Units preference won't stick in Illustrator 2018

Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 20, 2017 Oct 20, 2017

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I use Inches as my "General" unit of measure, but in the new 2018 version (running under Win 7), it doesn't stick.

I'm pretty sure all my other preference settings are sticking...it's just Units that won't take. On every launch or New Document, it reverts to Points.

I've tried all the combinations, (prefs dump/reset, close/relaunch, reboot, set with document/no document open, set at the rulers, etc., etc,. etc.), I can think of short of uninstall/reinstall...

Anyone else see this?

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Adobe Community Professional , Nov 16, 2017 Nov 16, 2017
I don't think that the Units in the Preferences should change when a New Document with a different Unit setting is created.But that's the way it has worked for a very long time (I can only check as long ago as version CS4).The Preference setting for units is only used when a non native document is opened that does not have a unit setting: image files like jpeg or a pdf wiithout Illustrator editing capabilities.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 20, 2017 Oct 20, 2017

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If you did not get rid of any preference folders left over from your previous version of Illustrator you should do so. I've seen several instances in the last few days where trashing old preference files got rid of certain problems that had appeared to be bugs.

To trash preferences:

For Macintosh Users: With Illustrator closed launch a Finder Window in column view and click on your home folder. With the Option Key pressed choose Library from the Finder Go Menu. Within the Library folder find the folder called Preferences and within it find the following two files and delete them: “Adobe Illustrator <Version #> Settings” (earlier versions of Illustrator might just say “Adobe Illustrator”) and “com.adobe.Illustrator.plist”. When Illustrator is next launched it will create new preference files and the program will be restored to its defaults.

For Windows Users: On Windows 7 and above the preference files are hidden. To find them go to the Control Panel and open Folder Options and then click the View tab. Then select “Show hidden files and folders” or “Show hidden files, folders or drive options” in Advanced Settings. Then delete (or rename) the folder at the end of this path: C:\Users\[User Name]\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Adobe Illustrator [version number]\ Settings\<Language>. Make sure that Illustrator is closed when you do this. When you relaunch the program it will create  new preference files and the program will be at its default settings.

After you’ve reset up the program (make sure that no document window is open) to your liking, it is a really good idea to create copies of your personalized “mint” preference files (make sure that you quit the program before copying them—that finalizes your customization) and use them in the future to replace any corrupt versions you may need to delete.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 20, 2017 Oct 20, 2017

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Thanks Bill. I had already done that, but working through it again, I found it was simpler (and I was dumber) than I thought.

I would have expected (rightly so, I think), that setting my General Units to Inches in Preferences would override or dictate all downstream choices of units, but the New Document dialog has its own Units menu which defaults to Points regardless of the setting in Preferences. To make matters worse, if you (like I did) miss that and unwittingly accept the New Document defaults, it overrides your entry in Preferences, changing it to match the setting you accepted in the New Document dialog.

So, my difficulty was due to a general lack of experience with the application in its default state, more than anything else. Once I set a New Document's Units to Inches, the identical Preferences entry stuck.

All that said, I'd say the way it works is a design mistake. Nothing should be able to override your entry in Preferences. Indeed, it should be the reverse, with your Preferences entry inherited downstream, rather than overridden upstream. For all I know, it's always been this way and it took me years to trip over it.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 20, 2017 Oct 20, 2017

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Glad it worked out.

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New Here ,
Nov 16, 2017 Nov 16, 2017

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John thanks! I thought I was going to go crazy over this one. I can't tell you how many hours I lost searching this, deleting preferences, and pulling my hair out.

I think you are absolutely right—no program should work this way. If you set units to inches (like I did), and then open the New Document dialog, the units in that dialog should be inches. What the hell is the point of having a preference for units otherwise?

Anyway thanks again.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 16, 2017 Nov 16, 2017

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I don't think that the Units in the Preferences should change when a New Document with a different Unit setting is created.

But that's the way it has worked for a very long time (I can only check as long ago as version CS4).

The Preference setting for units is only used when a non native document is opened that does not have a unit setting: image files like jpeg or a pdf wiithout Illustrator editing capabilities.

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Explorer ,
Nov 23, 2017 Nov 23, 2017

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Thanks John and Bill I tried both of your solutions but but neither of these solutions seem to work for me straight away.

I open Illustrator (Mac, latest version), change Illustrator/Preferences/Units to millimetres, quit Illustrator, re-open Illustrator and it's back to points as default every time. It's really annoying. Then when I open the new document pane it's set to points even though I had just changed Illustrator's preferences to millimetres.

I found I had to open a new document from that pane, then quit Illustrator and re-open it before both Illustrator preferences and new document preferences would default to millimetres. There seem to be so many new issues like this in the latest updates to Photoshop and Illustrator.

Speaking of annoying bugs on Mac ... I found my reply above full of stupid auto-corrections that were wrong. I've done everything to turn this feature off but have given up, nothing works...

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Nov 23, 2017 Nov 23, 2017

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StarmanJones  schrieb

I found I had to open a new document from that pane, then quit Illustrator and re-open it before both Illustrator preferences and new document preferences would default to millimetres. There seem to be so many new issues like this in the latest updates to Photoshop and Illustrator.

You have to set this up in the New document profile that you are using

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Enthusiast ,
Feb 13, 2020 Feb 13, 2020

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There also something weird happening with document guides. It doesnt seem to be saved properly for me on OSX. When i only change guides from say points to mm, its not registered as a change in the document. So nothing is saved when closed, but when you do change something in document and then change rulers, they do get saved in the document. 

Seems like another ruler and unit weirdness in Illustrator

 

Plus there something else, when you set global rulers back to Points for instance. The new document window also changes again. So say you ve set it up to alway use A papersize with Millimeters units. When you change the ruler settings in Preferences, the doc window also reverts back to points?!?!?!

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Community Beginner ,
Feb 22, 2018 Feb 22, 2018

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Good call. Thank you!

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Community Beginner ,
Jun 20, 2019 Jun 20, 2019

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I had a similar problem having to constantly switch between metric and imperial for different clients. Thanks for the explanation on how to fix it. Just an extra note to make sure others understand that you can change the individual document unit settings at any time in file > document setup.

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New Here ,
Apr 07, 2022 Apr 07, 2022

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You've helped me from pulling all of my hair out! My general preferences are set to inches but my shapes were drawing out in pixels until I tried your suggestion. I can't thank you enough!

 

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Enthusiast ,
Feb 13, 2020 Feb 13, 2020

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Yeah, this is truly the most weird method of using Global units. Why would you want to change them when you make a new document in some different measurement unit? I went bananas again today. Glad im not the only banana on this forum 😉

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