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How to Copy and Paste on a Mac

how to copy paste on mac

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Countless of us have transitioned from a Windows PC to a Mac because of the latter’s sleek design and user interface. Packed with a lot of features, it comes as no wonder that Mac is a great option for either a desktop or a laptop. For new Mac users, you might get a little confused about how to navigate macOS in the beginning – like how to copy and paste.

When using Windows, you combine the keys Control and C to copy and the keys Control and V to paste. The same combinations can be used to copy and paste in Mac, except that instead of using Control, you use the Command key. The Command key is located on the immediate left of the space bar on your keyboard.

How to Copy and Paste on Mac

How to Copy and Paste Using Your Keyboard

With these key combinations, you can move texts and images from one document to another. In Mac, you can also copy and paste objects from one device to another using its features. To simply cut, copy, and paste an object, here are the simple steps:

  1. Select or highlight the text, image, or any object you wish to cut or copy.
  2. To cut the object, press Command + X. To copy, press Command + C. Both commands will save the object in the pasteboard. The only difference is that once you paste the object, the Cut command will erase the item from the pasteboard while the Copy command will not.
  3. To paste, move and place the cursor to the desired location and press Command + V.

These shortcuts can be used not just in between documents but also in different applications. The same also applies to different devices. Aside from the key combinations, you can also copy and paste using these options located in the Edit menu. This is located in the menu bar found at the top of the screen.

How to Copy and Paste Using Your Mouse or Trackpad

Aside from using the keyboard shortcuts to copy and paste on Mac, you can also use your trackpad or mouse to do so. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Select or highlight the text, image, or any object you wish to cut or copy.
  2. Right-click to open the Edit dropdown menu. Choose Cut or Copy.
  3. Move and place the cursor to the desired location and right-click again. Select Paste and you’re done.

How to Match Copied Text to Destination Style

When copying and pasting text between documents and applications that are formatted in different styles, the outcome might look weird at first. This is because when you copy a text, you also copy its original format or style. To match the format of the destination document and make it look seamless, this is what you do:

  1. Select or highlight the text, image, or any object you wish to cut or copy from the original document or application.
  2. For keyboard shortcut, Press Command + X or Command + C. For mouse or trackpad shortcut, right-click to open the Edit dropdown menu and choose Cut or Copy.
  3. Go to the desired document or application where you wish to paste your text. For keyboard shortcut, press Command + Shift + V. For mouse or trackpad shortcut, right-click and open the Edit dropdown menu. Select the Paste and Match Style option.

How to Copy and Paste Between Apple Devices

One of the advantages of using Apple devices is its unique features like the Universal Clipboard. Launched with macOS Sierra, this feature allows users to copy and paste from a Mac to an iPhone or the other way around. Make sure that your iPhone is updated to iOS 10 or later and your Mac is updated to macOS Sierra or later to be able to access this feature.

Both the Mac and the iPhone should also be using the same iCloud account. Moreover, both devices should also pass the Continuity requirements. You should also check your settings in your Mac and ensure that the option to “Allow Handoff between this Mac and your iCloud devices” is turned on. In your iPhone, simply turn on the “Handoff” option in the General settings.

When copying and pasting between the two devices, make sure that your Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are both switched on. Simply copy from one device and paste on the other. It may take a few seconds for the item to paste depending on the memory. If it’s an image, it may take a bit longer.

Copying and pasting objects in Mac are only some of its most basic features. Once you discover the others, you might realize just what you’re missing out on. Mac must have something that others do not that makes a lot of people going for Mac instead of other brands. If you’re not using a Mac yet, maybe it’s time to make the switch.

Also read How to Create Templates in Microsoft Word for Mac

Kossi Adzo

Kossi Adzo

Kossi Adzo is a technology enthusiast and digital strategist with a fervent passion for Apple products and the innovative technologies that orbit them. With a background in computer science and a decade of experience in app development and digital marketing, Kossi brings a wealth of knowledge and a unique perspective to the Apple Gazette team.

2 thoughts on “How to Copy and Paste on a Mac

  1. Copy/Paste on my iPad isn’t what it used to be. It’s also difficult to highlight words. You get one chance, then if you highlight those same words again, it ‘lifts’ them off the page instead of doing a ‘copy.’ I don’t understand why navigating is so difficult now, but I’m most disappointed in Apple.

    Please do not Censor my comment.

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