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How can we improve Excel for Windows (Desktop Application)?

May 2017 update which keeps the copied item active in the clipboard

Regarding the issue of...It's part of the May 2017 update which keeps the copied item active in the clipboard even if you do things that would normally clear it, like typing in a cell, applying formatting, etc.

Pressing ESC will clear the marquee/dancing ants.

Why in the world would Microsoft and an extra step here. This is terrible. At least give us the option to turn off the function. Please change this back or give us the option. Very disappointed!

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Anonymous shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

Keep the Copy was designed to improve the experience of copying content to your clipboard based on customer requests. Copy and Paste functionality is different in Excel than most other applications because results from formulas can change and due to the large size of worksheets. Since making the improvements there has been mixed feedback about the changes that we made and it is not up to our quality standards. Effective today, Keep the Copy will be removed from Excel until we have improved the quality and design of this feature.

Eric Patterson
Excel Program Manager


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  • Todd Hutchison commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Something seems to have changed again now and it is worse than it was originally. Now, it looks like the insert function is again automatic and worse there is now not even an option to just go to the ribbon and click insert blank cells. I have to hit escape insert the blank cells and then go back and copy what I want to copy and insert.

    this latest change is now truly a nightmare.

    If I make a copy of say three cells in a different workbook and then try to insert blank rows in a new workbook the copied cells from the other workbook, will automatically spread across all the new inserted rows to infinity. I then have to delete the inserted rows. Escape the copied cells. Insert new rows and go back and copy the two or three cells that I wanted and insert them where I wanted them in the new rows. This is so ridiculous and beyond frustrating. I have no idea why they was ever changed, as has been stated so many times in this post, just give people the option of inserting blank cells or inserting copied cells and let us decide which one we want.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This is very poorly conceived and goes way beyond keyboard shortcuts for me. I frequently I/O data via the clipboard manipulating it in ways that are difficult to do in Excel (yes, there is such a thing). I do this at a prompt via:
    powershell –command “get-clipboard | myCommand| set-clipboard”

    If you're not familiar with the prompt (or powershell), no matter. This just takes some Excel data (on the clipboard), does something with it (via myCommand) and then puts it back on the clipboard. Functionally it's as if you modified it in Word (although I don't know why you'd do that) but you can try it yourself with copy-paste something from Excel to Word, modify it in Word, and then copy-paste back to Excel.
    Previously I was able to paste the new/modified data back into Excel in one step but alas no longer. Now after executing the above command, returning to Excel, and then selecting the destination cell, the new additional steps are:
    1. press Esc. Without doing this, pressing Ctrl-v or clicking on paste will simply place the original data.
    2. ensure the clipboard is open in Excel
    3. find my data (most recent at the top of the clipboard list) and click on it to paste it

    Because I've just pressed Esc (which is required to clear the "dancing ants"), it's impossible to not have the clipboard open and simply use Ctrl-v instead (well that is w/o even more steps). The "brain-child" of this functionality is apparently too short sighted to have considered this. Further this forces me to use the mouse, which defeats the purpose of having shortcuts such as Ctrl-c and Crtl-v. Very poorly conceived.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Allowing us to Insert Copied Cells Multiple times without having to recopy was very useful for my particular job I would love this feature added back as an option

  • Bianchi commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I didn't like. Excel should give us the option to disable the feature.

  • Mooshki commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I LOVED 'Keep the Copy.' I miss it so, so much. I work in Excel almost all day long, and it saved me so much time. I also hope it comes back very, very soon!

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I stumbled upon this thread while searching Google for ways to keep my copy data persistent in Excel. I too wish for its return as soon as possible as it would improve my productivity greatly.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    So how do I get rid of the Keep the Copy in my current version of Excel? Do I have to Delete and Re-install Excel?

  • Silvia commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    As it happens, forcing all users into one option will disappoint half of them. Keeping Excel's copied cells active indefinitely is very dangerous when you are using Excel alongside different programs and you need to copy&paste back and forth from them.
    Why Excel developers can't devise a way to enable/disable such a dangerous feature? Perpetual license is becoming too dangerous an option for many

  • Kirk commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Please put this feature back in.... I thought it was the best feature to come along in a long time!!!

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Help! I loved that I could copy multiple lines once in Excel and insert those copies in multiple places in the worksheet without re-copying each time. Removing the Keep the Copy function has DOUBLED my workload! PLEASE, give us the option to turn that function on or off!

  • J Piggott commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Please bring this feature back! Or at least give us the option of turning it on?
    I found the feature absolutely essential when copying certain 'templated' groups of cells, and needed to insert this template into several areas of the same worksheet.

  • keridwen cheetham commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This drove me nuts. Excel kept crashing when complex formulae were sudden pasted into a complete row when I just wanted to add a blank row. I appreciate that may be different from, say, Word but Word and Excel are used in wholly different ways. I subscribed to the thread so saw I was in no way alone. I’m very, very happy it’s been turned off.

    The thread now seems to be used by people who want it turned on so I’m seeing all those messages.

    I think it highlights the need for things this fundamental to people’s daily usage of the software to be made optional when they are introduced.

  • Robert commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Of all the things to do, why completely remove one of the best improvements from the past year. Bring back "Keep a Copy".

  • Sham commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I want it back too! I found it very helpful as I often need to paste the same information while in-between doing some searching, typing, etc.. I don't really understand the complaints because every other program keeps the copied info in the clipboard. Also, what is the harm ... if you don't want to paste it again then don't. When you want to copy something else it doesn't prevent you or cause any additional work.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    We need to bring this back even if with an enable/disable switch somewhere that each user can control on their own so people who don't like it, don't have to deal with it and people who use it on a daily basis don't have to add hours of data entry onto their schedule per day.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I LOVED Keep the Copy function, I used it every day! Now that it is gone I'm not happy and it is taking a lot longer for me to perform certain tasks in my spread sheets. Please BRING IT BACK. :(

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