Different ways how to copy and paste on Mac

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avatar logo 02 Nov at 10:21

Have bought Mac and want to copy and paste on Mac but oops… something isn’t working correctly. You check the shortcut that used to work on your Windows computer and try once again to copy and paste the text. And again you fail. You begin to worry about how to copy and paste on Mac computer the text you need and start the query in your browser “How to copy and paste on Mac keyboard?”. It turns out that Mac shortcuts differ from Windows shortcuts and that you can copy and paste not only plain text or a graphics document. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? So, if you want to learn how to do this, read below.


Table of content

  1. The easiest way how to copy and paste on a Mac
  2. How to change shortcuts for copy and pasting
  3. How to copy and paste on MacBook via right-click
  4. How to copy and paste on a Mac computer file and folder names
  5. How to copy and paste the icon from one file to another
  6. How to copy and paste a picture on a Mac
  7. How to copy and paste on Mac keyboard if it doesn't work
  8. How to cut and paste on Mac in Finder


The easiest way how to copy and paste on a Mac

Of course, the easiest way is to use Mac shortcuts. So, if you have just moved to Mac, you need to get used to new hotkeys. So, how to copy and paste on MacBook Air or another Mac machine using hotkey? The answer is very simple:

  1. Use Command(⌘) + C key combination in order to copy the desired text.
  2. Use Command(⌘) + V key combination in order to paste the received copy into another document or in any message.
The easiest way how to copy and paste on a Mac

How to change shortcuts for copy and pasting

However, if you feel uncomfortable to always think about the right shortcut, you can change it and to make it Windows like or whatever you want. Wondering how? Read below for further information.

  1. Go to the computer settings. Move the mouse cursor to the upper left corner of the screen, and click on the apple icon;
  2. From the drop-down menu select the item "System preferences"/"Keyboard"/"Keyboard Shortcuts";
  3. Click on “Modifier Keys”;
  4. Go to the “Command” field;
  5. Click on the drop-down menu;
  6. Select “Control”;
  7. Click “OK”.
How to change shortcuts for copy and pasting

How to copy and paste on MacBook via right-click

  1. Select the desired text/file/folder;
  2. Right-click it. Like an option, you can invoke the context menu by holding Ctrl + left-clicking the mouse;
  3. From the context menu select “Copy”;
  4. Go to the place where you want to insert it;
  5. Right-click there and choose Paste from the context menu.
How to copy and paste on MacBook via right-click

How to copy and paste on a Mac computer file and folder names

  1. For example, you want to create a folder for a specific file, as well as other files associated with it. If so, follow the steps below:
  2. Select the required folder;
  3. Press Command(⌘) + C;
  4. After that press Command(⌘) + Shift(⇧) + N;
  5. When the name of the new folder for your "folder" is highlighted, press Command(⌘) + V.
How to copy and paste on a Mac computer file and folder names

How to copy and paste the icon from one file to another

Attaching icons, for example, "Utilities" to a particular folder is a quite simple task.

  1. Select "Utilities" in the Applications folder;
  2. Press Command(⌘) + C;
  3. Mark the folder you want to assign the icon to;
  4. Press Command + I to open the information window;
  5. Now at the top of the window that appears, select the folder icon you like and press Command(⌘) + V.

How to copy and paste a picture on a Mac

To copy an image on the Internet you need to call the context menu and select the option "Copy image". To paste an image, open any graphics editor (Pages, Word, etc.) and press Command(⌘) + V. However, if the image is not copied, you can take a screenshot and save it to the clipboard. In case, if you do not know how to screenshot on Mac for this case, here is the brief info:

  1. Command(⌘) + Ctrl + Shift(⇧) + 3 - a screenshot of the whole screen.
  2. Command(⌘) + Ctrl + Shift(⇧) + 4 - a screenshot of a certain area of ​​the screen.

After that do the above procedure with a graphical editor and Command(⌘) + V.

How to copy and paste on Mac keyboard if it doesn't work

For most Mac users, the "copy-paste" process is an integral part of daily computer work. Even if you did not encounter such an issue, you can imagine how unpleasant it is when the function stops working, or the clipboard hangs. Do not worry, this problem can be solved quickly and easily.

  1. Close all programs on your Mac where the copy-paste function is malfunctioning.
  2. Open Activity Monitor, which is located in Utilities. You can also press Command(⌘) + Spacebar and enter "Activity Monitor" in the search bar.
  3. In the search bar of the program itself, enter "pboard" without inverted commas.
  4. Click on the "pboard" process, and then click on the (X) icon in the top menu. After that, select "Force Quit".
  5. Close Activity Monitor.

Now run some program in which the function did not work, and try using the "copy-paste" command.

If the above method didn’t work you can always use Terminal:

  1. Open the Terminal program, which is also in Utilities;
  2. Type the following command: killall pboard;
  3. Press Enter.

The command will restart the "pboard" process responsible for the clipboard in Mac OS. If nothing happens, restart the Mac.

How to cut and paste on Mac in Finder

  1. Right-click on the desired file and select “Copy” option.
  2. Go to the folder to which you want to transfer the file, right-click and hold the Option (⌥) key.
  3. The title “Paste Item” directly on your eyes will change to “Move Item Here”. Select this option.
  4. The file will be moved from the previous storage location to the new one. In this case, no "duplicate" will not be created.
  5. The same procedure can be done with the help of a keyboard command. To copy, use Command(⌘) + C, to transfer the file - Command(⌘) + Option (⌥) + V.

In order to make this process even easier, you can install a third party application on your computer, like Commander One. Thanks to its dual-panel interface the whole process of copy and pasting can be done without opening a large number of tabs and absolutely hassle-free. If you are looking for a perfect file manager, we would recommend you to take a closer look at this app. Another great app, if you constantly deal with cloud storages and you need to copy and paste the files back and force, then CloudMounter is what you have been looking for. The app has a flawless integration into Finder and allows you to save free space on your computer without duplicating the content of your cloud to your computer.

That’s it. We hope that you have found the answers to your question after reading this article and have a seamless copy and paste.

Commander One for Mac

This dual panel file manager for Mac is fully compatible with MacOS 10.10 and later. Requires 19.75MB free space, latest version 1.7.4(2445). Released 22nd Sep, 2017.

4.5 rank based on 89+ users , Reviews (15)
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