Easy Ways to Copy and Paste

By Contributing Writer

Updated December 09, 2019

Some people remember learning how to type in high school before there were personal computers. Out of that fortuitous training came a group of people who were ready to use a computer and keyboard when they became available years later.

Windows operating systems and the programs that run on them use a common set of keystrokes for certain tasks that are universal. Copy and paste actions are among these. Examining the easy ways to copy and paste will help users develop habits that help improve keyboard use.

Copy and Paste Defined

‘Copy’ is simply the act of making a copy of an object or text. Being able to deposit the object or text that was copied is the sole function of the ‘paste’ command.

In Windows operating systems and programs, copy and paste is not only a part of the Windows experience as files and folders are moved with copy and paste commands, but also with text and objects in documents.

Methods for Copy and Paste

The standard copy and paste commands in the Windows operating environment are the keystrokes Control-c and Control-v. To use them, hold down the Control key and then press the C or V key to invoke the command.

Apart from keystrokes, the most common way to copy and paste involves the mouse. First you must select the object or text you want to copy. Follow this with a right-click on the mouse, which opens a small menu from which you can choose the "Copy" command. This action copies the object into the volatile memory of the PC. Paste is similar in execution: Right-click in the target location and choose "Paste" to deposit the copied item into the location of the mouse pointer.

Easy Way to Copy and Paste

Ultimately, the easier way to copy and paste comes down to user preference. Some prefer keystroke technique while others prefer the mouse.

In text documents, you must select the text before copying it. This can be performed with keystrokes as well, using the arrow and Shift keys, but many people use the mouse to select the text. If you use your right hand for mousing, the keyboard method works well because your left hand remains available to use the keystrokes to copy and paste. But if you use the mouse with your left hand it is more difficult because you have to put your left hand on the mouse to select the object and then move it back to the keyboard to perform the copy and paste.

For those who use computers for a majority of their work, the "Control-c" and "Control-v" keystrokes appear to be the easiest to use.