Clipboards and a pencil

The Clipboard – Easy 2-Minute Guide

You might be aware that to copy and paste something in Windows (like text), we can use the keyboard shortcuts, Ctrl + C and Ctrl + V. But where does stuff get copied? In Windows 10, it gets copied to the Clipboard. It’s helpful to have this Clipboard to copy something to and paste it somewhere else. However, if we copy something else again, it replaces the thing we copied before. Not so ideal if we have to copy and paste more than one item repeatedly. In Windows 10 now, there is a way to see the Clipboard and make it remember more than one thing. Here’s how:

1. Press the Windows key + V to open Clipboard.

Clipboard - Turn on. (How to use the Clipboard)

If you haven’t used the Clipboard before, it will read, `Can’t show history. See all your copied items in one place! Turn on clipboard history now.’

2. Press Turn on

Your clipboard is empty (How to use the Clipboard)

The clipboard turns on but is empty. Close it for now, and let’s test it by copying and pasting something to it.

3. Go ahead and copy some text. (Highlight some text and press Ctrl + C, or right-click the highlighted text and choose Copy.)

Highlighted text right-click menu

4. Open the Clipboard again by pressing Windows key + V.

Clipboard with highlighted text

The highlighted text you copied will now appear on the Clipboard. If you go ahead and repeat the copying process with something different, more copied items will be saved.

Clipboard with more content

5. Select any item in the list, and it will be ready to paste (Ctrl + V) into another document, email, or what have you. To test this, you could press F3 or Ctrl + F now (to open the browser search box) and paste (Ctrl + V) your text item there.

How to save the list for another day?

If you don’t tell the Clipboard to save your items, they will be removed when your PC or Windows device is turned off. Usually, that’s not a problem, but what if you want to continue pasting some items tomorrow or in the future? What you need to do is pin those items.

6. Pin an item to keep it for the future by first clicking on the small dots at the top-right of that item.

Clipboard dropdown menu

A dropdown menu appears with three options, Delete, Pin, and Clear all. As you might expect, selecting Delete will remove that item from the Clipboard. Choosing Clear all will remove everything. To keep something, even if you switch off the PC, select Pin. If you pin an item, it will stay on the Clipboard indefinitely until you choose to unpin it.

7. Unpin an item to stop saving it for the future, by selecting Unpin from the item’s dropdown menu.

Unpin Clipboard item

More Windows 10 Clipboard Settings

Clipboard has its own settings section. To find it, press Start and type Clipboard. In the search results, click on Clipboard settings.

Windows Search for Clipboard

8. Sync your Clipboard data. The Clipboard settings screen only has a few options, including turning on the Clipboard history and Clear data, which we have learned about already. Notice the Sync across devices toggle. If you toggle Sync across devices on, your Clipboard data will be synced with your Microsoft account, ready to be pasted via a different Windows device that’s using the same Microsoft account. So, you can copy and paste the same data across your various Windows devices. Don’t forget to pin the essential items for another day; else, you will lose them.

Also, remember that anyone with access to your device can see everything on your list if they open the Clipboard (Windows key + V).

Windows Clipboard settings

That’s about it for how to use the clipboard in Windows 10. If you often need to copy and paste things, the pinning option can undoubtedly come in useful. Why not be the first to leave a comment. How often do you use the Clipboard in Windows 10, and why?


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