Windows Movie Maker: Tips for Using Cut, Copy and Paste

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Move Around

One Windows function that comes through completely in Windows Movie Maker is the basic Cut, Copy, and Paste. This feature, which is based off a principle used on text, simply allows you to take something, remove it, copy it, and replace it somewhere else. It began as an easy way to remove a piece of text and change its location or copy a piece of text and replicate it. Now it is standard for this function in a whole host of capacities, including video editing in Windows Movie Maker. Here are a few tips for using Cut, Copy, and Paste in Windows Movie Maker.

Keyboard Shortcuts

The first thing you have to remember is that the Windows shortcuts for Cut, Copy, and Paste are the same in Windows Movie Maker as they are in other Windows software, like Word or Excel. Instead of having to right click on something, or select it and go to Edit in the task bar, you can usually just highlight it and select Control and X to cut it or Control and C to copy it. Paste will then end up being Control and V. Though this is something good to remember you may end up finding that when working with the Timeline and Collections in Windows Movie Maker you will have an easier time using the right click instead.

Clip Removal

You will notice that you cannot delete a clip from the Timeline by highlighting it and hitting Backspace. Instead, Cut will come in handy for this. That is especially true when you want to delete large numbers of clips. For this just highlight all of them with your cursor, or select one on the end and then hold down shift and hit one on the other end. Now just right click Cut, or use the quick key shortcut.


Windows Movie Maker automatically rearranges clips. For example, when you move a clip out of one spot all the other clips readjust. The actually takes away some of the functionality of Copy and Paste because it tends to be so easy to put one clip into another place and impossible to keep gap locations. In this case you may have less of a use for Copy and Paste when working with the Windows Movie Maker Timeline.

Collections and Media Management

What you will find more useful is employing Copy and Paste for moving files from one Collection to another. Do not forget that this also works with going after source video in their original folders.