I have NVIM v0.4.3 installed on Debian 10. When I run:

:echo has('clipboard')

I get 0, which means that this extension is not available. I cannot copy to OS clipboard using "+y and "*y commands.

How could I install or make this extension available?

Update :help clipboard shows:

Clipboard integration

provider-clipboard clipboard

Nvim has no direct connection to the system clipboard. Instead it depends on a provider which transparently uses shell commands to communicate with the system clipboard or any other clipboard "backend".

To ALWAYS use the clipboard for ALL operations (instead of interacting with the '+' and/or '*' registers explicitly):

set clipboard+=unnamedplus

See 'clipboard' for details and options.


The presence of a working clipboard tool implicitly enables the '+' and '*' registers. Nvim looks for these clipboard tools, in order of priority:

Which of these providers could work in Debian Docker container? It seems that only tmux is suitable, however I have to start tmux session to use it. I have tried xclip, but probably $DISPLAY is not set in the container and it does not work.

  • 1
    :help clipboard
    – Matt
    Feb 20, 2021 at 14:55
  • I have read the clipboard help, but still don't understand how to make clipboard work. My environment is in Docker container, I have installed xclip, but still no effect, cannot use +, * registers.
    – niekas
    Feb 20, 2021 at 15:42

1 Answer 1


Linux does not provide any system clipboard. Therefore you can't make use of it.

See, for example, Access Unix Clipboard for explanation.

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