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Problems/limitations of Layer Via Copy (Cmd+J)

Jul 3, 2012 8:28 PM

Some results of Layer Via Copy (Cmd+J) when pixel layers are targeted seem unusual to me. Depending on initial conditions, the result can be entire layers being duplicated instead of just the selection, masks not being duplicated, and the selection being lost plus Select > Reselect being unavailable. It's not difficult to devise workarounds but I think something may be amiss.

 

The following table shows my expected and actual results for CS6 on OS X 10.6.8. Results which I find strange are in red triple caps.

 

 

Layer-Via-Copy-results.png

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 3, 2012 9:47 PM   in reply to conroy

    Maybe I am misunderstand you, if so I appologize.

     

    layer via copy means to copy the selected portion of the image and paste it into a new layer. If a selection is not used, then assume the entire image is selected. and features of the layer are to be ignored.

     

    The reason for the latter is you are copying the image, not the layer and pasting it into a new layer.

     

    To copy and paste layers, select the layer and right click on that layer and select duplicate layer. Or hold down the alt key and drag the layer to a new location. In both of these cases, the layers mask and styles are also copied.

    As for the selection, it is treated as its own entity. You can use the select menu to effect what happens to it, including saving that selection as a channel, right clicking on a channel will allow you to duplicate it, if needed, btw.

     

    Hope that answers some of your issues and I really hope it doesn't confuse anything.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 3, 2012 10:25 PM   in reply to conroy

    Are your results different from say photoshop cs5 or other versions of photoshop?

     

    I guess since layer via copy for multiple selected layers is new in cs6 you won't be able to compare those results.

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 4, 2012 4:52 AM   in reply to conroy

    There were changes made in CS6 like conroy2009 I do not understand CS6 there are many bugs in CS6.   Before CS6 Ctrl|CMD+J was new Layer via Copy which was available only when a single layer was targeted and if there was an active selection only the selected area would be copied to the new layer. If more then one layer was targeted the command menu Layer>New>Layer Via Copy (CMD|Ctrl+J) would be grayed out and not available.  With CS6 this is no longer the case.

    So with CS5 only the top portion of his chart would be available and I would argue he chart is not compleatly right

    http://forums.adobe.com/servlet/JiveServlet/showImage/2-4537328-210066/Layer-Via-Copy-results.png

    So lets look at CS5 first in this chart:

     

    I agree with row 1

    row 2 I do not agree with IMO selection is maintained and reselectable yes the selection is deselected however its maintained by the new layers transparency which is selectable.

    I agree with row 3

    with CS5 row 4 is not available and is grayed out.

     

    Now with CS6  row 1,2,3 work the same as CS5.

    Row in CS5 is not available in CS6 its available however the new layer that is produce is not correct by any stretch of one's imagination

     

    With more them one layer selected CMD+J  is new and would not new layer but new layers I would expect layer like rows 1,2 asd 3 would work correctly and those like row 4 would be haywire.  I don't want to test CS6 more.

     
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  • Pierre Courtejoie
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    Jul 4, 2012 4:54 AM   in reply to conroy

    Hi!

    Some of the expectations make sense, some leave me dubitative: If there is a selection active, and you perform a LVC on several layers, should it copy only the selected area on all layers, or only on the one where the selection is active/was made?

     
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  • Pierre Courtejoie
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    Jul 4, 2012 4:58 AM   in reply to JJMack

    JJ, line 4 works in CS3. are you sure the layer is targeted?

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 5, 2012 12:04 AM   in reply to Pierre Courtejoie

    PECourtejoie wrote:

     

    JJ, line 4 works in CS3. are you sure the layer is targeted?

    It may be available in CS3.  The second machine I had CS3 crashed a while back, so I can no longer install CS3 without calling Adobe for I did nod deactivate it.

    I may have to do that for CS3 is the version of Photoshop that does not have bugs that affect what I use in Photoshop.

     

    The only versions of Photoshop I can test these days are CS2 CS5 and CS6.

    CS6 is so buggy I don't use it.

    With CS2 row 4 is available, however the new layer created is not correct for the targeted layer layer mask does not affect the creation of the new layer. I retested CS5 and though it looked like I had targeted the layer, the actual target was the layer's layer mask. When I targeted the layers contents the command was available like in CS2; the created layer did not reflect the transparency caused by the layer's layer mask.

     

    CS6 is still an other story: while cs6 works the same when the layer layer contents is the target, the command is available when the layer mask is the actual target, and the result is that the layer is duplicated and the selection is not honored.

     

    Here are some screen captures

    CS5 with layer contents targeted

    CS5CMDj.jpg

    Results

    CS5CMDjResults.jpg

    CS6 with Layer Mask being the target

    CS6CMDj.jpg

    results

    CS6CMDjresults.jpg

     

    In any case row 4 does not work the way I expected it too.

     

    I never ran into this problem for normally I use stamp visible layers to create the new layers I want.

    Shift+Alt+Ctrl+N   Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E  or simply Shift+Alt+Ctrl+N+E

     

    Stamp visible layers does not honor an active selection but leaves it active, so you can add it as a layer mask by just clicking the add layer mask icon in the layers palette after stamping visible layers.....

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 5, 2012 12:08 AM   in reply to conroy

    conroy2009 wrote:

     

    CS6 has added multiple layers to LVC capability, but with regard to single targeted pixel layers, CS6 and CS5.1 are the same.

    Actually you are partly correct.  You have to be careful when you state single targeted pixel layer.

     

    There a trap there for there can actually be two targets within this beast in the layers palette: The Layer's pixel contents or a Layer Mask pixel contents.

    How Photoshop works has been known to change from release to release.  This is particularly true when the layer mask is the target.  It is also very easy not to realize that you have targeted the layer's layer mask for sometimes Photoshop changes your current target when you do things like when add a layer or add a layer mask, Photoshop changes the current target from what it was to the newly added item.

     

    In CS5 CMD+J is not available when the layer mask is the target; in CS6 this has changed.

     

    Sometimes Photoshop will change back and forth from release to release.

    So Actions and scripts may work in some releases and not others.  I had created actions and scripts to create collages that placed in images then add a layer mask.

    While they worked in CS3 they did not work in CS2 and CS4 for place was not available in CS2 and CS4 when a layer mask was the current target where it is available in CS3 and CS5.

    I did not check CS6. My Script and actions placed the first image in CS2 and CS4 failed placing the second image, where CS3 and CS5 worked. I changed the scripts and actions to target the RGB channel in case that when Photoshop changes the target to the layer mask that version may make place unavailable.

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 5, 2012 12:10 AM   in reply to conroy

    conroy2009 wrote:

    Considering directly targeted pixel layers, my opinion is that regardless of the number of targeted layers, LVC should be consistent in its results. My preference would be that only the selected area (entire layer by default if no selection) of every targeted layer should be duplicated, all attached masks should be duplicated and the selection should not be lost.

    What I don't understand is why someone would want to duplicate many layers like that.  Also you have been able to do what you want I believe for some time now, but it does require a little more than a shortcut key to do.

     

    In all cases you need to target the layers you want to duplicate. Then you need to make the selection you want. Then you used the shortcut CMD+J which does not work the way you want.

     

    So instead, drag the selected layers in the layers palette to the new layers icon in the layers palette, this will dupe all the targeted layers and change the current target to these newly added layers. Then use menu Layer>New>Group from Layers... Then click the add clipping mask icon in the layers palette to add the selection as a group clipping mask.

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 4, 2012 9:45 AM   in reply to conroy

    I understand your new to Photoshop. CS6 is the buggy est version of Photoshop I have purchased from Adobe.  I have been using Photoshop for some time. I have PS3, PS5, PS7, CS, CS2, CS3, CS5 and CS6.  I do understand why you would rather press a key combo than use several Photoshop commands.  However I also know you want things to work as expected. The ability to use CMD+J on more then one targeted layer is a new feature in CS6.  CS6 is very buggy.   There is always more then one way to do thing in Photoshop.  When you discover a bug in Photoshop you need to find a way around it.  Adobe is very slow delivering Bug fixes and often defer fixing bugs to future releases of Photoshop.  Right now my way around CS6 bugs is to use a prior versions of Photoshop all are better then CS6.

     

    Why not  Report a Bug or Suggest a Feature to learn how the process and Adobe works.

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 4, 2012 11:41 AM   in reply to conroy

    My advice for you then is be very observant for some things behave differently under some circumstances.  Thing aren't always as the should be...For example. 

     

    From Photoshop Help you well read:

     

    Stamp all visible layers

    1. Turn visibility on for the layers you want to merge.

    2. Press Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS).

    Photoshop creates a new layer containing the merged content.

     

    The reality is more like this:

     

    Stamp all visible layers

    1. Turn visibility on for the layers you want to merge.

    2. Press Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS).

    Photoshop creates a new layer containing the merged content sometimes.

     

    There are some circumstances when you use the shortcut Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS) that Photoshop will do nothing not even through up an error message. Some other circumstance will stamp the visible layers composite into the currently targeted layer no layer will be added.  The help also does not document where in the layer stack a new layer containing the merged content is added.

     

    When a layer is added to the layer stack Photoshop adds it on top of the highest currently targeted layer.  However if when you use the shortcut Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS) and the highest targeted layer has its visibility off Photoshop does nothing. Photoshop also does nothing if there is currently only one visible layer.   And if the highest targeted layer is empty Photoshop does not add a layer but stamps the merged contents into that layer.

     

    Because of these circumstances you need to be very careful when you record Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS) in an action for one of these circumstances may exists particularly if you give someone else your action to use.  An action has no way to know so it must be recorded in a way the you know for sure the current circumstance. Its actually quite easy to do. You start off with the shortcut for add layer without a prompt Shift+Ctrl+Alt+N (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+N (Mac OS). This shortcut will always add an empty layer above the highest currently targeted layer regardless of its visibility and the layer added becomes the currently targeted layer.  Now the Action knows that the current circumstance is that. So when it then does Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS) no layer will be added and the merged visible content will be stamped into the layer just added,  or the layer will remain empty because there were no visible layers to begin with.  

     

    Normally I use Stamp visible layer as a work layer to do something like add a sharpening adjustment layer.  So I need the layer to be the topmost layer. So after I add the layer I move it to the front of the stack with menu Layer>Arrange>Bring to Front or use its shortcut keys.

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Jul 4, 2012 12:44 PM   in reply to JJMack

    JJMack wrote:

     

    CS6 is the buggy est version of Photoshop I have purchased from Adobe.

     

    Not surprising, since it was built before the public beta even began.

     

    Clearly, hitting planned release dates is the most important thing at Adobe.  Even if the product is bathwater, when a release build is needed to start system testing it goes.

     

    Adobe needs to realize that people NOTICE this.  They also NOTICE that Adobe charges a premium for their software, and because of this they have a right to expect quality to be second-to-none, as well as features and documentation.

     

    There are clear ways to fix this.  The simplest, conceptually, is far from the simplest in actuality, but it may be necessary:  Add more talent to the project.  It is a top of the line product, what's wrong with hiring more top of the line staff?  I understand the entire team is less than 100 people. 

     

    Surely with millions of copies being sold the staff could be made a bit larger without losing money.  Some poor, poor executives might not want to lose a few hundred thousand dollars from their bonuses, but with a better, richer, higher-quality product that's not going to happen.  Just think of how many people ran the trial version, found it to be slow or buggy, and didn't buy.  What would it take to fund one more developer profitably?  Another 1000 copies sold worldwide?  You don't think not having the Text corruption bug or some of the ones outstanding for several major versions now might sell 0.1% more product?

     

    I continually get the impression that Adobe is starving itself.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Pierre Courtejoie
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    Jul 5, 2012 12:16 AM   in reply to JJMack

    JJMack, it haven't yet done so, you should report your findings on the feedback site, especially: " When a layer is added to the layer stack Photoshop adds it on top of the highest currently targeted layer.  However if when you use the shortcut Shift+Ctrl+Alt+E (Windows) or Shift+Command+Option+E (Mac OS) and the highest targeted layer has its visibility off Photoshop does nothing. Photoshop also does nothing if there is currently only one visible layer.  "

    We all know that they can't fix everything immidately, but if the issues are not reported, they are way less chances for them to be fixed.

     
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  • Pierre Courtejoie
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    Jul 5, 2012 12:17 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    Noel, each time I've seen people suggest adding staff, I've seen answers that reference the book http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mythical_Man-Month

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 5, 2012 5:20 AM   in reply to Pierre Courtejoie

    PECourtejoie wrote:

     

    Noel, each time I've seen people suggest adding staff, I've seen answers that reference the book http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Mythical_Man-Month

     

    I feel and I would be willing to bet Noel would agree with me that book would be a good book to require Adobe management to read.  That book document the processes and tools that need to be in place to develop code and manage the process.  At one time I'm sure Adobe knew all of what is in that book and had it in place. Because of the success of Photoshop Adobe grew and all of those learned lessons were forgotten and lost which has lead to the state the Adobe in now in.  CS6 perhaps is Alpha code. Yes Adobe Management needs that book....

     

    By the way I work for IBM from 1962 to 2002 that is 40 years 35 of which were involved with programming and the Mythical Man-Month in all of the time I wrote very little code that customers actually got to use.  Most of the code I wrote was internal test and development tools. Programmers involved in the design process were also responsible for code development and testing they need test plans and test code to exercise every line of code that was released to customers. I wrote many test applications and test tools for I have good debugging skills for I create so many errors myself.

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Jul 5, 2012 5:49 AM   in reply to JJMack

    Your experience exceeds mine, but not by a lot, JJ.  I started programming mainframes in 1976.

     

    In my experience I have come to believe:

     

    There are two kinds of software engineers in the world...  Talented ones, and ones who try to skate by.

     

    There are two kinds of managers in the world...  Team builders  who identify with the engineers, and administrators who toe the line of those above them.

     

    It's harder to be the first of the two kinds in each case, but time has proven that only a well-led team of talented people can do exceptional software work, which is required for long-term success.  The "myth" is that it can be done at all by the other kinds, or that even mixing multiple kinds together can work.  Trouble is, once management starts to populate itself with administrators, the talented engineers tend to get de-motivated and move on.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • JJMack
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    Jul 5, 2012 6:40 AM   in reply to Noel Carboni

    It has always amazed me as to how success leads to failure.  IBM won the computers wars because of Tom Watson Jr's insisting that all IBM computers models have the same end user programming interface no mater what the machines internal architecture was ie.(360/370) engineer Gene Amdahl. While a BUNCH of other companies engineers created models with different user architectures. BUNCH: Burroughs, UNIVAC, NCR, Control Data Corporation, and Honeywell and along with RCA and General Electric, the 1960's  was known as "IBM and the Seven Dwarfs."  IBM lost or agreed to loose a court case because of their success even though they won the game fair and square.  Bill Gates learn from this and did not agree to loose in court no IBM consent decree not for Bill.   IBM also forgot the lessons learned and went on to design other computer architectures which though good like the successful system 32 never stood a chance agents the 360/370.  IBM also publish its IBM PC AT BIOS in a tech ref which enabled anyone to go out and  buy off the shelf parts and build an IBM compatible PC.  At IBM expense that create a whole new industry and enable a cunning Bill Gates to become the worlds richest man...

     
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