If you want to have easy access to palettes like Tool Palettes, Properties, and External References, without having them clutter your screen or having to open and close them all the time, check out the new "anchor" option. (I think this was introduced in version 2006.) Right-clicking on the title bar of a palette (it's usually blue) brings up a shortcut menu with, among other things, "Anchor Left <" or "Anchor Right >". Choosing one of these attaches the palette to that side of the screen, where it rolls up in a nice little bar the width of a toolbar. Hover over the bar to bring up the whole palette. Move away, and it will auto-hide again. The nice thing about anchoring is that you can stack several palettes on top of each other in the same narrow space, yet they still unroll to the full size of your screen. Try it by anchoring both Tool Palettes and Properties to the left, and you'll see what I mean. Anchoring palettes is a great way to maximize your screen real estate.