Aug 21, 2018 @ 4:32 pm

How to take screenshots on Windows Computer?

Screenshots are undisputedly useful, whether you’re trying to developing a how-to guide, or putting together documents/slides for a presentation. Screenshots do have other names, which are commonly used – Screen Capture, Screen Grab, Screen Dump, etc.

In simple terms, a screenshot just a clear photograph of whatever is currently shown on the Screen. Be it a Website, third-party tool or you’re your Desktop.

In most cases, screenshots provide a very effective visual representation, when you want to teach ‘how to do’ something. Here we’ve discussed various operative ways, to take a Screenshot in Windows and edit them.

Screenshot with Keyboard Shortcuts

1. Print Screen or Ctrl + Print Screen

Taking a screenshot in Windows as simple as tapping a keyboard button, regardless of which version of Windows you’re using. For it, press the “Print Screen” (PrntScr) key or “Ctrl + Print Screen” keys on your keyboard. On this action, Windows will take a screenshot of the whole screen and add it to its clipboard.

Print screen or Ctrl + PrintScreen

However, it will not save it as a file on the hard drive. To do it, you’ll need an image-editing program, like MS Paint, where you can paste the image saved in the clipboard. So, open MS Paint, choose the Paste option below the File menu, to paste the captured image.

You can also use the keyboard shortcut – “Ctrl + V” to paste the image, from the clipboard.

Edit the Screenshot

Now, within the MS Paint, you can perform various edits you want, like cropping, highlighting, adding texts, etc.

– To crop an image, click on the Selection tool and drag it over the intended portion of the image. Once you’re satisfied with the selected portion of the image, click on the Crop button, right after it.

– You can use the Shapes like Circle, Rectangle, etc. to highlight a specific area of the image. Moreover, you can even add text to the picture, inserting the textbox.

– You can even choose between the various file formats, like PNG, BMP, JPEG, etc. for your screenshots. For this, click the File menu and select the Save As option. Then, choose your preferred format, in the “Save as type” box.

2. Windows + Print Screen

Now, within the MS Paint, you can perform various edits you want, like cropping, highlighting, adding texts, etc.

Open MsPaint and paste the screenshot

Well, you think the process of capturing a screenshot and processing it within the Paint tool is too long? Then, here is an easier way, which saves the screenshot as an image file right away. Use the key combination “Windows + Print Screen”.

This will save the captured image, to the hard drive without using any tool. Yes, Windows will save the captured image in the Picture library, in the Screenshots folder, named as “Screenshot (number).png”.

captures saved by the name of Screenshot

3. Alt + Print Screen

In Windows, you can also capture a screenshot of, only the active window alone. Open any window that you want to take a screenshot of, and press “Alt + Print Screen”. This will save a screenshot of that specific window alone, to the clipboard.

Then open an image-editing program, like MS Paint as usual, and paste the image from the clipboard. Perform necessary edits that you want, just as explained previously, in the article.

4. Windows + Shift + S

If you are using Windows 10, you can use “Windows + Shift + S” to capture, only a specific portion of the screen. These keys dim the screen, while a cursor shows up. Now, you’ll have to drag around the screen, to fix the area to capture the screenshot.

Now, as usual, open any editing tool, to paste and save the screenshot.

Capture and Save Screenshot with OneDrive

This is again a procedure, specific to Windows 10. With it, you can capture a screenshot, using the Microsoft’s Cloud Storage Platform, OneDrive.

Once you open OneDrive, it will ask if you’d like to save the screenshots automatically to the cloud, when you hit “PrntScr”. This will help you easily capture and access the screenshots. Here, we’ve given some steps to use OneDrive to take a screenshot.

1. Open the OneDrive

You can find the OneDrive application in Windows 10, at the Start menu under “All Apps”. Open the OneDrive, and log in to the Microsoft account, by following the instructions on the screen.

2. Hit Print Screen Key

Press the “Print Screen” key and you will see a prompt notification from OneDrive. It will ask if you’d like to save the Screenshots to the OneDrive. Go ahead and confirm it. After this, you can save your Screenshot in png format, whenever you press the “PrintScreen” key.

Hit Prntscreen while onedrive is running

This also works for the “Alt + Print Screen”, which captures the Screenshot of only the active Window.

Sync across your screenshots in Onedrive

3. Edit and Share

Launch the OneDrive from the Start menu and open the “Pictures” folder. There, you’ll find the “Screenshots” folder, where all the captured Screenshots are stored.

You can edit those captured screenshots using an image editor, and also share them with your friends, using its link. This can be done by simply clicking the “Share as OneDrive link”.

A URL for sharing the screenshot will be copied to the clipboard. You can then paste the link into an email or chat’s message to share with the friends.

4. Screenshot with Snipping Tool

Windows comes with a built-in Snipping Tool that allows capturing screenshots, seamlessly. Screen capture techniques in Windows, we’ve discussed so far, are quite impressive and works well enough.

However, some of them aren’t still flexible, when it comes to saving screenshots of your screen. But, the Snipping Tool overcomes these inefficiencies prolifically.

How to use the Snipping tool?

1. Opening the Snipping Tool

You can open the Snipping Tool, in quite a few ways, as follows:

– Click the Search Bar, besides the Windows button. Then click the Apps button and locate the Snipping Tool, in the oncoming list.


Snipping Tool

– Type in, ‘Snipping Tool’ in the Windows Search Bar. The tool will show up, even before you finish typing it.

type in snipping tool

– Use the key combination, Windows + R, to open the Run. Type ‘snippingtool’ (without spaces) in the text box and hit enter, to open the tool.

open snipping tool by typing in Run

2. Capturing Screenshots with Snipping Tool

With the Snipping Tool, you can basically drag around the screen, and capture a screenshot of that region alone. For this, you need to click the “New” option, on the tool.

On selecting this option, your screen dims, for you to drag and select the area.

Capturing screenshots with snipping tools

3. Choosing between the Snipping Types

The Snipping Tool offers four types of snips. Each enables capturing screenshots in specific methods, such as Free-form, Rectangular, Full-screen, and Window.

Click the ‘down arrow’ beside the “Mode” option in the tool’s Window, to choose between the snipping types.

Snipping tool - types

4. Editing the Screenshots

Once you capture a screenshot, the Snipping Tool shows the image, where you can see the editing options, before saving.

It offers a Pen tool, Highlighter, Eraser, etc. to edit the screenshot. You can also add stickers to your image, by clicking on the sticker icon.

After finishing your edits, you can hit Menu icon to save your work.

Edit the screenshots


As you can see, there are many ways to capture screenshots in Windows. You can use the mentioned techniques and inbuilt tools very well unless you have convoluted needs. If so, you can use any third-party programs. It takes a bit effort to get the same result as that of a third-party program.


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