ShapeShifter, Lightweight Windows Clipboard Replacement

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 7, 2010
Updated • Aug 8, 2012
Software, Windows, Windows software

The clipboard acts as a temporary storage location for data that is copied to it by a computer user. The standard Windows Clipboard can only store one entry, which gets overwritten every time new data is copied. That makes some operations, where multiple sets of data need to be copied more complex than necessary.

ShapeShifter is a lightweight Windows Clipboard replacement that comes with a few extras that not all alternative clipboard managers offer.

The software works with the standard clipboard commands. Ctrl-C will copy data into the clipboard, and CTRL-V will paste it again. This works with text, media, files and any other kind of data. Even program specific data formats are supported by ShapeShifter.

The clipboard manager stores all data sets in the program database. To paste a specific set, the user would press CTRL-V for some time, which opens the selection menu. Here it is possible to select one of the clipboard entries with the cursor keys on the keyboard or the mouse wheel.

Letting go of the keys pastes the selected data set into the active window or program. ShapeShifter displays additional information about each Clipboard entry in the selection menu. Each entry is represented by an icon and additional information including the program it was copied from, to improve the identification of each data set in the menu.

shapeshifter windows clipboard replacement
shapeshifter windows clipboard replacement

ShapeShifter's memory usage is relatively low when minimized in the System Tray, and peaks only shortly whenever the selection menu is launched.

Windows users who are looking for a solid Clipboard replacement for their operating system should give it a try. The program is offered as a 32-bit and 64-bit edition at the developer website.

Update: The Shapeshifter website is no longer available and it seems as if program development has been discontinued. Interested users can download the latest version of the clipboard manager from Softpedia.

Update 2: Shapeshifter has been resurrected, you can find the updated review of the Windows Clipboard manager here.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. Martin said on March 12, 2023 at 3:05 pm

    An even quicker way to open Task Manager is by pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc.

  2. archie bald said on March 12, 2023 at 4:32 pm

    Win+Pause used to be the goto shortcut for me since… W95… Ms recently hijacked it and you now get Sysinfo. Device manager is still accessible this way: the second to last link at the bottom.

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