Pages 1.0.x: How to create a new document with the left margin already hidden

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Pages
August 4th, 2005 • 3:15 pm

As indicated in another post earlier today, Pages’ default behaviour when it comes to displaying the left margin of a document is a significant screen space waster.

Fortunately, when you scroll horizontally to the right to hide the left margin, and then save your document, Pages preserves the horizontal position.

However, if you save your Pages document as a template to use at the basis for future Pages document, this particular window setting is not preserved. Pages preserves the window’s zoom setting and its overall size, but it does not preserve the horizontal scrolling position.

This means that, every time you create a new Pages document based on your template, Pages opens the document in a new window with the right zoom setting and window size, but the left margin is fully visible and you have to scroll manually to the right to hide it again. And you have to repeat this operation manually for each and every new document you create based on your template.

There is a way to work around this, however. But it means that you won’t be using Pages’ built-in “Templates” feature. Instead, you will do something that’s pretty much equivalent. You create a blank Pages document with all the styles that you need, and with the window zoom setting and horizontal scrolling position that you desire. But then, instead of saving that document as a Pages template, you just save it as a regular Pages document.

Then, in the Finder, you lock the document (in the Information window). And you put it in a folder called “Pages Templates” and you put this folder in your Dock, on the right-hand side.

When you need to create a new Pages document, instead of using Pages’ own “New…” command, which opens the sheet where you have to choose the template on which your new document will be based, you just go to your “Pages Templates” folder in your Dock and select the document you want to use as a template.

Pages will open it as an exist document, i.e. it will preserve its horizontal scrolling position, which is what you wanted. Then you just have to save the document under a new name in the desired location. If you press command-S by accident instead doing “Save As…“, Pages will simply refuse to save the document, because it is locked.

It’s not completely elegant, but it’s the best work-around I have in order to avoid having to adjust the horizontal scrolling position each and every time I create a new document. And it’s not really more cumbersome than having to go through Pages’ own “Choose a template” dialog sheet anyway.

Unfortunately, even this approach doesn’t avoid the problem with Pages scrolling back to the left when you start a new page. But I am afraid there is no way around this particular problem.

4 Responses to “Pages 1.0.x: How to create a new document with the left margin already hidden”

  1. Warren Beck says:

    Do you get the same result by checking the Stationery Pad checkbox in the get Info window? If you open a Stationery pad document, the file is opened with the name “Untitled,” so a command-S requires entry of a new file name.

    Just a suggestion…. Cheers.

  2. Pierre Igot says:

    Forgot to mention that… On my system, I cannot check the “Stationery” check box in the Get Information window for a Pages file. It just refuses to be checked. Does it work for you?

  3. Warren Beck says:


    Nope. Just tried it on one of my Pages documents. When clicked, the “Stationery pad” check box shows a check for an instant, and then it clears. So it won’t stay set. I made the suggestion above because I thought that I had made stationery pads before, but it doesn’t work!

    This is a weird behavior. The “Stationery Pad” feature is a feature that was available in Mac OS 9, but it seems that Apple is deprecating it. I would rather be able to make a document into a template in the Finder rather than having to “export” a document from inside the application (Pages) as a template.

    By the way, the “Stationery Pad” feature doesn’t work properly in Adobe InDesign. You can click the checkbox, and it stays clicked, but if you double click the pad document in the Finder, a copy is made, and the copy is opened, and it doesn’t get the “untitled” name you might expect.

    This indicates that the “Stationery Pad” feature is not properly designed in the Finder, and I’ll bet it will disappear soon. Again, it is a Mac OS 9 feature that Apple no longer believes in.

  4. Pierre Igot says:

    Yeah, I suspect you’re right.

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