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How to View Clipboard (copy-paste) History on Mac

Where is Clipboard on Mac?

The clipboard is the place where your Mac stores the item you most recently copied.

You can see what’s stored there by opening Finder and then choosing Edit > Show Clipboard.

When you do this, a small window will pop up and show you what’s being stored and what type of content it is. For example, my clipboard contains a sentence of plain text, but it can also store images or files.

To copy something to the clipboard, select it and then press Command + C, and to paste it press Command + V.

This clipboard feature is pretty limited since you can only see one thing at a time and you can’t recover old items that you’ve copied.


Paste – Clipboard manager for Mac, iPhone, and iPad


Paste is the best clipboard manager for Mac and iOS. It stores everything you copy and paste on Mac, iPhone, or iPad and keeps your clipboard history organized. Extend clipboard capacity and keep everything you copy across all devices organized. Copy and paste smarter.

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Paste, or paste and match style

First click to place your insertion point, then use one of these steps to paste your copied item at that location. When you paste and match style, the pasted item matches the font, color, size, or other style of the surrounding content. 


Press Command-V.  Or choose Edit > Paste from the menu bar. Or Control-click (or right-click) the item you selected, then choose Paste from the shortcut menu.

Paste and Match Style

Press Option-Shift-Command-V. Or choose Edit > Paste and Match Style from the menu bar.

Clipboard History on Mac – How to recover text from …


2016-8-29 · Clipboard Mac history is your first choice. As a Mac clipboard enhancement program, it is fully compatible with all applications – easily copy and paste into and out of other applications.

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How to Clear Clipboard on Mac -3 Ways

If you want to clear Clipboard on Mac, you can try the 3 ways.

Way 1. Restart your Mac computer to clear Clipboard. Since Clipboard history is stored in computer system RAM, restarting computer will clear everything and release the used RAM.

Way 2. Go to Finder -> Applications -> Terminal. Type pbcopy < /dev/null in Terminal, and press Return key.

Way 3. Open any text file on your Mac computer. Select the space between two words or any blank area and press Command + C shortcut. Your Mac Clipboard history will be cleared.

How to Paste into Command Prompt | Enable Copy-Paste in CMD How to paste into Command Prompt? Learn how to enable copy and paste in Windows 10 Command Prompt to paste command in CMD. Read More

How to paste on a Mac or MacBook

  1. As above, you need to first select the text or object you want to copy or cut by pressing Command + C to copy, or Command + X to cut.
  2. Put the cursor where you want to place the text/object, and Paste by pressing Command + V.

Note that the target can be in a different document, or even an entirely different application. Or even on a different device, for that matter – we’ll explain how you can copy and paste from your Mac to your iPhone or vice versa below.

Top Third-party Clipboard Managers for Mac

As stated above, if you’d like to view clipboard history on Mac, you have to turn to another third-party application.


Paste is a clipboard manager for Mac and iOS. It keeps everything you copy and paste on your Mac and lets you access clipboard history on Mac.


Unclutter is another handy Mac clipboard manager that tracks what you copy and paste on your computer and lets you browse your clipboard history on Mac.

How to copy multiple items on Mac

If you are coming to Mac from Windows you may be wondering if you can copy multiple items to your Clipboard on your Mac so that you can choose what you want to paste.

Unfortunately the Mac doesn’t offer this feature (although we’d love to see it arrive in macOS 12.)

On a PC you can copy up to 24 items from Office documents to the Office Clipboard and paste them into a document, choosing what you want to paste from the task pane. 

Part 2. How to View and Manage Clipboard History on Mac

You can view what had been copied on the Clipboard. The steps below will show you how you can view the clipboard.

Step 1. Create a New Document

To create a new document, you can go to the Launchpad to open TextEdit. Then click on the New Document tab.

Step 2. Type in Some Text

Step 2. Type in Some Text

Type in some text on your new document. Then highlight the text and right-click on it. Select Copy from the drop-down menu.

Step 3. Select Show Clipboard

Step 3. Select Show Clipboard

Now, go to Finder on the top menu and click on the Edit tab. A drop-down list will appear. Select Show Clipboard. Once you click on that option from the drop-down list, you will be able to view the clipboard and whatever text that’s saved in it.

Various Clipboard Managers to Consider

Various Clipboard Managers to Consider

Does clipboard have a history limit? Unfortunately, you won’t be able to find everything you had copied to the clipboard. The clipboard on Mac only saves the most recent item you had copied on to it.

In order to view all clipboard history on Mac, you would have to use some clipboard managers to keep all the items copied to the clipboard. These are utilities that can end up saving you a tremendous amount of time.

Clipboard managers come in handy because they allow you to store and access multiple clippings in just one file. It works great, giving a history of things that you have copied and pasted.

Here are three of the clipboard managers you can consider for you Mac.

  • Flycut is a multiple clipboard saving app. It keeps a history of what you have copied. It can save up to 100 times in your clipboard. It can also paste them as well.
  • CopyClip creates a multi-clip keyboard a multi-clip environment where you have the last thing that you have copied and pasted available to you. it only stops everything once you have run the clean option.
  • Clippy is open-source and easy to use. It allows you to see clippings on your menu bar. You can see a maximum of 15 clippings at a time.

Part 4. Conclusion

You can now save a lot of time when you’re copying and pasting from one document to another. With the added feature on certain Mac, you can even copy and paste from one device to another. With the various clipboard managers, you can easily view your clipboard history on Mac.

With a comprehensive cleaning tool like the iMyMac PowerMyMac, you’re sure that your Mac is running at its peak at all times.

How do you usually copy and paste on your Mac? Feel free to share some of your tips and tricks. Our readers would love to hear from you.