With the C and V keys being next to each other on an English keyboard, you may mistakenly press Ctrl+V (paste) instead of Ctrl+C. If you do this, anything in the clipboard is pasted over the highlighted text. To undo this mistake, press Ctrl+Z (undo).
- How to use the Ctrl+C keyboard shortcut.
- Ctrl+C in an Internet browser.
- Ctrl+C in Excel and other spreadsheet programs.
- Ctrl+C in Microsoft PowerPoint.
- Ctrl+C in Word and other word processors.
- Ctrl+C in a command line environment.
- Ctrl+C in the pico command.
- Related keyboard shortcuts and keys.
- Related pages.
- Computer keyboard shortcuts.
How to use the Ctrl+C keyboard shortcut
If you press these two keys with no text, files, or other objects highlighted, nothing is copied. Therefore, if you use the paste command, it outputs what was previously stored in the clipboard (if anything at all).
To copy all text in a field or a full page, use the Ctrl+A keyboard shortcut to select all text before using Ctrl+C to copy the text.
Ctrl+C in an Internet browser
In all major Internet browsers (e.g., Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Opera), pressing Ctrl+C copies any selected text.
Ctrl+C in Excel and other spreadsheet programs
Ctrl+C in Microsoft PowerPoint
Pressing Ctrl+C in Microsoft PowerPoint copies any highlighted text, picture, or other object to the clipboard.
Ctrl+C in Word and other word processors
Ctrl+C in a command line environment
While in a command line such as MS-DOS, Linux, and Unix, Ctrl+C is used to send a SIGINT signal, which cancels or terminates the currently-running program. For example, if a script or program is frozen or stuck in an infinite loop, pressing Ctrl+C cancels that command and returns you to the command line.
Ctrl+C in the pico command
In the pico command, Ctrl+C displays the current cursor position. For example, this command could be used to display the current line number.
Related keyboard shortcuts and keys
Below are links to related keyboard shortcuts and individual key pages.