PureText: the paste-as-text shortcut

Last year, I was looking for a tool that could shortcut the "paste as values" command. My requirement fell outside of Excel – I wanted it to paste into WordPress, MS Word, into Google Mail messages etc. I never even thought of using such a tool in Excel.

After a brief search, I found PureText. It is without doubt the neatest piece of software I've installed in the last few years. And it's free.

It's simple. It launches in the background when you start your machine. And the only thing it does is create a shortcut that pastes whatever's sitting on your clipboard as plain text.

So to copy something, you hit CTRL+C in the usual way. But to paste as plain text, instead of hitting CTRL+V, you hit Window+V. (The Window key is present on most non-Mac keyboards, somewhere to the left of the space bar.)

As well as working in the above-mentioned packages, it's also sublime when it comes to Excel. It bypasses the two mouse clicks that you'd usually need to paste values.

If you're a fan of the keyboard shortcut, then this app's just for you.

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7 Responses to PureText: the paste-as-text shortcut

  1. Simon says:

    Is this the first actual use anyone has ever made of the Windows key?

  2. Dan says:


    Window E: Windows Explorer.
    Window M: Minimise everything.
    Window D: Go to Desktop (subtly different to M, in that repeating Window D reverts everything to previous state).
    Window R: Run.

  3. Simon says:

    Blimey. Who knew? I just thought it was the bloody annoying button that popped up the 'Start' menu when I was aiming for 'Alt' or 'CTRL'…


  4. Dan says:

    For grammatical queries, please go to http://www.osirra.com

  5. Steph Gray says:

    For those of us lucky enough to have slipped the yoke of Windows and happily chewing the Mac cud, a few Mac apps offer a 'paste as plain text' command as a built-in command. If in doubt, try Command*+Shift+V or Command+Alt+V or maybe even Command+Alt+Shift+V.

    *Command is the key with the squiggle/Apple on it

  6. Like all of you I have dealt with the slowdown (far too often in a day's work) of hoop jumping with just pasting plain text. And like Steph above I've also slipped the yoke of Windows and while the keyboard shortcuts he mentions work well - they don't work in Excel on my Mac without having to choose plain text from the popup on Excel.

    Thanks to this post (and comments) though I was able to quickly find a Mac alternative to PureText for anyone that might be interested. It's also free and available on the Mac App Store. It's called "Get Plain Text" and it just works.


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