CopyQ is an advanced Clipboard Manager - gHacks Tech News

CopyQ is an advanced Clipboard Manager

CopyQ is a cross-platform open-source clipboard manager for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X that is easy to use and quite powerful thanks to the advanced features that it offers.

Clipboard managers extend the functionality of the built-in clipboard function of the operating system. The clipboard on Windows is limited to a single entry which means that it erases the previously stored entry whenever a new one os copied.

Most clipboard managers remember multiple copied items and many offer additional functionality besides that.

CopyQ review

copyq clipboard manager

Windows users can run CopyQ as a portable program that does not require installation. The program stores anything that you copy to the Clipboard in its interface when you run it. Anything meaning plain and formatted text, HTML code, images, URLs and any plain text type of data.

You can access the data at any time and run operations such as edit, delete or preview on copied items. A built-in search is available with a tap on the F3-key on the keyboard to search the data set.

While you can use CopyQ this way exclusively, you may also use the program's support for tabs to separate clipboard items. Tabs are useful as you may use them for separation, for example, different work or school projects, or research topics. Since CopyQ saves the data across sessions, you may even use CopyQ for activities such as bookmarking that it is not designed for in first place.

CopyQ includes an editor

Preferences

CopyQ remembers 200 entries in history by default. You may change the number in the preferences.

copyq preferences

The program ships with a large set of options and settings. Some change the design and layout of the program, others its behavior and functionality.

Here is just a short list of preferences:

  • Add a tab tree and hide various items.
  • Disable the tray icon (so that you use it with shortcuts solely).
  • Disable program notifications.
  • Change the display format of specific items, e.g., images, text or notes.
  • Change program shortcuts.
  • Change colors and fonts.

You may notice that some keyboard shortcuts may interfere with program shortcuts.

Advanced clipboard operations

CopyQ supports advanced features such as sort options for clipboard entries, ignore rules for certain programs, password protection, advanced command line and scripting functions, or an option to sync tab items with files in a directory. A good starting point for these is the official program documentation.

The command line options that it provides are quite handy. Run copy q add "text1" "text2" to add text to the clipboard, copyq read 0 to print the content of the first item, or copyq --help to display the available command line arguments.

CopyQ supports exports and imports of the history. While that is not a full sync feature, it still gives you options to sync your clipboard data across devices or create a backup of the data for safekeeping.

Closing Words

CopyQ is a powerful clipboard manager that works well out of the box. Users who dig deeper get even more functionality and while some of it may seem overkill to most users, it certainly is useful to some.

Now You: Do you use a clipboard manager?

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Summary
software image
Author Rating
1star1star1star1star1star
3.5 based on 9 votes
Software Name
CopyQ
Software Category
Productivity
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Comments

  1. Gerard said on February 19, 2018 at 7:35 pm
    Reply

    Martin’s five stars are well deserved in my opinion. I don’t know about the Windows and Mac OS X builds, but the Linux build is by far the best clipboard manager for Linux distributions that I have seriously looked at. I have been using CopyQ for more than three years now and it has gotten better and better. Its “large set of options and settings” is a big plus. There are binary download packages for a number of Linux distributions and there is also a PPA.
    Highly recommended.

  2. Jonathan said on February 19, 2018 at 7:51 pm
    Reply

    I use Clipboard Fusion only because the add-on I was using in FF is no longer supported in the latest versions.I very well might try this one as it appears to offer allot of functions that I could use.

  3. dmacleo said on February 19, 2018 at 8:17 pm
    Reply

    I use ditto as I can store its database on nas or just allow networked computers to access clipboard if needed.
    http://ditto-cp.sourceforge.net/
    but is windows only sadly. source is published unsure if could be compiled for nix based

    1. Mark said on February 20, 2018 at 3:56 pm
      Reply

      Thanks for mentioning this great program. Look’s to have everything I need from a clipboard manager.

  4. Belga said on February 19, 2018 at 8:29 pm
    Reply

    I’m using Comfort Clipboard.
    If I am not mistaken, CopyQ lacks of the possibility to save/keep the favorite copied elements, as my email adres for example, (but actually has many other strengths).

    1. BM said on February 20, 2018 at 4:11 am
      Reply

      Sounds like AutoHotKey might be what you are looking for, as you can set up hotkeys or custom hotstrings to insert frequently used text, such as your email address – it could be set to a string of “em.” for instance.

      It is also relatively easy to set up.

  5. RossN said on February 19, 2018 at 8:37 pm
    Reply

    Using Ditto. I love the ability to search for text in the database of clips.

  6. Anonymous said on February 19, 2018 at 8:46 pm
    Reply

    I use CintaNotes already but I will try this one, thanks for the info.

  7. Anonymous said on February 19, 2018 at 8:53 pm
    Reply

    Seems nice at first.. with what program I can open the .qm to correct spelling and grammar mistakes in French?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on February 19, 2018 at 9:33 pm
      Reply
      1. Anonymous said on February 19, 2018 at 11:46 pm
        Reply

        Not simple, It seems I can’t avoid to register on weblate… reading legal terms “.5 Personal Data” I will try it keeping its imperfections. Thanks anyway.

  8. ns said on February 19, 2018 at 9:03 pm
    Reply

    I use Clipjump for years, but will look at this too. Thnk you.

  9. Anonymous said on February 19, 2018 at 9:16 pm
    Reply

    Using Ditto here as well.

  10. Hell Mut said on February 19, 2018 at 9:48 pm
    Reply

    Nobody knows CLCL :(
    It’s great!
    https://www.nakka.com/soft/clcl/index_eng.html

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on February 19, 2018 at 9:58 pm
      Reply
      1. Hell Mut said on February 19, 2018 at 10:09 pm
        Reply

        Ja gut, dass DU das Tool kennst, war anzunehmen :-)

  11. dmacleo said on February 20, 2018 at 12:25 am
    Reply

    forgot to mention I have been happy with Diodan on linux mint
    launchpad.net/diodon

  12. Mark Hazard said on February 20, 2018 at 1:14 am
    Reply

    Thanks for the article, Martin. I have been looking for something like this. I had occasion to use this just the other day. I meant to search for something but got busy with other things.

  13. Jojo said on February 20, 2018 at 8:53 am
    Reply

    IMO, the most powerful and best clipboard program ever was/is Clipmate (http://thornsoft.com/). I have used this for probably 10 years. It is a small dB program as well as a clipboard manager.

    I have nearly 17k clips stored that take up about 110MB!

    But DON’T buy this product because the developer hasn’t released any updates in years, there is no support that I am aware of (developer closed the forums years ago) and he has basically abandoned the product.

    I only wish that some other developer would examine what he did, copy the functionality, maybe improve on it and then offer it for sale.

    I would certainly pay for a supported program with all the functionality that Clipmate offers. I originally paid something like $30 for it years ago.

    1. madeline said on March 11, 2018 at 7:10 am
      Reply

      AGREE COMPLETELY! I’m still running Clipmate and dread the day it is truly made unusable by some update or other. I’ve tried many other clipboard managers and always come back to Clipmate.
      I too would be more than delighted to purchase an updated, maintained version, ot use it with a yearly fee – if only someone were interested :)

      1. Mike99 said on May 8, 2018 at 6:43 am
        Reply

        Yes! ClipMate was (in my opinion) the best clipboard manager ever, but development ended in 2015. AFAIK ClipMate started to get issues with large volumes of clips and the developer was thinking of v8 ‘some time in future’, but probably he left that idea. Regretfully so.

        For me: a clipboard manager should :
        – be able to keep a lot of clips
        – have archiving possibilities
        – exporting features (text clips to .txt files)
        – have many find (+replace) features, incl regex
        – have a user-friendly interface, preferably a bit like Explorer (I don’t like a ‘bare’ interface, like Ditto)

  14. neil said on February 20, 2018 at 8:55 am
    Reply

    started using clipangel and like it lots

  15. Robert G. said on February 20, 2018 at 12:04 pm
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    Now You: Do you use a clipboard manager?

    Yes, I use ArsClip 5.25 Build 6497-11308 available here:

    Full install:

    http://www.softpedia.com/get/Office-tools/Clipboard/ArsClip.shtml

    Portable:

    http://www.softpedia.com/get/PORTABLE-SOFTWARE/System/System-Enhancements/Portable-ArsClip.shtml

  16. chesscanoe said on February 20, 2018 at 2:14 pm
    Reply

    The only recent way I have used multiple clipboards is within IrfanView where you can also clear the clipboaed. CopyQ is going to test my creativity to the extreme once I learn it. Thanks for the tip.

  17. P2d said on February 20, 2018 at 10:16 pm
    Reply

    Ditto to Ditto :D

  18. Roger McKeon said on February 21, 2018 at 7:15 pm
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    I used CipMate for many years but it isn’t maintained anymore and doesn’t get along well with my Windows 10 & high definition display. I looked around for a while and finally discovered Spartan MultiClipboard, which is almost too powerful and should be much better known (20 euros).

    http://m8software.com/clipboards/spartan/clipboard-manager.htm

    1. user said on February 21, 2018 at 10:17 pm
      Reply

      unfortunate about ClipMate. the one killer feature from ClipMate for me is the ClipMate ClipBar(anyone know of a clipboard manager with a similar feature ?) having your clipboard available on the taskbar is really convenient and this one feature is what is keeping me with ClipMate. your suggestion looks promising, Spartan looks to be very very powerful! thank you for the suggestion.

    2. Jojo said on February 22, 2018 at 9:54 am
      Reply

      I will take a look at Spartan.

      Does it capture the URL with the clip as CM does? This is really useful to me as I save a lot of clips and I can always get back to the original clip because CM has the URL.

  19. John Fenderson said on February 22, 2018 at 1:32 am
    Reply

    I just use the clipboard manager that comes with KDE. It’s basic, but does what I need. Every time I have to use Windows, it’s one of the things I miss terribly. I should give this a try on that platform!

  20. heyricardo said on March 7, 2018 at 12:13 pm
    Reply

    clipdiary here

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