Apps We Actually Use: Collective as a clipboard manager for everything but the kitchen sink

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Kelly Hodgkins
June 26, 2014 8:00 PM
In this article: Mac, OS X, review, Software
Apps We Actually Use: Collective as a clipboard manager for everything but the kitchen sink


In my daily routine, I spend a lot of time copying URLs for websites, text for articles and links for apps. As a result, one of the most important apps in my workflowl is my clipboard manager. After months of searching for the perfect solution and finding a lot of duds, I finally stumbled upon Collective last year and have been using it ever since. The app was recently updated to version 2.0, which made the clipboard manager even better by adding features such as favorites, shortcuts and a detail bar with information about each clipboard entry.


Collective keeps a running history of your clipboard with a customizable number of saved entries ranging from 10 to 2500. I keep it at 50 as that is a reasonable amount of content for me to access at any given time. The app stores everything, including text, images, PDFs, URLs, files and more. Collective even has a blacklist that ignores copied content from specific apps, allowing you to use the list for only your most important clipboard material.

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Your clipboard history sits idle in your menu bar or pinned to your screen until you need it. Just press ⌘-Shift-V to call up the list and scroll until you see the item that you need. You also can search for an entry or filter by source application to find items faster. Items that you frequently access can be saved for a favorites list and called up quickly. Once you find the content you want to copy/paste, just select it, and Collective will automatically paste it into the destination app for you.


Collective is fast, responsive and has no effect on the performance of my 2013 MacBook Air, which chugs along with a 1.3 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 and 4 GB RAM. In my months of usage, I've never had Collective beach ball or cause any other known issues with OS X Mountain Lion or Mavericks. Collective is always there, right when I need it.

Collective is available in the Mac App Store for $1.99, which makes it a must-have for any Mac user looking for quick and easy access to their clipboard history.

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