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All killed text is recorded in the kill ring, a list of blocks of text that have been killed. There is only one kill ring, shared by all buffers, so you can kill text in one buffer and yank it in another buffer. This is the usual way to move text from one file to another. (See section H.9 Accumulating Text, for some other ways.)
The command C-y (
yank) reinserts the text of the most recent
kill. It leaves the cursor at the end of the text. It sets the mark at
the beginning of the text. See section H. The Mark and the Region.
C-u C-y leaves the cursor in front of the text, and sets the mark after it. This happens only if the argument is specified with just a C-u, precisely. Any other sort of argument, including C-u and digits, specifies an earlier kill to yank (see section H.8.3 Yanking Earlier Kills).
To copy a block of text, you can use M-w
kill-ring-save), which copies the region into the kill ring
without removing it from the buffer. This is approximately equivalent
to C-w followed by C-x u, except that M-w does not
alter the undo history and does not temporarily change the screen.