This browser does not support basic Web standards, preventing the display of our site's intended design. May we suggest that you upgrade your browser?

Adobe InDesign CS3

The InDesign Environment

Adobe InDesign CS3 is a powerful document layout application used for desktop publishing that is available for both Windows and Macintosh users. The application allows you to manipulate features such as page size, layers, text, graphics, and borders. InDesign brings together text and images to create professional-looking resumes, brochures, handouts, and newsletters.

This document will familiarize you with the InDesign environment and its components.

Return to topThe InDesign Workspace

The InDesign workspace contains many parts that work together to make creating a document easier. The image below shows these parts.
InDesign Workspace

Return to topWorkspace Elements

Understanding the elements you see in the InDesign workspace is the first step to becoming familiar with the application. The elements listed below are the ones that are used most often.

Title Bar
The Title Bar displays the document's name. If the document is unnamed, the name displayed in the Title Bar will be Untitled-1 or Untitled-[number] depending on how many unnamed documents are open. 

The two rulers running vertically and horizontally along the screen can be set to several measurements including points, picas, inches, inches decimal, millimeters, centimeters, ciceros, or agates. If rulers are not visible on your screen or you need to change the measurement system, see Working with Rulers & Guides.

The Pasteboard is the background behind the InDesign document. It is a useful place to temporarily place text and graphic elements when deciding where to place them, or when moving items between pages. Text and graphics on the pasteboard will not print.

Navigation Buttons
The navigation buttons allow you to move between pages in consecutive order or to the first or last page of the document.

Page Pull-Down List
The Page pull-down list allows you to jump to a specific page in your document, including a document master.

The colored lines represent the page margins. All the text and graphics are generally placed within the page margins, although information outside of the margins will show up in the printed document.

Page Boundaries
The page boundaries represent the edges of the paper. Any items outside or overlapping the page boundaries will not print.

The tools that InDesign provides accomplish various tasks. The most common tools are the Selection ToolSelection Tooland the Type ToolType Tool. If the Toolbox is not visible, see Displaying the Toolbox.

Scroll Bars
The scroll bars are similar to those in Microsoft Word and other applications. InDesign's scroll bars help you move to various points on the current page. Scroll bars are not used to move between pages.

Resize Box
The Resize boxResize Box, in the lower right corner of the window, is used to change the size of the window. Click and drag it to resize the window. The Resize box does not change the final size of the page; it alters the size that the page and pasteboard appear on your screen.

The Dock
The Dock, located at the right of the InDesign workspace, contains the different palettes you will use when working with documents in InDesign (e.g., the Character and Paragraph palettes). The Dock can also be minimized so that the different palettes can be pulled out on their own.

Excellence. Our Measure. Our Motto. Our Goal.