Photoshop Hack: Bring Back The SHIFT KEY Proportional Scale and Transform

UPDATE: NEW METHOD (Photoshop CC 20.0.5)

Photoshop CC 2019 (version 20.0) introduced the proportional scale.

When transforming most layer types (pixel layers, type layers, bitmaps, Placed Smart Objects), you can scale proportionally without using the shift key like in previous versions of Photoshop.

In Photoshop CC 2019 when holding down the Shift key while dragging a corner handle during transformation now scales non-proportionally.

However, shapes and paths (that is vectors) scale non-proportionally by default when you drag a corner handle during transformations.

To revert to the legacy transform behavior in Photoshop CC 2019, do the following:

  1. Close Photoshop

    Press Ctrl Q (Mac: Command Q) to close Photoshop.

  2. Open Notepad (Windows) or a text editor on Mac OS

    Create a plain text file.

  3. Type the text below in the text file:

    TransformProportionalScale 0

  4. Save the file as “PSUserConfig.txt” to your Photoshop settings folder

    Windows: [Installation Drive]:\Users[User Name]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Photoshop CC 2019\Adobe Photoshop CC 2019 Settings\

    macOS: See below.

  5. Open Photoshop

    Once photoshop opens again the Transformation will be legacy.

(macOS) Do the following:

  • Save the file as “PSUserConfig.txt” to the desktop.
  • Control-click PSUserConfig.txt saved at the desktop and choose Copy from the pop-up menu.
  • In the Finder, choose Go > Go To Folder.
  • In the Go To Folder dialog box, type ~/Library/Preferences/Adobe Photoshop CC 2019 Settings/
  • Paste the copied file at this location.
  • Restart Photoshop


To see all the updates and new features of the new release, check out our Photoshop CC 2019 tutorials.

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Thanks for this !


This is very helpful Jesús. Could I just ask a couple of things before I undertake this hack please:
1) Does this work on the (extremely annoying) scaling that now takes place when using the Crop Tool?
2) Is it reversible?

michael clarke

Thanks for undoing Adobe’s idiocy. Much appreciated.


Thank you so much for this fix. This was annoying the crap out of me.



Akshay Chitwar

Thank you so much!


Much appreciation for this. Thank you.


Thank you! I was going crazy! I do not understand why insert this new function. With the vectors, however, you must press the shift key.

Eric Quenneville

Adobe is driving me nuts… Been holding the shift key to resize since 1997.


I use Adobe CC and do not download the applications (not sure if this makes a difference). When I go to Users/Username/ ?? there is no “library”. This worked on my laptop a while back, but now I have a new iMac and am having trouble. Where is the library?

BTW, many people may not know this, but you have to format your Text Edit file to plain text. It will only save as .rtf otherwise. Here’s how:

1. Pull down the “Format” menu and choose “Make Plain Text”, or just hit Command+Shift+T.
2. Click “OK” and then re-save the file into a txt document.

Now, where is that dang library? I need this hack! 🙂


Jack Ward



I am looking forward to trying this! Your hack doesn’t even refer to the frustration of smart objects requiring scaling with the shift key to constrain vs NO shift key to proportionately scale non smart objects. It would be nice for Adobe to make UX consistent across their suite of tools. I am not impressed.


Thank you so much! I was going crazy since I updated.


Just use Caps Lock and scale.

You’re welcome.


Will definitely try this. This is a stupid move. They assume we ONLY use their software. If you work with other applications the “normal way” of doing things still apply… going back and forth gets very confusing now and really just frustrates people.

Would be great if Adobe would just fix knowns problems with their software instead of dreaming up a load of new useless features for every release…


Oh, god. Thanks. What a relief!


This was driving me mad, so helpful man!! Thnx



Harshak c

thank you so much it’s really helpful for me

Harshak c

thank you

Kelsey Leigh

This is incredible, thank you so so much!

Craig Destefano

Thanks so much! Worked like a charm on my Mac. 2019 Photoshop proportional scale by default would be great if it was consistent with smart and vector objects!


I tried to adapt, but it drove me nuts


Annoying adobe decisions, why don’t they give me a checkbox to turn it off!!!

Pascale Dufour

The hack worked for me, but since I made it the boundary and the handle corners of the transform box had disappeared, and the crossed lines over the picture are purple.
Does anyone have the same issue?


Hi, I’m using Mac and the location path seems to be not right. I can not find Photoshop Settings folder in any way. Tried to go directly from Applications to Adobe Photoshop which doesn’t contain such a folder either. Could that be so?


Thank you! Great help! 🙂

Elbert Jan Hermans

Thank you so much, I looked in the bloody settings for like 30 minutes only to discover that Adobe forced the change on us without the option to change it how we like. Fine if they think this makes more sense, but give us the option to change it back at least!

Julio Cibrian

Thank you so much for this… I’ve been doing it this way for over 16 years and NOW they want to change it to add NOTHING of value? Hmm… interesting turn…

Thanks a million!

Kathryn Hall

Hi – I can’t seem to find any general Photoshop settings on my system, possibly because I subscribe rather than own it? Do you know where I could save the file instead? Not very teccy so I may being dense! Thanks very much.

Kathryn Hall

Ah, I didn’t realise it’s now scaling proportionally by default. That’s fine for me! Thanks, ignore my last question 🙂


Thank you for this workaround!

Please share your thoughts on this change with Adobe:

Their reasons for this change lack substance; and it seems more likely that this is a bug which is being billed as a feature. No one asked for it, and only with pressure will Adobe reverse course.


Thank you some much! Works for me.
I could be possible to get used to this new SHIFT fransformation if only Illustrator 2019 did the same thing. As long as it was different from PH, it drove me crazy.


this solution is not working for me, in my case, i already have this file in the folder with the folowing text:
# AllowRTS
uRTS 1
I tried to replace and didn`t work, then I try adding the instruction to the same file, and anything was the same could not change to the previous shift function in scalling


I think Adobe did this for parity with touch screens and the upcoming iOS version. Which in a way makes sense when using your fingers vs. a mouse.


This is great! Except you’ve really only turned off the default, not gone back to legacy. After executing the instructions, while transforming and holding down shift my object still transforms non-proportionally. Is there a fix for that?

Emilio Le Roux

Thank you very much for this.
Maybe this “new feature” could be smart, but it’s very badly implemented for some reasons:
– Why would I scale vectors out of proportion while bitmaps scale proportionally?
– If you paste some objects that look that bitmaps but are actually smart objects, they will scale unproportionally
– If you work with several CC apps, it becomes a nightmare. I have to remember if I am using AE, Ai or Ps before I scale objects, which takes me out of the former feeling of Adobe being “second nature” to me.

Problem solved.

Calvin Nah

Thank you!


thanks a million!!!!!

Rob Lent

Thank you so much. This is fantastic. Just want to keep my muscle memory from the last 25 years, THANKS ADOBE! LMAO! New CTO’s trying to change things up to help newbies… photoshop is about control, not user friendliness. 🙂


Magic! Thank you!


Thank you so much!



Michael Burmesch

OMG! Thank you!! This works great!

Paul Chamberlain

Thank you very much! I question the logic of a lot of short cut changes since CS2 but this one is beyond stupid!


Thank yo, this its very helpful!!! It was impossible to work with illustrator and photoshop without going crazy.


I just updated to CC 2019, and that really threw me for a loop, at first I thought I was going crazy and thinking “Is shift+drag the wrong thing? I’m sure that’s how to do it” because I hadn’t been using photoshop much recently, but I was thinking surely my skills can’t be THAT rusty. Then I realized I’m using a new version and maybe they changed it… but why would they change that? Anyway, I’m glad it’s an easy fix, thanks for sharing 🙂

Kevin Holding

I can’t find the adobe preference on a mac where you indicated above… Any update?


Amazing, thank you!


its work only one time & reverse back at the default stage