Understanding the 'Clipboard' menu under Hyper-V

  • Comments 25

With Hyper-V the Virtual Machine Connection window has a menu titled 'clipboard'.  This menu brings two of my favorite features from Virtual PC to the server world.  Unfortunately these features caused some confusion under Virtual PC - so we have tried to make this better for Hyper-V.  Under this menu there are two entries:

  • Type clipboard text.

    On Virtual PC this used to just be 'paste' but that is not the right description for what actually happens.  When you select this option the Virtual Machine Connection will take any text that is currently in the physical computers clipboard and pretend to type it on the keyboard of the virtual machine. 

    The downside to this approach is that we can only paste text (no graphics, etc...).  The upside to this approach is that it allows you to paste text at any time - no matter what the guest operating system is - or what it is doing.  One place where I often use this is to enter serial numbers for Windows when I am installing it. 

    One final word of warning - text is literally 'typed on the keyboard' - so if you try to copy and paste a large amount of text you might have to wait for a while for it to catch up.

  • Capture screen.

    On Virtual PC this used to be 'copy'.  Selecting this option will take a screen shot of the guest operating system and place it in the physical computer's clipboard.  This is very handy for catching screen shots of things like operating system installation - where a screen shot utility is usually not available.

As a side note - if you want to get a screen shot of a running virtual machine (including the Virtual Machine Connection window) just press your release key combination (CTRL + ALT + LEFT ARROW by default) and then press ALT + PRTSCN.  Click back in the Virtual Machine Connection window to keep on using the guest operating system afterwards.


Leave a Comment
  • Please add 6 and 4 and type the answer here:
  • Post
  • How does typing handle non-ASCII chars?

  • I have trouble with the Type Clipboard function

    For example when i copy on physical machine the url of this article:


    when i use the Type Clipboard function this string is typed on the VM


    Is there any better solution to paste (and copy) text to (from) a VM ?

  • To capture screen in clipboard of the virtual machine : go to full screen mode (Ctrl Alt Break) than fn+print screen.

  • Hello there, I am trying to alt-Printscreen on my virtual fedora OS and need to paste it on my physical windows word document. Everything I have been trying is only letting me put it to the clipboard on openoffice and not to my windows word doc. What am I doing wrong! Please help! Thankyou

  • This is a very good example of decaying Usability standards at Microsoft: they took something that used to work under Virtual PC and butchered it beyond recognition under Hyper-V. Or maybe it is just a technical impossibility to do what VPC does under Hyper-V, such as drag-and-drop between host and guest. If so, just admit it won't work instead of mocking it up with a stupid "Clipboard" menu that only confuses things. Also, are you being facetious when you said "Unfortunately these features caused some confusion under Virtual PC - so we have tried to make this better for Hyper-V."? It is exactly the other way around: it worked perfectly under VPC and now it does not under Hyper-V.

  • So how can I copy text *from* a virtual machine *to* the host?

  • There is a limit on number of characters one can paste on clipboard. One cannot type large amounts of text, if needed. There have been few cases where we have to type registry data and we have to do it 4-5 lines at one time. Pls avoid this in next release.

  • So to repeat Javier's question: So how can I copy text *from* a virtual machine *to* the host?  Ben, can you help here?

  • And to repeat Javier's question again - how do you get clipboard text from the guest to the host O.S.  If you're telling me that Hyper-V can't do this - wow that is freakin' lame.  Guess I'll mosey on back to VMware - nothing to see here.

  • How can i copy from the Guest OS to the Host OS?

  • +1 to Javier's question - I can't copy text out of the guest to the host :-(

    I'm now having to paste text in the guest into a file on a shared folder - painful!

  • Hyper V sucks big time.. this is just crap!!!

    Have been using it for some time now.. it lacks basic thingss compared to VirtualBox and VMWare

    The only good thing about it is that you can have alot of virtual networks.. which is pretty less in others.

    This is just CRAP.. I'm basically stuck with this crap..

  • Hyper-V is a poor substitute for Virtual PC users. It's clearly a server solution and crap for local PC work - development for example - that we are forced to use now in Windows 8.

    No easy copy and paste to a guest. No copy and paste at all from guest to host. Doesn't run in 32-bit windows. No drag and drop.

    Why didn't Microsoft just let VPC work in Win8?

    Poor show MS

  • Basic Copy and Paste Features between client + host which should work, aren't working in Windows 8.

  • Hyper-V client is only for very basic virtual machine maintenance (troubleshooting network problems, quick shutdown etc.). Once the VM is set-up correctly, you are supposed to access it through your network via RDP tool (Remote Desktop) which has full clipboard capabilities, drag&drop of files etc...  

Page 1 of 2 (25 items) 12

Understanding the 'Clipboard' menu under Hyper-V