Many software programs allow you to copy data, such as text in Microsoft Word or an image in Adobe Photoshop. To copy a piece of data, you need to first select it (or highlight it) and choose "Copy" from the Edit menu within the program. Most programs allow you to use the keyboard shortcut "Control-C" for Windows or "Command-C" for the Mac OS.

When you copy a piece of data, it is moved to a buffer in the system's memory called the "Clipboard." This is a temporary storage area in your computer's RAM that holds the most recent item that has been copied. Of course, copying isn't very helpful if you can't use the data somewhere else. To insert the copied data into a document, choose "Paste" from the Edit menu and the data will be pasted into the document.

For more information about copying and pasting, view the Help Center article.

Updated in 2006 by Per C.

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