Windows 10 has a clipboard history which can be accessed using WIN+V it has a recent history of all your copy and paste. When using this in VIM and trying to paste from it doesn't work it acts like nothing happens. Wondering if there's a way to make it usable in VIM. The alternative is opening up a notepad and just windows copying from there which is just extra steps.

  • 1
    Welcome to Vi and Vim!
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Commented Jan 23, 2021 at 16:21
  • On my laptop, WIN+V works as expected, pasting into Vim 8.0 (in Insert Mode) in Windows Terminal - Ubuntu and Windows Terminal - OpenSUSE. (In Normal Mode, it ignores what I paste until it hits one of A, a, I, i, O, o, R, S, s; then pastes the remainder.) When I try to do it in WSL - Ubuntu and WSL - OpenSUSE (in Insert Mode or in Normal Mode), Vim enters Visual Block Mode. In GVim 8.2, in Insert Mode ⊞v prints a caret ^, and in Normal Mode it enters Visual Block Mode, allowing me to select a rectangular block of text. Curious.
    – m_mlvx
    Commented Jan 25, 2021 at 1:18
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    Win-V (aka ⊞v) should have no effect except to open the clipboard history window. Windows intercepts Win-V before it reaches a window. It's when you click on a row in the history window that some keystroke is sent to the window from which you entered Win-V. And that keystroke is as I describe in my answer: Ctrl-V or similar. That one can have the kind of effects you describe. Are you sure you have this feature enabled?
    – B Layer
    Commented Jan 26, 2021 at 11:02
  • I did not have ⊞v enabled at first -- I seem to remember disabling "clipboard history" a few years ago, because, if my memory is correct, ctrl-v (back then) invoked the clipboard history, and I hated getting lots of irrelevant options (instead of what was most recently in the clipboard). But, I had to turn it on to try it and get the results I described above. Win10 helpfully pops up a message about enabling it, if you press ⊞v with clipboard history disabled. Now that it's on, I'll probably keep it enabled.
    – m_mlvx
    Commented Jan 26, 2021 at 16:47
  • @GideonSassoon Did my answer address your question?
    – B Layer
    Commented Feb 27, 2021 at 11:08

1 Answer 1


It looks like selecting something from that window leads to Windows doing Ctrl+V in an attempt to paste. That, of course, doesn't mean the same thing in Vim. However, if you have things properly set up to catch clipboard text in register * (see :h 'clipboard') then all you'd need to do after clicking an item in the window is hit p in Vim. (If that doesn't work see if "*p does.)

I just tried it and p does work for me.

(There are ways to make Ctrl-V do a put in Vim but that's a bit more obtrusive.)

Update: I was playing around a bit with this and it appears to be a little smarter than just Ctrl-V pasting everywhere. For instance, in my mintty terminal that I use for Cygwin it successfully pastes but it can't be using Ctrl-V as that does nothing. I do have both Shift+Ins and Ctrl+Shift+V set up to act like Ctrl-V, though, and it seems that it detected one of these.

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