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How to Copy, Cut and Paste in Windows XP and Vista.
( see also Drag and Drop in Windows and How to use a Laptop Touchpad)



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When using your computer, knowing how to copy, cut and paste is vital to enable you to move data between one application and another or copy and move files and directories from one location to another. The examples shown here are for Microsoft Windows operating systems - XP and Vista etc - but the concept is similar for Linux and Apple operating systems.

The Windows Clipboard is utilised to perform these actions.The clipboard gives Windows users the ability to store information in memory and then retrieve that information for later use. Any data that is stored in the clipboard via a copy or cut command will stay there until it is overwritten by another copy or cut command. When you paste that data, the data is not removed from the clipboard, and can be pasted over and over as many times as wish. The data in the clipboard will be erased, though, when you shut down or restart your computer.

To Copy is to store in the clipboard a copy of a file, folder, text, program icon or image that has been selected in an application/program/open window or desktop. The original file, folder, text, program icon or image is not moved from it's original location.

To Cut is the same as Copy but the original file, folder, text, program icon or image is removed from it's original location.

To Paste is to place Copied or Cut items stored in the clipboard into new locations.

Items need to be highlighted or selected to perform copy and cut.

COPIED AND CUT ITEMS in one application/program/folder/directory can usually be PASTED into another application/program/folder/directory.


Examples.

Keyboard shortcut keys can be used to perform the actions for Copy, Cut and Paste as well as the methods shown below:

Copy = Ctrl + C
Cut = Ctrl + X
Paste = Ctrl + V

Copy, Cut and Paste in Microsoft Word Processor.

Text :

To copy the text "The Big Picture Show" typed into an MS Word Document opposite, it needs to be selected first.
Do one of the following:

1. Place the "Text Select" pointer over anywhere in the text and left click with the mouse 3 times quicky. Note: 3 clicks selects a paragraph - 1 click selects a word.

2. Place the "Text Select" pointer at the end of the text (just after the w opposite). Depress the left mouse button and drag to the left till all the text is highlighted. Release the mouse button and click it once.

To copy the text to the clipboard after selecting it do one of the following:

1. Place the mouse pointer over the text and right click. From the drop down menu click Copy ( opposite ).

2. Click on the "Edit" menu ( below) on the top toolbar and click on Copy.



 

           
To cut the text, select cut instead of copy in the above instructions and remember the text is copied to the clipboard but deleted from the document !.

To Paste the copied or cut text to a new position in the document :

Place the cursor in the document where you wish to paste the text.
Do one of the following:

1. Right click an empty area of the document and in the menu that appears click Paste.

2. Click on the "Edit" menu on the top toolbar and click Paste.

The text from the clipboard will appear in the document at the cursor position.


Copy, Cut and Paste an Image ( photograph,clipart or Autoshape etc ) in MS Word.
 To copy or cut the image click on it to select it (opposite) and then use the methods shown above for "Text" to copy or cut to the clipboard.

To Paste the copied or cut image to a new position in the document :

Do one of the following:

1. Right click an empty area of the document and in the menu that appears click Paste.

2. Click on the "Edit" menu on the top toolbar and click Paste.

Then move the image to the required position by 1.Selecting it
2. Place the mouse pointer over it - depress the left mouse button and drag to required position - release the mouse button.

 

Copy, Cut and Paste Files and Folders to move or copy them to another folder directory.

To copy the folder "Pictures" below in Windows Explorer (
it could be any file or folder in Windows Explorer, My Computer or in a programs "Save" dialogue box or "Open" dialogue box ).

1. Click on the file or folder - "Pictures in this instance.
2. Click the
Edit menu and click Copy as below.
or
1. Right Click
Pictures and click copy from the drop down menu.

 
 

To Paste a File or Folder into another Folder or Directory.

Simply open the folder or directory in Windows Explorer or My Computer and right click in an open area of the file window (above) and click Paste
. Or click on the edit menu and click Paste.

You can paste files and folders from one hard drive to another using the above method in Windows Explorer or My Computer.

You can Copy, Cut and Paste items from most locations onto your desktop for easy access.

 
You can for example click on the Start menu, then click All Programs, right click a program and select copy from the drop down menu to copy it to the clipboard. Right click an empty area of your desktop and click Paste to place a shortcut to the program on the desktop.

Once the basics of Copy,Cut and Paste are grasped you will find using the techniques invaluable during your computer activities.
 


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