How do you cut and paste in Finder?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by saintforlife, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. saintforlife macrumors 6502a

    Feb 25, 2011
    My MBA is my first Mac and the cut and paste function is something I use a lot in Windows to move files. How do you enable this on a Mac? Is there a keyboard short cut that works as a substitute? I am on Snow Leopard btw.
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    There is no cut and paste in Finder by default.
  3. Macman45 macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    Just Use

    Copy and paste, or just drag the folders or files to the required destination...
  4. saintforlife thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 25, 2011
    Well that is just stupid. Now I have to go back to the folder I copied the files from and delete them. Why are people forced to do this extra step? Why can't Apple just include the 'Cut' option in right click next to the 'Copy' option. If you can enable copy, how hard is it to enable cut? I just don't get some things with Macs. Just because they happen to not use/like it doesn't mean there are other who actually need and use them.
  5. Macman45 macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago

    I can't say it's ever been an issue for me...
  6. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    There are numerous threads on this issue already. There are various third-party solutions that add cut and paste, but I'm not sure how well they work with Lion.

    As for why; Apple decides what functionality you need. People should understand that by now.
  7. Troneas macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2011
    At the alternatives section.
    i was told that the logic was that if you cut a file, and suddenly your machine powered off without pasting it first, you lost the file. so its a precaution measure.

    but i agree with you. it was one of the few things i truly missed from windows.
  8. saintforlife thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 25, 2011
    I can tell you from experience that I find that to believe. The file is truly not 'cut' from its original location unless you 'paste' it at a new location. Done it multiple times on Windows, many times I've Ctrl-Xed something and totally forgotten to paste it and the original file is always there.
  9. zepman macrumors regular


    Jul 1, 2010
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    Copy the file first, cmd + c.
    Then "Move item here" with alt + cmd + v.

    That will behave like cut and paste.
  10. DouchGod, Dec 3, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2011

    DouchGod macrumors regular


    Aug 23, 2010
    If you hold "Alt" as you drag a icon it will copy it to where you dragged it, you can drag through your directories just hover over a file and it will open.

    Also the poster above is correct.

    Command+C copies the files or documents, note they won’t be ‘cut’ yet
    Command+Option+V pastes the documents into the new location, cutting it from the prior locating and moving it to the new location
  11. n1tut macrumors regular

    Nov 20, 2010
    Glen of Newmill, Keith, Scotland
    What a load of bollocks. There is no reason why cut and paste should not be a function.

    I have changed over from PC to MBA this year, and Apple rocks, but this sort of narrow mindlessness is just petty.

  12. QuarterSwede macrumors G3


    Oct 1, 2005
    Colorado Springs, CO
    There basically is in Lion. As mentioned by others it's more of a copy then move but the result is identical.
  13. theSeb macrumors 604


    Aug 10, 2010
    Poole, England
    There is. Cmd + c then cmd + alt + v as others have mentioned
  14. rocknblogger macrumors 68020


    Apr 2, 2011
    New Jersey
    There are a couple of apps that might help you with your transition. One is called Totalfinder which adds functionality to finder and adds cut/paste menu options.

    The other is called Pathfinder and is a replacement for finder. Either one is good but Pathfinder has a lot more functionality and options.

    Good luck!!
  15. fizzwinkus macrumors 6502a

    Jan 27, 2008
    i'm glad to see some people here know how to do it
  16. saintforlife thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Feb 25, 2011
    Is this tip applicable only to Lion? Because it doesn't seem to work for me on Snow Leopard. For 'Alt' I am just pressing the 'Option' button because it has both 'alt' at the top and 'option' at the bottom. Am I doing something wrong? Do I need to press an extra key to activate the 'alt' function on the 'option' key?
  17. Comeagain? macrumors 68020


    Feb 17, 2011
    Spokane, WA
    Apples narrow mindlessness is petty? The functionality is there, it's just called something different.
  18. ajack macrumors member

    May 31, 2010
    I think you should try Path Finder. But, it's somehow a waste cause Path Finder is not worth 40$ to add some extra command. However, you should try 30-free days using before purchasing (of course!)
  19. theSeb macrumors 604


    Aug 10, 2010
    Poole, England
    Yes, it's only been added in lion. I would suggest checking out path finder as others have suggested. I've been using it for a couple of years and I like it. It has more sensible sorting options and other functionality that makes it worth its price, in my opinion.
  20. iApple Mania macrumors member

    iApple Mania

    Jul 11, 2011
    Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii
  21. Stingray454 macrumors 6502

    Sep 22, 2009
    Fixed that for you. (cmd+D is duplicate, ie create a copy of the file in the same directory - so still somewhat accurate)
  22. LeandrodaFL macrumors 6502a


    Apr 6, 2011
    The time you take to open your destinatin folder and move the file/folder is a lot less then the time you take to cut and paste.

    Its ridicoulous, but taking the time to second press the mouse, drag the cursor to "cut", make sure its on cut, left click the selection, second click again on the destination, move he cursor to paste, make sure its set to paste, press left click.....MAN......

    just click once and move. simple as that lot faster, thanks apple for obligating me to get used to this.

    Once you get used, you never miss cut.
  23. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Agreed, file maintenance/management is superior in windows in part because of cut/paste.

    You can however get an app called Path Finder which adds that cut/paste functionality into file management.
  24. matrix07 macrumors 68040


    Jun 24, 2010
    Agree. Cmd+ drag & drop is the way to go.
  25. wikus macrumors 68000


    Jun 1, 2011
    Planet earth.
    That sounds like a major pain in the balls.

    TotalFinder is far superior. You get your choice of contextual menus to cut and paste, or use the keyboard commands to cut and paste; cmd+x to cut, and cmd+v to paste (essentially move).

    On top of having REAL cut/paste functionality, TotalFinder gives you this;


    1) Adds tabbed finder windows
    2) Splits the window to compare two folders
    3) Adds this to the default Finder, thereby not replacing it, but improving it.

    Theres a lot that Apple does right, but there are a few things that apple fails miserably at;

    1) Mouses (theyve always sucked)
    2) Removal of proper Expose in OS X 10.7 and 10.8
    3) The green button to maximize windows (doesnt actually maximize)
    4) The finder


    See my previous comment above.

    You won't regret TotalFinder, its what The Finder should have been by now.

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