Solved Office clipboard is not working right

March 12, 2015 at 10:56:35
Specs: Win XP Home SP2, Centrino 1.6 / 512
The Office clipboard has suddenly started working only intermittently in Office 365 (Home). For example, I either ctrl-c or click the Excel "copy" button, and only about one in 4 times does the cell stay highlighted. I always see the dashed lines around it for a second, but about 3 times out of 4 they instantly disappear. If I look at the clipboard, a "bad" copy results in showing the number value in the cell without an Excel icon. A "good" copy shows an Excel logo. There is no pattern to it. Sometimes I have to click copy 6 or 7 times before the cell stays highlighted. Sometimes, but rarely, it stays highlighted on the first click. More likely to stay highlighted on the first attempt after I close and reopen Excel.

Having similar problems in Word but not NOT in any non-Office application. For example, I can go to spreadsheets in Google drive and ctrl-c always results in a highlighted cell. I can copy and paste in other non-Office applications. I can copy a web address from the address bar in IE11 and paste it in the address bar of another tab - works without fail.

What I've tried:

1. Bought a new keyboard.

2. Deactivated Office 365. Uninstalled Office 365 (tried "Repair" first). Deleted all registry items under HKCU / Software / Microsoft / Office. Reinstalled Office 365.

3. System Restore to my oldest restore point (15 days ago).

4. Deleted all macros in personal.xlsb.

5. Deleted personal.xlsb.

6. Tried to uninstall with Revo so I could have it check for all remnants of Office, but I got an error message.

7. Set up another user and logged in as new user. I don't have the problem when logged in as the new user. That's why I really thought deleting the HKCU registry entries for Office 15 after uninstalling, and then reinstalling, would solve my problem.

8. Googled the issue endlessly. Found a lot of people who didn't know how the Office clipboard works, but only one person who was having the "intermittent" problem I am. Unfortunately, over the days his problem was getting troubleshooting advice on that forum, it spontaneously resolved itself.

Everything works absolutely fine on my laptop - problem is only on my desktop. Running Win 8.1 64-bit on both (Pro on desktop). Office 365 32-bit on both. Some setting are synced via logging in with my Windows Live account (my default login on both computers.

I use Excel daily on huge spreadsheets. The inability to copy and paste is obviously untenable. I need help!

message edited by smoddelm

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March 12, 2015 at 13:04:42
✔ Best Answer
This is a shot in the dark, but there was a problem, a while back,
where Skype was causing grief with Excel Copy/Paste.

It was supposedly fixed.

But, if you have an older version of Skype try updating everything Skype and see if that helps.

If I remember correctly it was the "Click to Call" function that was the culprit.

If you Google it you should get a lot of hits.


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March 12, 2015 at 14:08:41
Thanks for the suggestion. The only version of Skype I had installed is the "Metro" one that comes pre-installed with Win 8, I think. I deleted it altogether but it had no impact. I think the Metro apps get updated automatically, so it should have been the most recent version.

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March 12, 2015 at 15:14:12
4. Deleted all macros in personal.xlsb.

Did you try turning off any and all Add-Ins, not just Macros?


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Related Solutions

March 12, 2015 at 15:26:49
Hadn't thought of that, but since I did a reinstall the only add-in enabled is Acrobat PDFMaker. Just tried disabling but it had no effect.

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March 12, 2015 at 16:56:15
One other thing you can try is to start Excel in Safe Mode using the Command Line switches:

Select Start
Select Run

Then type: excel.exe /s

The command line switch /s or /safemode

"Forces Excel to bypass all files in the Application Data\Microsoft\Xlstart folder, the default XLStart folder located in the directory where Excel or Office is installed, and the alternate startup file location specified on the General tab of the Excel Options dialog box. It also forces Excel to bypass the toolbar file (Excel.xlb or <username>.xlb). You see "Safe Mode" in the Excel title bar."


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March 12, 2015 at 17:28:40
Just tried safe mode. Same result. It really seems like this is not a bad setting issue, since it randomly works about every 4th or 5th time. On the other hand, really strange that it works fine for the new user account I set up yesterday.

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March 13, 2015 at 06:43:25
Mike, back on your Skype comment. Though I had removed Skype from my computer, I noticed this morning that the Skype add-in for IE was still there. I uninstalled it and rebooted, and copy/paste has been working fine for me since (about 15 minutes ago). I posted my question on 3 forums and you're the only person who responded. Thanks for your help!

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March 13, 2015 at 06:53:16
Glad you got it working.


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