For something so essential to everyday computing, the clipboard tool is actually pretty limited. After all these years, it can still only handle one thing at a time. Copy or cut something new, and the previous contents of the clipboard are lost. Fortunately, there are both Windows and Mac tools available that will let you upgrade your clipboard experience.
If you have a lot of snippets to save, CopyClip is a great clipboard manager for macOS. It keeps tabs on up to 230 recent clipboard items in text format, and keyboard shortcuts are automatically assigned to the most recent entries.
CopyClip is free to use, though you have to put up with some ads along the way; if you want to pay for an ad-free experience, try CopyClip 2. It also runs from the menu bar, but comes with a more modern-looking interface and a more advanced search feature.
Ditto for Windows doesn’t have the fanciest interface, but there’s a lot going on here: a clipboard history that goes back 999 items, the option to have items expire, support for keyboard shortcuts, a straightforward search feature, and a portable mode.
Open up the Ditto options pane to get an idea of the wealth of tweaks available in the app. It lives down in the notification area for easy access, and there’s also a special paste option included that lets you strip out certain bits of formatting as you move text around.
Copy’em Paste is going to set you back £8, but it’s easily one of the best clipboard managers for macOS. The app works with an unlimited amount of text and images, it lets you paste items in batches, and it also comes with a built-in screenshot tool.
You can get your saved clippings through the menu bar or via customisable keyboard shortcuts and drag-and-drop pasting is supported too. You can even split your clippings up into lists if you really want to take your clipboard management to the next level.
1Clipboard is one of the best options for both Windows and macOS, and it can work in a local, one-computer mode or integrate with Google Drive to give you access to your clippings across multiple machines.
You can star particular items, search through your clipboard history, and set up a custom keyboard shortcut too. It lacks the bells and whistles of some other programs, but it offers all the functionality that most users need.