Override Snap Behaviour in Visio with These Simple Tricks

Posted by: Avantix Learning Team

Posted: January 20, 2017

Applies to: Microsoft® Visio® 2013 and 2016

By default, Visio’s dynamic grid is turned on as well as a number of “snap to” settings so when you move or resize shapes or connectors, the selected object(s) will automatically snap to grids, guides or other objects. You may want to temporarily override the “snap to” behavior on some occasions when you are moving or resizing objects.

Recommended: No Mouse? Using Keyboard Only Navigation in Microsoft Office (Part 1: The Ribbon)

Moving Objects

To move shapes or even multi-shape selections and override “snap to” settings, press Alt while dragging. This trick also applies to connectors but they will still snap to glue targets. Ensure that you are dragging the object(s) by a border, not a handle.

The Alt + drag trick also works in combination with the Control and Shift keys when dragging.

For example:

  • Alt + Shift + drag results in a non-snapping move of the selected object(s).
  • Alt + Control + drag results in a non-snapping copy of the selected object(s).

Resizing Objects

To resize shapes or even multi-shape selections and override “snap to” settings, press Alt while dragging resizing handles.

For example:

  • Alt + Shift + drag a side handle results in a non-snapping resize from centre of the selected object(s).
  • Alt + Control + drag a corner handle results in a non-snapping resize in both dimensions of the selected object(s).

You can save a lot of time and aggravation using these simple tricks.

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