Download: Insert Formatted Clipboard for WLW Setup
WLW Beta2 Update: WLW Beta2 now support pasting formatted clipboard contents so I was going to pull this tool. But for some reason this tool still produces better results (as far as I can tell). So if you’re not happy with the default paste results, this tool may help.
WLW doesn’t support pasting rich content from the clipboard. Try copying something from IE or an Office product (Word, Excel, etc) and paste it into WLW, just plain text is all you get. With this plugin, you can paste clipboard contents and keep most of that nice formatting.
How it Works
This plugin uses the IE DHTML Editing Control behind the scenes to parse the clipboard contents into a valid block of HTML. MS Word is known for it’s messy HTML, but this does a fine job of cleaning it up. It uses the technique I discussed in Copy Paste HTML From MS Word: IE’s DHTML Editing Control (in a .NET WinApp). This is wrapped into a plugin using the WLW SDK.
Using the Plugin
You can use this with any app that puts HTML onto the clipboard. This includes IE, FireFox, Word, Excel, etc. By using this control, I can get nicely formatted C# code into my posts (see Tip: Beautifully Formatted .NET C# Code in Blog Post). There is another Insert Code plugin for WLW, but I don’t care for it. WLW has a hard limit of 32k of HTML code, which you can rapidly hit by inserting too much formatted HTML, so be aware of this.
When using this plugin, it doesn’t include images or get a perfect rendition of the clipboard contents, but it does a pretty good job. Try it out on this HelloWorld.doc file. WLW doesn’t always render just right in HTML view. You’ll get the most accurate rendering when the post is published and you view it in the browser. Pressing F11 in WLW will rerender the HTML view and sometimes helps.
Windows Live Writer Gallery
My submission to the WLW Gallery is currently pending. I’ll update this post with the link to the tool there when it has been approved.