Copy or move files and folders

A file or folder can be copied or moved to a new location by dragging and dropping with the mouse, using the copy and paste commands, or by using keyboard shortcuts.

For example, you might want to copy a presentation onto a memory stick so you can take it to work with you. Or, you could make a back-up copy of a document before you make changes to it (and then use the old copy if you don't like your changes).

These instructions apply to both files and folders. You copy and move files and folders in exactly the same way.

Copy and paste files

  1. Select the file you want to copy by clicking on it once.

  2. Click Edit ▸ Copy, or press Ctrl+C.

  3. Navigate to another folder, where you want to put the copy of the file.

  4. Click Edit ▸ Paste to finish copying the file, or press Ctrl+V. There will now be a copy of the file in the original folder and the other folder.

Cut and paste files to move them

  1. Select the file you want to move by clicking on it once.

  2. Click Edit ▸ Cut, or press Ctrl+X.

  3. Navigate to another folder, where you want to move the file.

  4. Click Edit ▸ Paste to finish moving the file, or press Ctrl+V. The file will be taken out of its original folder and moved to the other folder.

Drag files to copy or move

  1. Open the file manager and go to the folder which contains the file you want to copy.

  2. Click File ▸ New Window (or press Ctrl+N) to open a second window. In the new window, navigate to the folder where you want to move or copy the file.

  3. Click and drag the file from one window to another. This will move it if the destination is on the same device, or copy it if the destination is on a different device.

    For example, if you drag a file from a USB memory stick to your Home folder, it will be copied, because you're dragging from one device to another.

    You can force the file to be copied by holding down the Ctrl key while dragging, or force it to be moved by holding down the Shift key while dragging.

You can't copy or move a file into a folder that is read-only. Some folders are read-only to prevent you from making changes to their contents. You can change things from being read-only by changing file permissions .