ClipConvert – Clipboard Data Converter


ClipConvert is a utility to fix a problem that Windows 95 and 98, and in some cases NT, have when copying/pasting text
in a codepage different from the system codepage. Something you run across often when doing localization tasks.
In addition, it’s also a good tool to examine the content of the Clipboard.

Environment: Windows 9x and NT 4.x

ClipConvert Purpose

Windows applications uses different formats to communicate with the Clipboard.
When the text copied is not in the same codepage as the system codepage, this may
cause lost of data.

For example:

If you copy let’s say Russian text from Word. The Clipboard contains RTF and Unicode data as
well as Plain text data. But because your system codepage is not 1251 (Cyrillic) the
Plain text data are converted into question marks. An application like Notepad does not
use RTF or Unicode but Plain text and will paste question marks instead of the Russian
text (even if you have Russian support installed and could type Russian text in Notepad).

To fix this, ClipConvert takes the Unicode text Word places in the Clipboard
and converts it to its proper code set (that you can pick). When Notepad pastes the Plain text
the Cyrillic characters are correct.


If you copy Russian text from Notepad. The Clipboard contains only Plain text data
(in Cyrillic). When you paste it in Word (96 or later), because it expects the Plain text
to be in the same codepage as the system codepage, the Cyrillic characters are lost
and replaced by whatever extended character the system codepage has at the same

To fix this, ClipConvert takes the Plain text data and creates RTF and Unicode entries
based on the codepage you pick. When Word paste the text, it can use the RTF or Unicode data
rather than the Plain text, and pastes the proper Cyrillic characters.

You should close ClipConvert or disable the “Auto-convert” options when
doing “normal” Copy/Paste commands. Use it only when exchange text in a non-system codepage
between two applications not using the same Clipboard data.
ClipConvert can also be useful to look at what an application places in the Clipboard.

The Implementation

When starting, ClipConvert inserts itself into the Clipboard chain and monitors any
Copy command. If the “Auto-convert” option is set, it immediately converts the Clipboard
contents according the rules described above. The next time an application executes a
Paste command, it gets the converted data

To be more generic, ClipConvert uses its own code sets tables, allowing to convert more
than just the Windows codepages. The package posted here includes conversion tables for all
Windows codepages, including Thai, Arabic, Hebrew, Japanese, Chinese, etc. as well as
for UTF-8 and UCS-2. Contact me if you need Macintosh or ISO tables.


Download the executable – (130 Kb)

Contains the executable, on-line help and support for all Windows languages, except
Japanese, Chinese and Korean. To install: Create a folder and extract all the files in it.

Download the Asian codepage tables – (244 Kb)

Contains support for Japanese, Chinese and Korean. To install: Extract all the files in
the folder where ClipConvert.exe is located.

More by Author

Must Read