SELECT,  COPY  AND  PASTE

If you have not read this page before continue reading it, from top to bottom, as normal. Otherwise you can click on a subject below to get near/on the subject you was reading before.

Multiple Selection        Copy & Paste        Cut & Paste        Drag & Drop        Paste-Over A Folder        More Paste        Folder Order

In previous Folders And Files sections you have been taught how to Select, Copy, Cut and Past a folder, amongst other things. Now I am going to show you how to put the whole thing together, using Files as well, so that you know what is meant by the terms Copy & Paste and Cut & Paste.

To make the learning even easier I am going to be using two windows. The first window will be the DOCUMENTS folder. This is where I am going to Copy from and Cut from. And the second window will be my Flash Drive (Memory Pen/Stick), which is empty. This is where I am going to put (Paste) the copied (and cut) sub-folders and files. So basically I am going to show you how to copy folders and files from one storage area to another by using Copy & Paste and Cut & Paste procedures.


Before I continue I must point out that the Folder View, and more specifically the Toolbars, of each folder used in this section have been premodified for ease of viewing. Meaning. Instead of seeing the Name, Date Modified, Type, Size and so on toolbars (below) I have changed each folder's view to only show the Name toolbar. I thought the other toolbars might distract from the explanations. The changes, which are not documented (hence why I am informing you here), are made after I open a folder or after I paste something into a folder. If you want to change a folder's view see the next section which is called Folder Views.



A typical folder's Folder View

To get started the first thing you need to do is open your Source window (folder), which you use as the COPY From window or CUT From window. You then need to open your Destination window (folder), which you use as the PASTE Into window. See the How To Move A Window and How To Re-Size A Window sections for more information, if need be.



Fig 1.0  The Source folder (window) - DOCUMENTS




Fig 1.1  The Destination folder (window) - Flash Drive (F:)

In this example the DOCUMENTS folder is being used as the Source window (folder) and the Flash Drive (F:) folder is being used as the Destination window (folder). The DOCUMENTS folder has two sub-folders inside it, called Important Files and OneNote Notebooks, and nine assorted files inside it called Essay (Microsoft Word 2007 file), Paris1, Paris2 (Picture files), Music1, Music2 (Music files), Research Notes (Text file), Rome1, Rome2 (Picture files) and Weekly Shopping (Microsoft Excel 2007 file). The Flash Drive (F:) folder is empty.

The Flash Drive has been assigned (given) the letter F in this example but could easily of been assigned another letter, by Windows 7, depending on what other hardware devices I have plugged into my computer. And FLASH DRIVE is the name I gave the flash-memory (hardware) drive. Although I could easily of called it John or Homework for example if I wanted to.

FLASH DRIVE (which is empty at the moment) is known as the Destination, because it is here where I will end up putting (Pasting) the example sub-folders and/or files. The source and destination folders can be any folders/sub-folders of your choosing (i.e. Floppy Disk to a Website, DOCUMENTS to a Flash-Memory Drive, DOCUMENTS to a CD and so on). Here I have chosen DOCUMENTS because it is on your computer and the Flash-Memory Drive (FLASH DRIVE) because it is portable (it can be removed from your computer and then inserted into another computer), therefore any folders and/or files pasted (put) into it will be portable as well.

After opening the two windows the next thing to do is to decide which folders and/or files I want to COPY (or CUT). And then where I want to put (PASTE) them. For example. If I COPY the Essay file do I then PASTE it straight into the Flash Drive folder or do I want to create a sub-folder for Essay to go into first? It is this kind of thing you must decide before doing any copying/pasting or cutting/pasting. In other words. Map out where you would like each sub-folder and/or file to be pasted (put), create any needed sub-folders inside your destination folder, and then COPY & PASTE your sub-folder(s) and/or file(s).

The first thing I am going to do is create a sub-folder called Holiday Photos inside the FLASH DRIVE folder. This can be done by clicking on the NEW FOLDER button. If you are using a Folder View with the standard menu on it you can create a folder in the normal way. See the How To Create A Folder and How To Rename A Folder sections if you need help.



Fig 1.2  Create a sub-folder inside the Flash Drive main folder....




Fig 1.3  ....and then rename it from New Folder to Holiday Photos.

The next thing I am going to do is double click on the Holiday Photos sub-folder (Fig 1.4 below) to get inside it (Fig 1.5). From there I will create two sub-sub-folders, France and Italy, in the normal way. So the hierarchy is then FLASH DRIVE (the main folder), Holiday Photos (a sub-folder inside FLASH DRIVE and also a main folder for France and Italy) and France and Italy (sub-folders inside Holiday Photos and also sub-sub-folders to FLASH DRIVE).



Fig 1.4  Double click on the Holiday Photos folder to get inside it....




Fig 1.5  ....and then create the France and Italy sub-sub-folders.

Now that the two sub-sub-folders, France and Italy, have been created inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder I will double click on the France sub-sub-folder to get inside it. The reason being that I want to copy the Paris1 and Paris2 photograph files from the DOCUMENTS folder into the France sub-sub-folder.



Fig 1.6  Double click on the France sub-sub-folder....




Fig 1.7  ....to get inside it.

Before I do any copying I need to explain how you select more than one file (or sub-folder). The How To Copy A Folder and How To Cut A Folder sections explained how to select one sub-folder at a time, but in this section you will need to know how to select more than one sub-folder and/or file at a time.


MULTIPLE  SELECTION

There are two basic methods for selecting multiple items (folders and/or files). The first method is to use the CTRL keyboard key, which allows you to select individual items. And the second method is to use the SHIFT keyboard key, which allows you to select a range of items.

Select with CTRL

With the CTRL keyboard key method you start by selecting your first item (folder or sub-folder) as normal, by clicking on it with the left mouse button (Fig 1.8). You then press the CTRL keyboard key and keep it held down as you select your second item, your third item and so on (Fig 1.9). When you are happy with your selection you let go of the CTRL keyboard key. If you make a mistake you can always deselect an item by clicking on it again, with the CTRL keyboard key held down.

If you do not keep the CTRL keyboard key held down as you are selecting or deselecting an item you will cancel your selection and have to start all over again.



Fig 1.8  Select your first item (folder or file)




Fig 1.9  Select other items (folders and/or files) with the CTRL keyboard key held down


Select with SHIFT

With the SHIFT keyboard key method you start by selecting your first item (folder and/or file) as normal, by clicking on it with the left mouse button (Fig 1.10). You then press the SHIFT keyboard key and keep it held down as you select the last item in your range (Fig 1.11). When you are happy with your selected range you let go of the SHIFT keyboard key. If you make a mistake with the last item you can always select a different last item by clicking on it, with the SHIFT keyboard key held down.

If you do not keep the SHIFT keyboard key held down as you are selecting a last item only the last item will be selected. The first item will be deselected, therefore no range will be created.



Fig 1.10  Select your first item (folder or file)




Fig 1.11  Select your last item (folder or file) with SHIFT held down

The SHIFT and CTRL methods can also be used in combination. For example. You could select a range of files (and/or folders) with the SHIFT method and then select individual files (and/or folders) with the CTRL method (Fig 1.12). You cannot do the reverse though. You cannot select individual items with the CTRL method and then select a range of items with the SHIFT method because the SHIFT method will deselect any items selected with the CTRL method. Therefore, either use the SHIFT method first and then the CTRL method (as in Fig 1.12) or use the CTRL method first and then use the mouse pointer to select a range of items (Fig 1.13).



Fig 1.12  SHIFT - Research Notes to Weekly Shopping and then CTRL - OneNote Notebooks




Fig 1.13  CTRL - Important Files and Essay and then Mouse Select (elastic band) Paris2 to Rome2

In Fig 1.13 I first selected the Important Files sub-folder and then the Essay file using the CTRL method. With the CTRL keyboard key still held down I then used the Mouse Pointer to select the range of files Paris2 to Rome2 - The mouse pointer Drag method was shown in the How To Paste A Folder section (towards the end, after Fig 1.15), but I will refresh your memory anyway!

Starting from the top right-hand-side of your selection, click the left mouse button. Keep it clicked (held down) and then drag (move) the mouse pointer towards the bottom left-hand-side of your selection. Then let go of the left mouse button. So in Fig 1.13 I started by moving the mouse pointer to the top right-hand-side of the Paris2 file. I then clicked the left mouse button and kept it clicked whilst I then dragged (moved) the mouse pointer towards the bottom left-hand-side of the Rome2 file. When I knew that was what I wanted selecting I let go of the left mouse button. You do not have to be perfect with your positioning of the mouse pointer, as Fig 1.13 shows, because Windows 7 automatically selects the folders and/or files that are within range of your selection box (elastic band) for you.

Now that you know how to select items the next thing to do is the actual copying (or cutting) and pasting.


COPY  &  PASTE

The word COPY, when used in the context of COPY & PASTE, means to make an exact copy of the currently selected item(s) and put that exact copy of the currently selected item(s) into Memory. So that when the currently selected item(s) need pasting (moving to another place) it is the exact copy of the currently selected item(s), now in memory, that are pasted (moved to another place) and not the currently selected item(s). In other words. The currently selected item(s) stay where they are and are kept selected. It is the exact copy of the currently selected item(s), in memory, that is pasted.



Fig 1.14  COPY the selected items (the Paris1 and Paris2 files) into Memory




Fig 1.15  PASTE the memory items (the memory copy of the Paris1 and Paris2 files) into the France sub-folder

So the COPY & PASTE process is as follows. First select the item(s) you want a COPY of. Then click on the ORGANIZE menu and select (left click on) the COPY menu-item (Fig 1.14 above) - This will create an exact copy of your selected item(s) and put that exact copy into memory, therefore creating a memory copy of your selected item(s). You then go to the place (sub-folder) where you want the exact copy (memory copy) of your selected item(s) pasted to, click on the ORGANIZE menu and then select the PASTE menu-item (Fig 1.15 above) - This will put the exact copy (memory copy) of your selected item(s) into the place (sub-folder) you have chosen. So in my example I selected the Paris1 and Paris2 files from the DOCUMENTS folder, clicked on ORGANISE > COPY, went over to the France sub-folder and then clicked on ORGANISE > PASTE.

Note: For this example I resized the navigation pane so that I could show you the two selected files (Paris1 and Paris2) as well as the COPY menu-item. You may find yourself, on the odd occasion, doing something similar with a folder's window pane(s).....which is quite normal!



Fig 1.16  The memory items (the memory copy of the Paris1 and Paris2 files) have been PASTEd into the France sub-folder




Fig 1.17  The original files, inside the DOCUMENTS folder, are intact.

As you can see; When the exact copy (memory copy) of your selected items (Paris1 and Paris2 files) are pasted, from memory, into the France sub-folder (Fig 1.16 above) the selected items inside the DOCUMENTS folder remain intact (Fig 1.17 above). They are not deleted. This is because PASTE is working with a memory copy of your selected item(s), that COPY created, and not with your actual currently selected item(s).


CUT  &  PASTE

The word CUT, when used in the context of CUT & PASTE, means to cut out (delete) the currently selected item(s) once they have been pasted. In other words. CUT & PASTE works in exactly the same way as COPY & PASTE with the difference being that CUT deletes the currently (originally) selected item(s) once they have been pasted from memory. So CUT really does move items from one place to another, whereas COPY leaves the original items alone.



Fig 1.18  COPY the selected items into Memory




Fig 1.19  The selected items are marked for deletion

So the CUT & PASTE process is as follows. First select the item(s) you want a COPY of. Then click on the ORGANIZE menu and select (left click on) the CUT menu-item (Fig 1.18 above) - This will create an exact copy of your selected item(s) and put that exact copy into memory, therefore creating a memory copy of your selected item(s). Your currently selected item(s) are then marked for deletion, denoted by their icons being faded out (Fig 1.19 above), which means they will be deleted once a PASTE has occurred. You then go to the place (sub-folder) where you want the exact copy (memory copy) of your selected item(s) pasted to, click on the ORGANIZE menu and then select the PASTE menu-item (Fig 1.20 below) - This will put the exact copy (memory copy) of your selected item(s) into the place (sub-folder) you have chosen (Fig 1.21 below).

So in my example I selected the Paris1 and Paris2 files from the DOCUMENTS folder, clicked on ORGANISE > CUT, went over to the France sub-folder and then clicked on ORGANISE > PASTE. Once the PASTE has been done your selected item(s) inside the DOCUMENTS folder are then deleted (Fig 1.22 below).



Fig 1.20  PASTE the memory items (the memory copy of the Paris1 and Paris2 files) into the France sub-folder




Fig 1.21  The memory items (the memory copy of the Paris1 and Paris2 files) have been PASTEd into the France sub-folder




Fig 1.22  The original copy has been deleted (CUT out) from the DOCUMENTS folder


DRAG  &  DROP

DRAG & DROP is a variant of COPY & PASTE. It allows you to DRAG (move) one, or more, items (sub-folders and/or files) from one place to another using just the mouse pointer and left mouse button. Below is an example using the Paris1 file.

Start by selecting a file, but do not release the left mouse button - keep it held down over the selected file. Now move the mouse pointer towards the main folder (or sub-folder) you want your selected file to go into (Fig 1.23 below). Remember. The left mouse button is still held down as you are moving the mouse pointer - This is known as Dragging. As you drag the mouse pointer your selected file follows the mouse pointer.



Fig 1.23  DRAG (move) your selected file towards its destination folder (main folder or sub-folder)

As soon as the mouse pointer is away from the source folder (i.e. away from the DOCUMENTS folder) and over the desktop a message appears underneath the mouse pointer - Move To Desktop (Fig 1.24 below). This means if you now let go of the left mouse button a copy of your selected file will be placed on the desktop. Your original selected file will still be intact inside its source folder as DRAG & DROP works with a memory copy, just the same as COPY & PASTE. In this example though you are not DROPping your selected file onto the desktop, so keep the left mouse button pressed.



Fig 1.24  A copy of the selected file could be placed onto the desktop now, if the left mouse button is released.

With the left mouse button still pressed carry on moving (dragging) the mouse pointer towards your destination folder (i.e. towards the France sub-folder). When the mouse pointer is just coming over your destination folder (main folder or sub-folder) a message will appear - Copy To Destination folder (i.e. Copy To France). It is now that you could let go of the left mouse button in order to place a copy of your selected file inside the destination folder (Fig 1.25 below). However, being a beginner, you are better off waiting until you have dragged the mouse pointer into the center (white display area) of your destination folder before letting go of the left mouse button.



Fig 1.25  The selected file is now over its destination sub-folder, so release the left mouse button....




Fig 1.26  ....so that the selected file is dropped inside the destination sub-folder.

A good use for dropping a file when it has just approached a destination folder's title bar (a destination window's title bar) is when you have multiple folders (windows) stacked on top of one another (Fig 1.27 below), whereby you cannot see the display area of the destination folder (destination window). After dropping the selected file the destination folder is brought to the front of the other folders (Fig 1.28 below) - This may hide one or more of the other folder's title bar, depending on how much of that folder is viewable.



Fig 1.27  How to drop the selected file onto a destination folder with no display area visible




Fig 1.28  The selected file is dropped and the destination sub-folder is brought to the front

To drag more than one item simply select more than one item and then follow the Drag & Drop steps above - You are doing exactly the same as above except you are starting with more than one item selected, so you will be dragging and then dropping more than one item (as shown below). So to clarify. Select your items as normal, making sure the mouse button has been released after the last selection, and then start dragging the now highlighted items to their destination folder.



Fig 1.29  Select more than one file and then start dragging them over to the destination folder




Fig 1.30  Drop the selected files over the destination folder's title bar or over the destination folder's display area


PASTE-OVER  A  FOLDER

Over the Folders & Files sections I have shown you how to paste your item(s) inside a sub-folder, so that (1) you know your item(s) were definitely pasted inside that sub-folder and (2) you could see what else was inside that sub-folder, but what if you do not care about what is already inside a sub-folder and you trust Windows 7 to paste your item(s) into a sub-folder? Is there a way of pasting into a sub-folder without actually opening that sub-folder?....Yes there is. This next example shows how to paste already selected and copied items into the France sub-folder (from the above examples) without actually opening the France sub-folder.


Once the Paris1 and Paris2 files have been selected and then copied (ORGANIZE > COPY) into memory, the next thing to do is make sure you are inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder. Either open the Holiday Photos sub-folder from scratch or with the above examples just click on the blue BACK (left-arrow) button to get back into the Holiday Photos sub-folder. When you are inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder, where you can see the France and Italy sub-folders, right click on the France sub-folder to bring up its Options menu. From there, left click on the PASTE menu-item. This will then paste the Paris1 and Paris2 files into the France sub-folder, without you having to open the France sub-folder.



Fig 1.31  Right click over a destination folder (or sub-folder) to PASTE one, or more, items into it.

If you want to paste directly into the main folder of a hardware device, such as a Floppy Disk (A:) or a Flash Drive (F:), you can use the SEND TO menu-item. Simply select your item(s), without COPYing them with ORGANIZE > COPY, and then right-click on one of the selected items. This will bring up the Options menu where you must then navigate towards the SEND TO sub-menu - There is no need to click on this sub-menu though as it will open its own menu after a second or so. When the SEND TO sub-menu opens left click on its Hardware Device menu-item (i.e. Flash Drive (F:)). A copy of your selected items will then be sent to that hardware device's main folder - In my example, to the F: main folder (Fig 1.32 below).



Fig 1.32  Right click over one selected file and SEND the selected file(s) TO the Hardware Device

In the two examples above the original files were left in their original folders after their pasting operation - none of them did a CUT. Each example did a COPY only, which if you remember means a copy of their files are put into memory - Example one pasted its memory files into the France sub-folder, whereas example two (SEND TO) pasted its memory files into the F: main folder. In both examples I did not have to open the destination folder (i.e. the France sub-folder and the F: main folder).


MORE  PASTE

What I have explained so far is one COPY and one PASTE. In other words. The copying of a selection of files from one place to another, which is okay if that is all you need but what happens if you need to paste the same copied items into more than one place? Do the same files need a COPY & PASTE to the France sub-folder for example and then another COPY & PASTE to the F: main folder for example? Answer.....No. When you use ORGANIZE > COPY a copy of your selected files are put into memory, ready for the PASTE operation, as explained throughout this section. And when you ORGANIZE > PASTE those memory files are then taken out of memory and pasted (moved) into your destination folder. To have more than one PASTE with the same files you simply go inside your second destination folder and do ORGANIZE > PASTE again. So for every destination folder you do an ORGANIZE > PASTE. What PASTE actually does is go back the second time, and thereafter, and copies your originally selected files into memory again (by re-calling COPY).....and then moves (pastes) them from memory into your destination folder.

Note. If you remove the source folder (i.e. your Flash Drive), even after doing an ORGANIZE > COPY of your selected Flash Drive files, you will get an error.....because the memory was cleared. For example. If you select all the files on your Flash Drive, do ORGANIZE > COPY, and then unplug your Flash Drive you will not be able to ORGANIZE > PASTE to the DOCUMENTS folder for example. This is because COPY quickly makes a copy of your selected files and stores them briefly in memory, as it knows a PASTE will follow shortly. After all, you are transferring data. So no permanent storage should be required. It is the way COPY & PASTE operates. For example. Imagine you did many ORGANIZE > COPYs without doing any ORGANIZE > PASTEs. Your memory would be filling up with data and probably be denying a program the memory it desperately needs. Hence why a second PASTE goes back and informs COPY to copy your selected files into memory again. COPY & PASTE work as a team to quickly transfer files from A to B using quick memory copying procedures.



Fig 1.33  Do NOT unplug a Hardware Storage Device during COPY & PASTE


FOLDER  HIERARCHY (ORDER)

The hierarchy (order) of folders, like COPY & PASTE, has also been explained over the Folders & Files sections. However. Most of the examples in those explanations have shown how to go down the hierarchy, to get inside a sub-folder. So in this next example I will show you how to go up and down the Flash Drive's hierarchy so that you are clear what the hierarchy is.



Fig 1.34  The hierarchy of Flash Drive (F:)

With any hierarchy start from the top, and also look at the folders like a family tree as in Fig 1.34 above. For example. The hierarchy, if you had folders to do with your family, could be Mother, Daughter (left branch), Son (right branch), Granddaughter (daughter's branch) and so on. In other words, when you go into a sub-folder you are going down the hierarchy (i.e Mother into Daughter or Flash Drive F: into Holiday Photos). And when you come out of a sub-folder you are going up the hierarchy (i.e out of Daughter an into Mother again or out of Holiday Photos and into Flash Drive F: again). Here an example.



Fig 1.35  You are currently inside the Flash Drive (F:) main folder - Double click on Holiday Photos to get inside it.




Fig 1.36  You are currently inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder - Double click on France to get inside it.




Fig 1.37  You are now inside the France sub-sub-folder, with two files inside it (Paris1 and Paris2).

Figures 1.35 to 1.37 were straight forward. I just went straight down the hierarchy to one of the last sub-folders - France. I could of gone for the other last sub-folder, on the other branch, which would of been Italy of course. Remember. From Holiday Photos the hierarchy branches into France and Italy.

To go back up one level of the folder order (hierarchy) simply click on the previous folder's name which should be located inside the current folder's Address Bar edit box (Fig 1.38 below). In Fig 1.38 I want to get out of the France sub-folder and back into the Holiday Photos sub-folder. Once this is done (Fig 1.39) I can then see both the France and Italy sub-folders again because I am now back inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder.



Fig 1.38  Click on the previous folder's name (Holiday Photos) to get back inside that folder




Fig 1.39  Back inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder

Clicking on the previous folder's name again (Fig 1.39 above), Flash Drive (F:) this time, from inside the Holiday Photos sub-folder takes me back into the Flash Drive (F:) main folder. For more explanation of the Address Bar edit box, and more importantly examples and explanations of Path Names, see the path names section (Fig 1.3 onwards).

Remember. At anytime you are in a main folder (or sub-folder) you can create a sub-folder inside that main folder (or sub-folder), delete a sub-folder, COPY & PASTE or CUT & PASTE (if there are items inside the folder) and so on.