Copy and paste is one of the best features we have at our fingertips, especially when combined with keyboard shortcuts. You can’t argue that copying and pasting is one of the most common things we all do, no matter what technical skill you might have.
But there has always been a gap in the copy and paste method. That is that once you copy something, you better intend to paste it somewhere else right away or you might forget and overwrite it. Why can’t there be a larger capacity on the clipboard – seems pretty simple, I’d say. There are, however, programs that can provide this function for you.
The subject of clipboard management utilities is no scarce topic on MakeUseOf. In fact, there have been several articles in the past that have featured some of the best. However, residing in the comments of those articles have been some excellent suggestions of programs made by you, the readers. So below, here are six excellent clipboard management utilities which are all unique in their own way.
Kana Clip is a free, simple, portable and compact program. It functions via the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Alt + Insert (occasionally abbreviated “ins”). You can see in the screenshot above what the context menu looks like and there are some options that branch off it as well.
Currently Kana Clip is Windows-only. It’s features include adding the current time and date managing the permanent clips, using permanent clips to add predefined text and create sub menus to manage text better, refreshing the clipboard monitoring process if interrupted by another program and hiding the system tray icon.
Kana Clip was recommended in the comments of the article 4 Great Alternative Clipboard Managers For Windows.
Recommended by a reader in the comments of the MakeUseOf article, The 3 Best Clipboard Managers For Windows, Clip History is a great option if you want more of an interface than what Kana Clip provides. The left pane is the History – what you’ve recently copied to the clipboard. The right pane is known as Stickies, or permanent clips, which can’t be overwritten like the history. This is great for things that you know you will need to access further in the future, such as canned email responses.
One feature that really stands out with Clipboard History is how it handles links. Have you ever received a link in a message that was so long it was broken up and was no longer hyperlinked? No worries. Just copy the entire link, Clipboard History will join the link back together and all you have to do is paste it into your browser and go.
Clipboard history is available for Windows and is also capable of being run off a USB device, such as a flash drive or portable hard drive.
PhaseExpress is a very full-featured clipboard managing utility. It has a tree-style folder structure for managing all sorts of folders. It came with some preset categories, but you can add and remove any to customize it to your own liking.
This isn’t just a basic clipboard manager, but a text manager and autocompleter. You can use it to store any used phrases that you’d ever want to reuse or that you commonly use. There are so many settings, that to cover it thoroughly, a whole article has to cover it.
Although there have been a couple of articles on MakeUseOf about PhaseExpress, it was also recommended in the comments of the article 4 Great Alternative Clipboard Managers For Windows.
If you’re a Windows Sidebar fan, this one is for you. Clipboard Manager is an awesome gadget which has lightly been covered and mentioned in a couple of articles on MakeUseOf as well as being recommended by you in the comments.
I was quite impressed at the overall usability. Like all gadgets, you just download and add it to the sidebar and it’s ready to use. No installation needed.
Clipboard Manager is the only utility so far in this article that has been compatible with both images and text, which was a nice surprise. Of course you can customize the color, history capacity, font size as well as several other options.
Clipboard Manager was suggested to us in the comments of 4 Great Alternative Clipboard Managers For Windows and Tina covered briefly it in 2010 as well.
CtrlSee is a Windows-only clipboard management program that supports images, along with being very simple. The preferences only contain a hotkey, opacity, startup and clear all history options. If you are looking for an easy-to-use, simple utility that specializes in both text and images, CtrlSee – suggested to us in the 4 Great Alternative Clipboard Managers For Windows article – is the utility to get the job done.
Hamsin Clipboard is somewhat between some of the others that have been previously mentioned already. It has an abundant amount of features, with the lack of any real user interface aside from the configuration window and context menus. That said, it’s a very powerful utility controlled through hotkeys (keyboard shortcuts) and pop up menu via the tray icon.
To give you an idea of what all it can do, below are the three images displaying each of the tabs in the configuration window.
Hamsin Clipboard tracks the history of the last 10 clips and can paste several copied clips automatically one after the other or even merged together. It also can save favorite or commonly used clips for future use.
Hamsin Clipboard is Windows only.
4 More Awesome Utilities
Save.me’s UI (user interface) is the first thing you’ll notice – and it is quite easy to use. The second thing you’ll notice is the abundant features, despite its simplicity. There is certainly a good balance of both and it is a well rounded program. There’s not enough room to do a complete review of it here, but Craig did an excellent walkthrough article on it.
Whenever you copy a link, text or image, it is displayed in the preview column to the right. But what is more impressive is that when links are copied, the preview isn’t just a link or even a snapshot of the page, but completely interactive. This means if you want to select more info through the page and copy it, you can. Not to mention you can click links, even play videos.
This text and image clipboard utility is probably one of the most well-known in this category. It is operated through the tray icon or hotkeys. Ditto has been mentioned twice previously on MakeUseOf (4 Great Alternative Clipboard Managers For Windows and The 3 Best Clipboard Managers For Windows) and it deserves to be mentioned again.
There are a lot of customizations that you can access by right clicking the tray icon and going to Options. From that same context menu you can access the Global Hot Keys, import clips, add new clips, access the help window and disconnect Ditto from the clipboard.
Ditto is for Windows and portable as well.
xNeat Clipboard Manager [No Longer Available]
A simple modern interface with only the necessary functions – that’s what xNeat Clipboard Manager is. Previously covered here on MakeUseOf, xNeat Clipboard Manager offers the barebones essentials without a barebones interface. What you see at the top is the settings. Not much right?
That’s because for the basics of a clipboard manager you really don’t need a whole lot of settings. The majority of the settings usually are overwhelming to the average user and they tend to just stop using those programs altogether.
With the simple keyboard command Ctrl + Shift + V, you instigate a context menu with the past 10 (or more) items in the history of your clipboard. Note that both the keyboard command and maximum history size can be adjusted.
ControlC is different from all of the other utilities covered in this article. It is a clipboard manager that allows you to store your data in the cloud. The installation is very fast and you must create a password before using (don’t forget it!).
Once it’s running, start copying away. You can see what is all on your clipboard by left-clicking on the tray icon. There are some advanced search options and you can see that ControlC supports images, text and files.
ControlC is compatible with Windows. More can be read about ControlC and other similar programs in Saikat’s article, How To Store Your Clipboard Data & Share It Online.
There are more than just ten clipboard management utilities and perhaps you use one that is not on this list. But, likely it’s on MakeUseOf somewhere. Below are a few more clipboard management utilities that we’ve written about:
Do you currently use a clipboard management tool? Did you even know there was an option for such? I can tell you that when I started using one, it changed how I used any text-based program. Share your thoughts and experiences of using a clipboard manager with us in the comments.
Image Credit: Clipboard Keyboard Icon via Shutterstock