Properties box remains greyed out if I select more than one text frame

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I have run into an issue with selections of multiple objects (in this case, text frames). According to a tutorial video I am watching (made by Kevin Pugh), I should be able to select two text frames (using the shift-click method) and adjust the properties of both of them at once. This is not possible for me, since the entire properties box with all of its tabs are greyed out and cannot be modified.

I have Scribus 1.4.6 installed, running on a Mac Powerbook with OS X 10.9.5.

Thank you for any and all assistance.


Welcome to the forum enorvelle.

If you select a text frame, then shift-select another text frame, the only tabs of the Properties Palette that I would expect - in 1.4.x versions of Scribus - to be available for changes would be "X,Y,Z", "Line" and "Colours". All other tabs should be greyed out and unavailable. (The "Line" and "Colours" tabs, while not greyed out, will be unusable unless you opened one of them before shift-clicking but that's a quirk of how Scribus works.)

At the very least, the "X,Y,Z" tab should be available/usable as you must be able to change the position/level/etc. of multiple frames at the same time.

This is how Scribus has worked for me on OSX since I started using it a few years ago. If this works differently on other OSes then something needs to be fixed either way. (Scribus on OSX doesn't always work the same way as with other OSes for some reason.)

It would help if you could post a link to the tutorial so that people can see what happens in it to check against what should be happening.


Thanks GerryP!

The tutorial is in the format of a YouTube video:

I couldn't see him doing anything unexpected, it looks like just a shift-click.



I tried following the procedure in the tutorial - for those wanting to look it's just after the 5 minute mark - and I can't reproduce it. On my copy of Scribus - 1.4.5 on OSX - once more than one text frame is selected the "Text" tab of the Properties Palette is greyed out. The same behaviour is reproduced in Scribus 1.5.1svn (also on OSX). The same behaviour is also reproduced in Scribus 1.4.2 (or 1.4.3svn depending on what it actually is) on Linux Mint.

I noticed that the tutorial is performed on Scribus (by reading the title bar) so that's an old - and possibly unstable - version of Scribus. (I can't tell which Linux distro he's using but it looks like Mint.) The tutorial is more than 5 years old so it probably needs updating to using a newer Scribus version.

However, all is not lost. The tutorial is actually teaching the wrong thing in this case.

Text formatting is done to the text, not the frame. This means that any formatting done to the text will apply to that text whichever frame it is in or flows into, so you don't need to select multiple frames. You can make the formatting changes in whatever frame you want and - in the case of what's happening in the tutorial - the changes will be made to all of the text. Just remember that text formatting affects the text not the frame and you'll be fine.