I am trying to copy/paste a 4 column table from LibreOffice Calc to LibreOffice Writer but when I paste it, it makes a table extraction from Calc. I also created a table in LibreOffice Writer using the Table tool in Writer an tried to paste the data from the Calc Table into the Writer Table. It created yet the same thing, another Calc Table copy.

So how can I grab the content of a 4 column table in Calc and paste it in a 4 column table from Writer.

8 Answers 8


Copy the sample data in Calc.

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If you try to directly paste into your original table all infos will be pasted into the first cell instead of several columns or rows, respectively.

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Instead put the cursor in an empty space in the document, e.g. a normal paragraph not a cell in a table.

In the Writer menu select Edit -> Paste Special (Ctrl + Shift + V) and then select "Formatted Text".

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Now you will see your table from Calc pasted into Writer.

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In the next step you can now select this table and copy and paste it into your original table.

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The advantage of this method is that you don't have to fix the bad formatting of paste special.

  • 7
    Yes, it works. But it is totally silly. Thumbs down for LibreOffice. I need this 10 years now. MS does it!
    – Chameleon
    Apr 2, 2015 at 18:06
  • 1
    Thanks for this solution. This is usually the desired behavior when you paste table data into a table in Writer. This should happen in one step even if it involves "Paste Special"
    – Alecz
    Apr 17, 2017 at 18:29
  • Awesome answer. Way better than the accepted one. Thanks
    – Martin
    Mar 16, 2018 at 18:48

Can I suggest, in Writer, choose Edit - Paste Special. Then select "Formatted Text". This will paste the text in a table which you can then format/add borders etc.

  • 16
    does not seem to work when pasting several columns into an existing table in writer. It will paste all columns into one single cell of the table instead several columns.
    – n3rd
    Sep 28, 2011 at 2:33
  • 4
    Edit->"Inhalte einfügen"->HTML or "Formatted Text" work great for me. Thanks!
    – alfonx
    Mar 14, 2012 at 19:05
  • 1
    Same problem faced by myself. Solution work only after i also did the trick suggested by @Alan Mar 22, 2013 at 5:45

This didn't work for me as it created dozens of tiny separate tables.

I then found a simple way around it as follows. (I was working with a large spreadsheet table about 50 rows and 10 columns.)

  1. In calc select the area reqired and copy it [ctrl - C]
  2. in writer on a plain bit of the page paste the clipboard as UNformatted text. It will paste with tabs between the cell data and carrige returns at the ends of the rows
  3. Select the whole text and use [table] [convert] [text to table] using the default settings

Works like magic

  • 5
    This answer changed my life forever. Oct 28, 2013 at 7:15
  • This works great if the cells all contain text or you don't mind losing the formatting. If you want to keep special formatting for numbers then you might prefer Sina's method. Dec 29, 2014 at 4:07
  • 2
    This is the proper answer Feb 12, 2015 at 11:33
  • 2
    In LibreOffice 6 at least, the shortcut for unformatted paste is Ctrl+Shift+Alt+V. So Ctrl+V = regular paste, Ctrl+Shift+V = paste special (dialog), Ctrl+Shift+Alt+V = paste unformatted.
    – MS Berends
    Dec 10, 2018 at 11:01
  • I just heard angels singing...
    – Digger
    Aug 17, 2020 at 22:06

if you fail to update the table contents by pasting, try pasting the data to somewhere empty on the page first, and the copy it back into the table, which works for me


My preferred way to paste (formatted) tables from Calc to Writer is via the HTML editor of LibreOffice. Do this:

  1. Copy the table from Calc,
  2. Paste it in the HTML editor,
  3. Copy again,
  4. Paste it in writer.

You will have your table pasted as a table (with the right number of columns and rows) and with a good part of formatting conserved.

  • This did the trick with an existing table, copying from spreadsheet and pasting as suggested in the HTML editor but we need to paste special as HTML in order to get an HTML table. After which all the formats in the existing table will be observed by the new data. Somehow, not the font size but the font itself is observed. Thank you very much. Mar 31, 2019 at 4:59

I tried all the different options offered by Edit -> Paste Special (Ctrl + Shift + V) and the one that worked best for me was the option of pasting it as HTML. This way it kept all the formatting and colors. It was a complex table with 11 columns and more than 200 rows with cells of different sizes.

All formating kept.

If it makes any difference I'm using Libreoffice It might work different on earlier versions.

Hope it helps.

  • I tried this with some decimal data. It keeps all the formatting but rounds fractional numbers to two decimal places. Dec 29, 2014 at 4:11

In LibreOffice version 7 you can do Paste Special > More Options > [and select the image format you need]

Paste image format dialog


When pasting from Calc into an existing table in Writer, then what worked for me best and quickest was to:

  1. Click somewhere inside your existing table in Writer, in the first column
  2. Select Edit -> Paste Special -> Paste as rows above

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