How to Do a Screen Shot

Eight Methods:Windows, Print Screen FeatureWindows, Snipping ToolMac OS X, Default Screen Grabbing FunctionMac OS X, Grab ToolMac OS X, Using the TerminalUbuntu Linux, Print Screen FeatureUbuntu Linux, Gnome ScreenshotUbuntu Linux, GIMP

If you need to show someone else what you see on your computer screen, or if you want to save what you see on your screen as is, what you need to do is take a screenshot. Use this guide to capture a screenshot of your desktop or active window in Windows, Mac, or Ubuntu Linux.

Method 1
Windows, Print Screen Feature

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 1
    1
    Press the Print Screen key on your keyboard.[1] This button will usually be labeled as prt sc, prt scrn, or prt scr.
    • To only capture the active window instead of the entire screen, hold down the Alt key as you press the Print Screen key.
    • Some keyboards and mobile computers do not have this key. Usually, though, the same function is still available using another set of keyboard combinations. For instance, your computer may require you to press Fn+Insert. Check your computer's instruction manual or keyboard's instruction manual for more accurate information.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 2
    2
    Open an image editing program. The default image editor for Windows is Paint. Navigate to this program by clicking on your Start menu, then clicking on Accessories, and finally clicking on Paint.
    • If using Windows 8, press the Window graphic key on your keyboard to return to your Start screen. Begin typing the word Paint to search for the application. Once it appears, click on th program tile to open it.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 3
    3
    Paste the image of your screen from your clipboard. Click on the Paste graphic in the upper left corner of your menu bar to paste the screenshot directly to your open Paint file. Note that this option is available under the Home tab.
    • You can also paste the screenshot by clicking on the Edit menu, followed by Paste.
    • For an even quicker shortcut, press Ctrl+v on your keyboard to paste the image.
  4. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 4
    4
    Choose Save As from the File menu to save the image.[2] If you click on the arrow next to Save As, you can specify which file format you want to save the image as.
    • The listed formats are Png, Jpeg, Bmp, and Gif. To save your file as another format, click on Other formats.
  5. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 5
    5
    Type a name for your new image. Type a memorable name for your image under File name.
    • Make sure that your image is saved in a location that will be easy to remember, like your Pictures folder.
    • If you have not done so already, select your file type under the Save as type menu in your Save As dialog box.
  6. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 6
    6
    Click the Save button. Hit this button in the Save As dialog box to save your image and complete the process.

Method 2
Windows, Snipping Tool

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 7
    1
    Navigate to the Snipping Tool. If using Windows 7 or Windows Vista, navigate to this tool by selecting Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> Snipping Tool.
    • Note that this feature is only available in Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows 8.
    • To open this tool using Windows 8, hit the Window graphic key on your keyboard to return to your Start screen. Begin typing "Snipping Tool" to automatically start a search for the application. Once the result pops up, click on it to open the tool.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 8
    2
    Click on the down arrow next to New. You could click the New button to automatically open a new rectangular selection snip, but clicking on the arrow provides you with more snipping types.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 9
    3
    Choose your snipping type. The available options are Free-form Snip, Rectangular Snip, Window Snip, and Full-screen Snip.
    • Free-form Snip will allow you to draw a free-form shape around the area you want to take a screenshot of.
    • Rectangular Snip is the default option and will allow you to draw a rectangle around the area you want to take a screenshot of.
    • Window Snip will take a screenshot of your active window.
    • Full-screen Snip will take a screenshot of your entire screen.
  4. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 10
    4
    Select the area you want to capture, if applicable. If you selected Free-form Snip or Rectangular Snip, you will need to draw a selection box or other shape around the portion of your screen you wish to capture.
    • A new window containing that image will automatically pop up once your selection is complete.
  5. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 11
    5
    Choose Save As from the File menu in your new window. This will open the Save As dialog box, where you can save the screenshot.
  6. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 12
    6
    Type in your file name and change the type. Type in a name for your file and change the file type as desired.
    • The available file types are png, gif, jpeg, and single file html.
    • Make sure to save the image to your Pictures folder or another location you will be able to navigate to later.
  7. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 13
    7
    Click the Save button. This will save the screenshot and complete the process.

Method 3
Mac OS X, Default Screen Grabbing Function[3]

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 14
    1
    Press Cmd+Shift+3 on your keyboard. This will capture the entire screen.
    • Mac OS X automatically saves the screenshot to your desktop as a Png file.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 15
    2
    Press Cmd+Shift+4 on your keyboard. This will turn your cursor into a crosshair. Drag a rectangle around the portion of your screen you wish to capture by clicking and dragging the crosshair around it.
    • Mac OS X automatically saves the selection as screenshot. It will be saved to your desktop as a Png file.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 16
    3
    Press Cmd+Shift+4 on your keyboard, followed by the Spacebar. The crosshair turns into a camera icon. Click on the window or object you want to take a screenshot of using this camera.
    • Mac OS X automatically saves the selected window as a screenshot to your desktop. The file will be saved in Png format.

Method 4
Mac OS X, Grab Tool

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 17
    1
    Navigate to the Grab tool from your Applications. Follow the pathway Applications -> Utilities -> Grab.
    • This will cause the Grab toolbar to appear.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 18
    2
    Open the Capture menu. You should notice several menu options along the toolbar. Click on Capture, usually positioned next to the Edit menu.
    • A drop-down menu will appear.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 19
    3
    Select the capture type. You can capture a screenshot as a Selection, Window, Screen, or Timed Screen.
    • Taking a Selection will allow you to select a specific area of your screen to take a picture of.
    • Taking a Window will take a picture of a specific, open window.
    • Taking a Screen will take a picture of the entire screen.
    • Taking a Timed Screen will allow you to delay the screenshot by 10 seconds.
  4. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 20
    4
    Select an area you want to capture, if applicable. If you choose the Selection option, you will need to draw a box around the area you want to take a screenshot of.
    • A crosshair should appear in place of your cursor. Click and drag this crosshair around the area you want to save.
  5. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 21
    5
    Choose Save from the File menu. Your screenshot should automatically appear on the screen. All you need to do is save it.
    • The file will be saved as a Tiff image.
  6. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 22
    6
    Type in a file name. Change the file name to something memorable.
    • If desired, you can also change the location of your file from the Save dialog box.
  7. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 23
    7
    Click the Save button. This saves the file and completes the process.

Method 5
Mac OS X, Using the Terminal

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 24
    1
    Navigate to the terminal. You can access the terminal by following the path Applications -> Utilities -> Terminal.
    • This will cause your terminal or "command prompt" to open as the active window.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 25
    2
    Type in the screenshot command. The basic screenshot command is screencapture -iW ~/Desktop/screen.jpg.[4]
    • Change "Desktop" to whichever folder pathway you want to save your image to.
    • Change "screen.jpg" to match the file name and type you want your screenshot to have.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 26
    3
    Hit the Enter key. Hitting the Enter key on your keyboard will take a screenshot of your entire screen and save it using the name, file type, and location you specified in your command.
    • This completes the process.

Method 6
Ubuntu Linux, Print Screen Feature

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 27
    1
    Hit the Print Screen key on your keyboard. Strike the prt sc key on your keyboard to take an image of your entire screen.
    • Hold down the Alt key simultaneously to limit the screenshot to your currently active window.
    • Note that if you do not have this key on your keyboard, you should consult the instruction manual for your keyboard or computer to find out the equivalent keystroke option.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 28
    2
    Open an image editor. Due to the customized nature of Ubuntu Linux, there is no single image editor to choose from. Instead, you should choose whichever image editor you have on your computer or whichever you prefer to use.
    • You can usually find your image editor by navigating to Applications -> Accessories.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 29
    3
    Paste the image to the editor. Depending on your image editor, there may be a variety of ways to do this. The simplest way covers all possible applications, though. Hit Ctrl+v on your keyboard to paste the image into your editor's window.
    • Note that you can usually find a paste option under the File or Edit menu of a program, as well.
  4. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 30
    4
    Navigate to the Save function. This can usually be found by clicking on the File menu, followed by clicking on Save or Save As.
    • A Save dialog box will usually pop open as a result.
  5. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 31
    5
    Type in your file name. Change the file name to something you can remember.
    • If your graphic editor allows it, you can also change the file type and file location at this point.
  6. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 32
    6
    Hit the Save button. Clicking on this button, or its equivalent, should save your file and complete the process.

Method 7
Ubuntu Linux, Gnome Screenshot[5]

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 33
    1
    Navigate to the screenshot tool from the Applications menu. Follow the pathway Applications -> Accessories -> Take Screenshot.
    • Note that the gnome-screenshot utility is only available through the GNOME Desktop Environment. You may not be able to access it from other environments.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 34
    2
    Choose your screenshot method. In the Take Screenshot dialog box that opens, choose whether you want to "Grab the whole desktop," "Grab the current window," or "Select area to grab." Also indicate if you want to grab the image after a delay.
    • Selecting "Grab the whole desktop" will automatically create and save a screenshot of the entire screen.
    • Selecting "Grab the current window" will automatically create and save a screenshot of the active window.
    • Selecting "Select area to grab" will turn your cursor into a crosshair. Click and drag this crosshair to create a rectangle around the area you want to select.
    • You can also set the number of seconds the grab function should wait before taking the screenshot.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 35
    3
    Specify the effects. You can indicate whether you want to include a pointer or include a window border by checking the corresponding tickboxes.
    • Selecting "Include pointer" will cause your cursor to appear in the screenshot. Deselecting it will remove the cursor from your image.
    • Selecting "Include the window border" applies only if you choose to "Grab the current window." The border around your window will be included in the image if you select this box, but it will be erased if you deselect this box.
  4. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 36
    4
    Click the Take Screenshot button. Click on this button to take and save your screenshot using the settings you specified.
    • This completes the process.

Method 8
Ubuntu Linux, GIMP

  1. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 37
    1
    Open GIMP. If you have the advanced image editor GIMP on your computer, you can create a screenshot directly from the program. Open it by navigating to Applications -> Accessories -> GIMP.
  2. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 38
    2
    Create a screenshot from the File menu. From the program's File menu, select Create, and then select Screenshot... from the options that appear in the new sub-menu.
    • This will open the Screenshot dialog box.
  3. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 39
    3
    Specify the type of screenshot you want to create. You can choose to "Take a screenshot of a single window," "Take a screenshot of the entire screen," or "Select a region to grab."
    • Choosing "Take a screenshot of a single window" will cause GIMP to take a screenshot of only one window. You will need to select which window to use.
    • Choosing "Take a screenshot of the entire screen" will take a screenshot of the entire screen as it is.
    • Choosing "Select a region to grab" will turn your cursor into a crosshair. Click and drag the crosshair to form a rectangle around the area you want to take an image of.
  4. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 40
    4
    Indicate if there should be a delay. You can change the number of seconds by typing the value in or by scrolling up and down using the arrows next to the "seconds" box.
    • If you want no delay, then leave it at "0" seconds.
  5. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 41
    5
    Click the Snap button. This will close the dialog box and take a screenshot using the specifications you indicated.
    • Your image should appear in the GIMP program.
  6. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 42
    6
    Choose Save As from your File menu. This will open the Save As dialog box, allowing you to save your screenshot.
  7. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 43
    7
    Type in a file name. Change the file name to something applicable.
    • Also change the location and file type as desired.
  8. Image titled Do a Screen Shot Step 44
    8
    Click the Save button. Clicking on this button will save your screenshot and complete the process.

Tips

  • The Windows "clipboard" is a term used to describe the temporary storage space in memory where an item is placed when you copy or cut. When you paste, the item is transferred to the program you're working in. If you copy something else, the old item is replaced with the new. You can't manipulate the clipboard directly; it's only used for copy and paste operations.

Article Info

Categories: Basic Computer Skills