Paste Special is a feature gives you more control of how the content is displayed or functions when pasted from the clipboard. Paste special is typically found in Office Suites such as Microsoft Office and OpenOffice, and is very commonly used in Word, Excel, Writer, and Calc to provide special formatting or calculations when pasting content into a document.
For example, text copied from a Web page often retains much or all of the HTML formatting, which may not match the colors, fonts, or other text formatting being used in the document. By using Paste Special, you can choose to paste unformatted text (doesn't have a different font, isn't bold, doesn't contain links, etc.). Below is an example of the choices that are offered when using Paste Special in OpenOffice.org Writer.
This allows you several choices of how the text will be formatted when pasted. In the same way, you can use this command in Excel or Calc to copy formulas and calculations when pasting data into cells.
How to use Paste special
From the File menu, click Edit and then choose Paste special or Paste text. This will open a dialog box similar to the above example. If you want to paste text that is not formatted, click Unformatted text or Plain text.
In new versions of Microsoft Office when pasting text a paste box will appear in the bottom corner of the pasted text, as shown in the picture to the right. Clicking this box or pressing the Ctrl key will open the Paste Options for that text. In these options you'll have the option to Keep Source formatting (K), Merge formatting (M), and Keep Text Only (T) that will only paste the text without any formatting.
Tip: In most versions of Windows Ctrl + Windows Key + V will also often paste text as plain text.
- Tip for pasting text without formatting in every program.
- How to copy text and images from a web page.
Also see: Paste