Warning on copy and paste

Some problems have been experienced with copying and pasting. The scenario was: End user sat at Microsoft Windows and used PuTTY to log into a machine running a virtual machine. (So, PuTTY was was to log into computer that was running the “virtual machine” software, not logging directly into the virtual machine.)

It is speculated that the text that was pasted was simply provided to the virtual machine instantly, and the pasted text overflowed the keyboard buffer on the virtual machine. Characters were lost. It was a problem when making script files.

One partial solution might be to access the virtual machine using SSH (either directly from the machine doing the copy and paste operations, or by using SSH from the machine that is running the virtual machine software). While developing this course, the problem had been experienced even when using SSH sessions. (As a result, the course was adapted by splitting up text for people to “copy and paste”, so hopefully that will avoid the experience of having missing characters.) The problem was definitely much more noticeably frequent when not using SSH. So, until SSH gets used, be quite careful (especially in upcoming steps which may involve pasting a very long command line, or pasting lines of text into a text file).

An attempted work-around has been implemented, which is to shorten the command lines. This is a key reason why some guides may show the output of downloading commands is being redirected to a local file with a relatively short path name, instead of just outputting directly to the desired destination. Using the short path name caused the process to have multiple steps, so each line could be copied and pasted without copy-and-paste errors. Still, keeping the potential problem in mind, especially whenever pasting a large amount of text, may be prudent/wise. In this case, the phrase “large amount of text” was found to mean more than 115 characters (in at least one situation where the problem occurred).