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Important This document may not represent best practices for current development, links to downloads and other resources may no longer be valid. Current recommended version can be found here.


This family of articles explains how to implement support for the Windows Clipboard in MFC applications. The Windows Clipboard is used in two ways:

  • Implementing standard Edit menu commands, such as Cut, Copy, and Paste.

  • Implementing uniform data transfer with drag and drop (OLE).

The Clipboard is the standard Windows method of transferring data between a source and a destination. It can also be very useful in OLE operations. With the advent of OLE, there are two Clipboard mechanisms in Windows. The standard Windows Clipboard API is still available, but it has been supplemented with the OLE data transfer mechanism. OLE uniform data transfer (UDT) supports Cut, Copy, and Paste with the Clipboard and drag and drop.

The Clipboard is a system service shared by the entire Windows session, so it does not have a handle or class of its own. You manage the Clipboard through member functions of class CWnd.

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