I'd be very surprised if this doesn't trouble anyone else.

Sometimes I want to paste a copied file in a Finder window, but there is just no "empty" space for me to right-click on and hit 'Paste item', as right-clicking anywhere on this window will open the right-click context menu for a file/folder.

Usually, I just resize the window till I can find some empty space below all the files/folders for me to right-click on, but sometimes (as in my screenshot below) there are way too many files/folders for to resize the finder window up to that point.

enter image description here


How can I be able to right-click somewhere (to know exactly where I'm pasting) and hit 'Paste Item'?

As you can tell, I am currently using the column view, and hope there is a solution in this view. I also do not just want to hit Cmd+V because it's hard to tell which is the target directory when I have a folder open in the column-view.

4 Answers 4


It seems that the problem you're trying to solve is actually this:

it's hard to tell which is the target directory when I have a folder open in the column-view

If your preferred method is clicking, you can still be sure of your target directory by left-clicking. Either:

  • Click on the name of the folder you want to paste into, or
  • Click on the name of a file that's already in the folder you want to paste into.

(In the crowded view you describe, you should still be able to do at least one of these two.) Then just choose Edit > Paste or use +V.


The settings-wheel ("Action") button on the Finder acts as a right-click on the current folder. If you left-click on it, you'll get all the options you would on right-clicking the current folder, including "Paste Item". I've indicated it with an arrow below:

A screenshot showing the location of the Action button


Well, if I use +V keys to paste, it does not matter if a file or folder is highlighted. The file is pasted to the folder currently open in the Finder window.

If you want to just copy a file to a folder by drag and drop, hold down the option key before dragging the file.

  • command+V is not possible when someone to trying to move file I guess because there is no command+X in MAC unlike in Windows OS so instead of memorizing another keyboard shortcut or something, one can prefer to use the right click context menu but not possible in this particular case Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 10:44

Using the option key and right clicking in this view allows you to achieve exactly what you're asking

Use the OPTION key and right click

  • Maximus I think your answer might be wrong and overlooks the specific details that Andeart is asking, I believe you meant Control and right click, however this wouldn't work if there is no blank space to right click on as it would select the folder under the cursor. Commented Aug 14, 2018 at 14:21
  • I'm 100% right, in Column view try using Option and right click and you'll see what I'm on about.
    – Maximus
    Commented Aug 15, 2018 at 10:50
  • Maximus, I have tried it and it looks like it works if you have right click enabled, but Control + Option and Click doesn't work. So we're both right I guess Commented Aug 15, 2018 at 10:53
  • Yes it's obvious you have to have right click enabled because the original post says he's trying to right click so he obviously has it enabled. Secondly you only need to enable right click if you're using an Apple Mouse anyway
    – Maximus
    Commented Aug 15, 2018 at 10:56

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .