When you copy, cut or otherwise move data from one place on a computer, regardless of whether the data is text, a hyperlink, an image or anything else, a copy of the data is saved in an invisible portion of the computer’s memory. The place where the data you copy, cut or otherwise move from one place on a computer is stored is known as the computer’s Clipboard. Every single piece of data you copy during one session of use on a computer is stored on its Clipboard, and the Clipboard resets every time the computer is shut down and then booted back up again. A computer’s Clipboard is what enables the user to freely copy or move data from one place to another, even going as far as to allow data to be freely moved between different applications.
On a Windows computer, when you press Ctrl + V the last piece of data you copied or moved from another place is copied over or moved to where you pressed the Paste shortcut. However, what if you need something you copied or moved that was not the last piece of data you copied or moved? This is where the Clipboard steps in – you can simply view your Clipboard, locate what you require and copy the data over from the Clipboard. Windows XP came with a pre-installed Clipboard Viewer (clipbrd.exe) that could be used to view the entire Clipboard of a computer running on Windows 10. However, unfortunately, none of the iterations of the Windows Operating System that have been created and released after Windows XP have come with built-in Clipboard viewing or managing utilities.
Built-in Clipboard History
But with the release of the October 2018 update for Windows 10 (Version 1809), Microsoft has introduced this functionality in Windows 10- the latest and greatest in the long line of Windows Operating Systems. For details about the built-in Clipboard, please visit the official Microsoft page.
Currently, the built-in clipboard history only supports text, HTML, and images less than 4 MB in size. To enable it, perform the following steps:
- Press Windows key and clipboard settings. Then in the resulting list, click on clipboard settings.
- Then toggle the switch of Clipboard History to On.
- If you want to sync clipboard to other devices, then toggle its switch to on.
- If you want to automatically sync the Clipboard history or want to sync the selected one, then enable the crossposting option.
Although office applications like MS Word have a built-in clipboard which can be used in the applications. You can bring that on by clicking on Clipboard on the Home menu of the application.
So what do Windows 10 users have to do to be able to take a look at their Clipboard history other than the built-in clipboard? Well, the following are the methods you can use to view your Clipboard history on a Windows 10 computer:
Method 1: Download and Use the Clipboard App
There exists on the Windows Store a Clipboard app that has been designed to allow Windows 10 users to share data they copy or move while using their computers to and from their respective Clipboards by sharing them using Windows 10’s Share charm. The Clipboard app is extremely simple and is also in every single Windows 10 user’s reach, so downloading and using it to view your Clipboard history is an extremely easy process. To use this method to view your Clipboard history, you need to:
- Open the Windows Store.
- Search for the clipboard app.
- Locate an app in the search results simply titled Clipboard and select it.
- Make sure that it is the right app – it is completely free to download and is published by Justin Chase.
- Click on Get the app to download and install it.
- Wait for the Clipboard app to be successfully downloaded and installed on your computer.
- Once the Clipboard app has been successfully downloaded and installed, launch it and use it to not only view your Clipboard history but also to easily share data to and from your Windows 10 computer’s Clipboard.
Method 2: Download and use Clipdiary
If the Clipboard app that is readily available on the Windows Store doesn’t fulfill your requirements or you simply don’t like it for some reason, fear not – you still have one other option in the form of the myriad of third-party Clipboard viewers and managers that are available for Windows 10. One of the best Clipboard viewing and managing programs designed for Windows 10 out there is one that goes by the name Clipdiary. Clipdiary is completely free and can be used to do everything from taking a look at every single thing you have copied to your computer’s Clipboard during your current session to deleting or editing specific Clipboard entries. And of course, you can use Clipdiary to freely copy things over from your computer’s Clipboard. To download and use Clipdiary to view your Clipboard history on Windows 10, you need to:
- Click here to download a copy of Clipdiary.
- Wait for the file to be downloaded.
- The downloaded file is going to be executable, so as soon as it has been successfully downloaded, navigate to where it was downloaded to and double-click on it to run it.
- With Clipdiary running, all you need to do is press Ctrl + D and it will pop up for you. You can then not only look at your Clipboard history but also retrieve things you have copied on to the Clipboard or edit your Clipboard history.
Clipdiary supports everything you could want to copy over to your computer’s Clipboard – from text and images to HTML links and even the names of files on your computer that you have copied on to the Clipboard.