How to Clear Your Clipboard History in Windows 10

The clipboard in Windows 10 allows you to easily copy and paste text, images, and other content between documents and applications. By default, Windows 10 saves your clipboard history, meaning it stores multiple clipboard items that you’ve recently copied. Here’s how to clear your clipboard history in Windows 10.

Why Clear Your Clipboard History

There are a few reasons why you may want to clear your clipboard history in Windows 10:

  • Privacy – Your clipboard could contain sensitive information like passwords, addresses, credit card numbers etc. Clearing it prevents others from accessing this information.
  • Security – Malware could potentially access clipboard data to steal sensitive information. Clearing the history reduces this risk.
  • Reduce Clutter – The clipboard history can get filled up with lots of unwanted copied items. Clearing it declutters the list.
  • Free Up Memory – Your clipboard history takes up some memory and storage space. Deleting items frees up this space.

How Clipboard History Works in Windows 10

Here’s a quick overview of how the clipboard history feature works in Windows 10:

  • It stores the last 25 items you’ve copied, including text, images, HTML, etc.
  • Items over 1 MB in size are not saved in the history.
  • Pinned items are not deleted when you clear the clipboard history.
  • The history is tied to your Windows login and roamed across your Windows devices.
  • History is deleted when you sign out or restart your PC, except pinned items.

Steps to Clear Clipboard History

Here are the steps to completely clear your clipboard history in Windows 10:

1. Open Clipboard History

  • Press Windows logo key + V on your keyboard. This opens the clipboard history viewer.

OR

  • Open Settings > System > Clipboard and turn on Clipboard history if it’s disabled.

2. Unpin Pinned Items

  • Locate any items marked with a pin icon in your clipboard history. These are pinned items.
  • Right-click each pinned item and select Unpin from clipboard.

3. Clear All Items

  • Click the three-dot menu icon at the top right of the clipboard viewer.
  • Select Clear all to delete all items.

Your clipboard history is now completely cleared, including any pinned items!

Alternative Ways to Clear Clipboard

Here are a couple alternative methods to quickly clear your clipboard data:

  • Use a Shortcut – Create a shortcut with the command cmd /c echo.|clip. Double click this whenever you want to clear clipboard.
  • Command Prompt – Open Command Prompt as admin and run cmd /c "echo off | clip"
  • Settings – Go to Settings > System > Clipboard and click the Clear button under “Clear clipboard data”.
  • Registry Editor – Delete the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Clipboard to reset clipboard data.

Stop Clipboard History from Saving

If you don’t need your clipboard history at all, you can fully disable the feature in Windows:

  • Open Settings > System > Clipboard.
  • Turn off the toggle for Clipboard history.

Now Windows will stop saving multiple clipboard items when you copy content.

Clipboard Managers

If you do a lot of copying and pasting, a third-party clipboard manager app is worth checking out. These apps greatly improve upon Windows’ basic clipboard functionality.

Popular clipboard managers include:

  • Ditto – Free and open source clipboard manager with cross-device sync.
  • CopyQ – Open source app with editing, command, and scripting support.
  • 1Clipboard – Cross platform clipboard manager for Windows, Mac and Linux.
  • ClipClip – Lightweight clipboard manager with cloud sync and text translation.

Security Tips for Clipboard Use

Here are some tips to keep your clipboard usage secure:

  • Clear history frequently – Make it a habit to regularly clear your clipboard history.
  • Disable history when not needed – If you don’t use the multiple clipboard feature often, keep the history turned off.
  • Avoid copying sensitive data – Don’t copy passwords, financial information and other private data.
  • Use a clipboard manager – Install a secure, open source clipboard manager app instead.
  • Practice caution when pasting – Always verify content before pasting, especially into inputs fields.

Conclusion

Clearing your clipboard history in Windows 10 is easy – just open the clipboard viewer, unpin any pinned items and select “Clear All”. Disabling clipboard history entirely prevents Windows from storing your copy history.

Be mindful of what you copy and frequently clear your clipboard to avoid privacy and security issues. Consider a third party clipboard manager if you do a lot of copying and pasting.

I hope this comprehensive guide on clearing your clipboard history has helped explain exactly how the Windows clipboard functions and how you can clear it or disable it. Let me know if you have any other questions!