Gmail's new compose window is highly controversial. Some users like it as they can now access emails at the same time and in the same browser tab to reference them or re-read them while composing an answer. Others do not like it that much for its small nature and position on the screen.
While it is currently possible to switch to the old compose window for the time being, it is fairly certain that this is only a temporary solution that won't be available forever. Eventually, all Gmail users will have to use the new compose window whether they like it or not.
The only option in the interface to change the window itself is to click on the arrow icon in the window's top toolbar. Clicking on that link opens the compose form in a new larger window on the screen.
This window acts independent from the Gmail page it has been launched on. Even better: since it is launched in its own window, you are free to change the size of the window to make it larger or smaller.
Having to open the small compose window on the Google Mail page first only to open the larger compose window afterwards is not an optimal solution though, especially if you happen to write heaps of messages per day.
That's where a tip from the Gmail team comes in handy. Instead of having to go through the small compose window to open the larger window, you can simply hold down the Shift key while clicking on the compose button to launch it right away. This not only works when you click on compose, but also when you want to reply to an email that you have received. Just hold down the Shift key and click on the reply button to open the same larger compose window on the Gmail website.
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