Enable Copy and Paste in Command Prompt

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By default, Windows does not allow its users to paste text at the command prompt or copy text from the command prompt. But there is an option built into the CMD to enable this copy and paste feature at the Windows command prompt. In this article we show you an easy way to enable copy and paste text at the Windows command prompt.

Copy and paste is one of the options that users are very familiar with on Windows PCs. It makes the tasks very easy and fast. There will not be a single computer user who is not familiar with these copy and paste functions. But in any case, it doesn’t work in the command prompt window, where it is actually sometimes necessary to type long and not so simple commands.

How to Enable Copy and Paste in Command Prompt

  • Open the command prompt. The quickest way is to click the Windows key, type cmd and press Enter or click the application.
  • Right-click the title bar of the command prompt and choose Properties
  • Uncheck the box next to “Use existing console (requires reboot)”. This should automatically activate the “Enable Ctrl shortcuts” option.
  • Click OK.

You can now select text using the mouse or keyboard (hold down the “Shift” key and use the left or right arrows to select words). Press CTRL + C to copy it and press CTRL + V to paste it into the window. You can also simply paste the text you copied from another program into the command prompt using the same keystroke combination.

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This is not limited to text or commands, you can even copy and paste folder or file paths into the PDC. Anything you need to enter manually can be copied and pasted directly into your PDC.

How to Use Copy and Paste at the Command Prompt

To copy text to the clipboard, you have to extract a rectangular block of text – as usual, you cannot select text line by line. Position the mouse in the upper left-hand corner of the desired block of text, drag it to the lower right-hand corner, and then press Enter. While the text is being selected, the word “Select” appears in the window title. The command prompt window appears in white when you select text.

You can also select text from the window’s system menu. Click in the upper left corner of the window or press Alt+Space and then choose Edit, Select. Use the arrow keys to move the cursor to the upper left corner of the area you want to select, then press and hold Shift while you move the cursor to the lower right corner. Press Enter to copy the selected text.

You can paste text into a command prompt window using the same menu, except that to paste, you choose Edit, Paste.

Tip: You must remember the keyboard shortcut for Paste: Alt+Space, E, P.

By the way, “Cut” is not available – after typing something in a command prompt window, it is typed and cannot be deleted.


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