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Mac Tech

How To Copy And Paste On Mac

Dan King
Dan King

Table of Contents

Copying and pasting is one of the most common things we do on our devices.  A Mac makes it easy using keyboard shortcuts.  We will take a look at these shortcuts but we will also look at a few lesser-known ways of copying and pasting on your Mac.

How to Copy and Paste on Mac Using Keyboard Shortcuts


Here is the commonly used keyboard shortcut for Copy:

  1. First, choose the text or image you would like to copy:
Selected text in Apple Pages

2. Next, press Command + C

Apple keyboard Copy command

3.  You can also choose Edit on the menu bar and choose Copy

Apple Mac Edit menu Copy command

This will save your copied data temporarily.


Here is the command for Paste:

  1. Choose the place you would like to paste the copied text or image.
Apple Pages document with text

2.  Press Command + V

Apple keyboard Paste command

3.  You can also choose Edit from the menu bar and then choose Paste.

Mac Edit menu with Paste command highlighted

Your text or image will be pasted in the place you have chosen.

How to Copy and Paste on Mac Using the Trackpad or Mouse

You can also use the trackpad or mouse to copy and paste items. We will go through both options for each of these steps.


  1. Choose the text you would like to copy
  2. If you are using an Apple Mouse you can press Control on your keyboard + click your mouse button.  If you are using a mouse with a right button, you can right click to bring up the shortcut menu.


   If you are using the trackpad on a MacBook or MacBook Pro you can tap the         trackpad with two fingers to bring up the shortcut menu.

Mac Command-click Copy command

3.  Again Control-click with your mouse or tap your trackpad with two fingers to bring up the shortcut menu and choose Paste.

Mac Command-click Paste command

Your temporarily saved data will be pasted in the location of your choosing.

How to Copy and Paste to a Mac from an iPhone

First make sure Handoff is enabled on your iPhone.  To enable Handoff, follow these steps:

  1. Tap Settings
iPhone Settings icon highlighted

2.  Tap General

iPhone Settings General highlighted

3.  Tap Airplay & Handoff

iPhone AirPlay & Handoff highlighted

4.  If Handoff is not enabled, switch it on.

iPhone Handoff button highlighted

Now that you have enabled Handoff on your iPhone, lets learn how to Copy and Paste from our iPhone to our Mac.

  1. In the app you are using (we are using Apple Notes in this example) select the text you wish to copy.
  2. Highlight the text
  3. Using the popup menu, choose Select
iPhone Notes copied text Select option

4.  Once the text is selected, choose Share.  You will have to tap the right arrow twice to reach the Share option.

iPhone Notes selected text Share option

5.  Tapping the Share option brings up a menu where you can share to a number of places.  Here we are going to use AirDrop to share to our MacBook Pro.

6.  Tap AirDrop

iPhone Notes AirDrop selected text

7.  Since we have shared a piece of text, this creates a text document on the desktop of our MacBook.

MacBook Pro desktop text document

8.  Open the text document to see the text you have shared!

MacBook Pro TextEdit document with text

As you can see, there are a lot more options for copying and pasting on a Mac than you might think. There are other useful Mac features that you may not be fully aware of so be sure to check out some of our other guides.

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