How to Use the Clipboard in Windows 10

The modern clipboard offers a synced history of copied items

What to Know

  • Copy to clipboard: Highlight the text or image and press Ctrl+C or right-click the text or image and select Copy in the pop-up menu.
  • Paste from clipboard: Press Ctrl+V to paste the last copied item. Paste from clipboard history: Press Windows key+V and select item to paste.
  • Clear clipboard: Press Windows key+V. Select X in the corner of an item to delete it or select Clear all to remove all items.

This article explains how to use the clipboard in Windows 10. In addition to information on copying, pasting, and clearing the clipboard, it includes information on pinning items to the clipboard.

How to Copy Content to the Windows 10 Clipboard

The clipboard in the Windows 10 operating system is more advanced than the previous clipboard experience. With the new clipboard, you can view the text and images that are copied to the clipboard and choose which content you want to paste.

In addition, the new clipboard can sync to other Windows 10 computers and tablets that use the same Microsoft account login. This means you can copy images and text from one Windows 10 device and paste to another device.

The Windows clipboard

Basic copying of content to the clipboard on Windows 10 can be done using either of the following methods.

  • Highlight the chosen text or image within an app and press Ctrl+C.
  • Right-click text or images and select Copy from the pop-up menu.

How to Paste From the Clipboard on Windows 10

To paste the last copied content from the clipboard into an app, use either of the two standard paste methods:

  • Press Ctrl+V.
  • Right-click where you want to paste the content and select Paste from the pop-up menu.

By using the modern Windows 10 clipboard functionality, though, you can choose from several previously copied entries from the clipboard history.

Only images smaller than 4 MB save to the Windows 10 clipboard.

To view the clipboard history, press Windows key+V.

Windows 10 clipboard history.

After the clipboard open, scroll up or down to find the text or image and select it to paste it into the open app.

How to Clear Clipboard Data

Deleting text and images from the Windows 10 clipboard can be done in three ways.

  • Open the clipboard by pressing Windows key+V and then select the X in the upper-left corner of each item you want to delete.
  • Open the clipboard by pressing Windows key+V and then select Clear all. This deletes every item in the Windows 10 clipboard except for the items that you pinned.
  • Open Settings > System > Clipboard and select Clear. This deletes everything in the Windows 10 clipboard except for pinned items.
Windows 10 clipboard with cleared content.

Pin Windows 10 Clipboard Text

While clearing clipboard content can be useful, there may be some content that you don't want to delete. Manually select specific items and protect those items from deletion by pinning them.

Pinned content within the Windows 10 clipboard feature.

To pin clipboard content, press Windows key+V to open the clipboard and then select the small pin icon to the right of the text and images you want to preserve. If done correctly, the horizontal pin icon should tilt to a 45-degree angle.

To unpin clipboard text or images, click on the pin icon again.

When as item is pinned, it is protected every time you clear the clipboard in the future.

Was this page helpful?