In computing, control-X is a control character in ASCII code, also known as the cancel (CAN) character. It is generated by pressing the key while holding down the key on a computer keyboard.

Relation to Cut

In many GUI environments, including Windows Explorer, GNOME, KDE, XFCE and most other desktop environments based on the X Window System, and in applications such as word processing software running in those environments, Control-X can be used to cut highlighted text to the clipboard. Control-X was one of a handful of keyboard sequences chosen by the program designers at Xerox PARC to control text editing. Presumably these particular keystrokes were chosen because of their location on a standard QWERTY keyboard, since the Z (undo), X (cut), C (copy), and V (paste) keys are located together at the left end of the bottom row of the standard QWERTY keyboard. The equivalent Mac OS key combination on Apple computers is Command-X (or Apple-X).

Software that uses this binding


  • ASCII and Unicode representation of "Cancel":
  • : Octal code: 30
  • : Decimal code: 24
  • : Hexadecimal code: 18, U+0018
  • : Mnemonic symbol: CAN

See also

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