document management

IMatch and the Windows Clipboard

clipboard iconThe clipboard is a fundamental component in Windows that enables users to exchange data between applications.

The digital asset management system IMatch supports the clipboard in many creative ways, making it super easy to exchange data with other application. This know-how article gives you a quick overview of all the clipboard functionality available in IMatch.

Copying File Names

Select one or more files in a File Window and then press <Ctrl>+<C> to copy the fully qualified file names of all selected files into the clipboard. You can also use the corresponding command available in the File Window context menu.

When copying the file names, IMatch puts each name into a separate line, using carriage return / linefeed pairs to separate the lines. This format is ideal to transfer the file names into other software like text editors, Office applications or web browsers.

Copy one file name to quickly insert the name into a File Open dialog in another application, a command prompt window or the Windows Explorer address bar.

Tip: After copying files into the clipboard, you can paste (copy) or cut (move) them into another folder inside IMatch. If you instead paste them into a category, they will be assigned to that category. This is an easy way to copy/move files between folders or categories.

Copying Folder, Category and Collection Names

Select one or more folders in the Media & Folders View and then press <Ctrl>+<C> to copy the fully qualified names into the clipboard. To copy category or collection names, apply the same principle in the Category or Collection Views.

Copying Images

You can copy the file currently selected in the File Window as an image into the clipboard:

Copying files as images
Copying images to the Windows clipboard via the context menu in the File Window.

IMatch loads the existing cache image (or creates one on-the-fly), renders Annotations (if you have added any to the file) and copies the result in bitmap format into the clipboard. This format is compatible with all applications which support transferring of image data via the clipboard.

Copying Files

To copy one or more files from IMatch to Windows Explorer, select the files and press <Ctrl>+<C>. Then switch to Windows Explorer, navigate to the folder to which you want to copy the files and press <Ctrl>+<V>. Exactly as you would do it in Windows Explorer itself. This method allows you to quickly copy files from IMatch to folders not managed by your database.

You can also use mouse drag & drop to copy files from IMatch to Windows Explorer, or to open files from IMatch in other applications.

There’s  Still More…

This know-how article covers only the clipboard commands which allow you to copy data from IMatch to other applications.

IMatch itself uses the clipboard for many additional features and commands, e.g., to copy/move files, folders and categories, to assign files to categories, to add files to collections, to copy and move categories, to create Favorites and much more. Please see the IMatch Help for detailed information and examples.

The know-how article about the Copy Data App shows another way to copy arbitrary metadata from IMatch to other applications via the Windows clipboard.

Using the Copy Data App with Your Office Application


Exchanging data with other applications is one of the key features for an digital asset management system like IMatch.

If you want to transfer data from IMatch to your Office application, e.g., Microsoft® Excel, you can use the  Text Export Module to output the data to a file on disk. See the IMatch help on the Text Export module for detailed information.

An alternative is to use the neat Copy Data App. This App allows you to quickly copy arbitrary formatted data into the Windows clipboard and then you can insert it into your Office or other application. For this know-how article we use Microsoft Excel as the receiving application.

The Copy Data App in IMatch. Three files are selected in a File Window.
The Copy Data App in IMatch. This App comes pre-installed and with full source code.
(Click for a larger view)

Open an App Panel if none is visible: View menu > Panels > App Panel or press <F9>,<1>.

What to Copy?

The Copy Data App uses a mix of free text and IMatch variables to specify which data to copy. This makes it easy to produce exactly the format you want to use in your other application. The special [tab] token can be used to insert a tabulator character (09hex) and by pressing <Enter> you start a new line.

For this example, we want to copy the fully qualified file name, the file date in DD.MM.YYYY format, the XMP headline and the XMP description. Since we want to copy into Microsoft Excel, we separate each variable with a [tab]. This ensures that Excel automatically arranges the four values into separate columns.

We are using a free mix of text and variables to specify what to copy.
We are using a free mix of text and variables to specify what to copy.

Copy the text from below into the Copy Data App input field if you want to try this yourself:


Copy the Data

When we now click on the Copy button in the App, IMatch copies the requested data for all selected files into the Windows clipboard. From there we can insert it into the receiving application.

The data in Microsoft Excel
The data in Microsoft Excel. Click for a larger view.