>/Library/Application Support/Adobe/AdobePhotoshop [version_number]/Presets.
    • Windows XP: [Drive]:\Document and Settings\<user>\Application Data\Adobe\AdobePhotoshop [version_number]\Presets.
  2. Presets that ship with Adobe Photoshop are stored in the Photoshop program folder.

Displaying hidden files in Windows

The default locations for saving/loading/replacing presets are hidden by default in Windows.

See Show hidden files and folders to learn how to view hidden items.

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