Posted By Shahid Malla

How To Copy, Cut, and Paste in Nano Editor on Linux (For Mac and Windows Users) - Shahid Malla - WHMCS Expert Freelancer

Nano is a straightforward, user-friendly text editor for Linux. It’s an excellent tool for beginners due to its simplicity and ease of use. This guide will help you understand how to install Nano, as well as how to perform basic operations like opening, editing, copying, cutting, and pasting text within the editor. Let’s start from the beginning, ensuring everything is explained in simple and clear language.

Installing Nano

Most Linux distributions come with Nano pre-installed. However, if you need to install it, here’s how:

  • On Ubuntu/Debian: Open your terminal and type:
  sudo apt-get update
  sudo apt-get install nano
  • On CentOS/Fedora: Use this command instead:
  sudo yum install nano

Starting Nano

  • To open Nano, simply type nano in your terminal. To open or create a specific file with Nano, type:
  nano [filename]

Replace [filename] with your desired file name.

Basic Nano Operations

Opening and Editing Files
  • Open a File: Type nano filename where ‘filename’ is the name of your file.
  • Edit Text: Use your arrow keys to move the cursor and start typing to edit.
Copying, Cutting, and Pasting Text
  • Copying Text:
  1. Move the cursor to the start of the text you want to copy.
  2. Press Ctrl + Shift + ^ to start selecting text.
  3. Use arrow keys to select, then press Alt + 6 to copy.
  • Cutting Text:
  1. Select text using Ctrl + Shift + ^.
  2. Press Ctrl + K to cut.
  • Pasting Text:
  • Press Ctrl + U to paste at the cursor’s position.
Saving and Exiting
  • Save a File: Press Ctrl + O, hit Enter to confirm.
  • Exit Nano: Press Ctrl + X.

Additional Tips

  • Help in Nano: Press Ctrl + G for help.
  • Practice: Familiarize yourself with Nano by practicing these commands.
  • Mac and Windows Users: If accessing a Linux system via a Mac or Windows, the key commands remain the same.


Nano is a fantastic choice for anyone new to Linux or those who prefer a straightforward text editor. By understanding how to install and use Nano, you can efficiently manage files on your Linux system. Remember, practice is key to becoming proficient in any new software.

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