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7 ways you can take screenshots in Windows 10



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What is the best way to capture that Windows 10 screen? We’ll show you.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Taking a screenshot is a quick and easy way to capture part or all of your screen, from an image you want to comment on and share to an online receipt that you want to cut and save. In Windows 10 ($ 158 on Amazon), there are a couple of built-in tools – Snip & Sketch and Snipping Tool – as well as a number of keyboard shortcuts to capture screenshots.

Microsoft introduced the Snip & Sketch tool to take screenshots in Windows 10 a few years ago, but recently made a change to the app that has finally made me embrace it and say goodbye to the proven cutting tool. (No hard feelings, Snippverktyg. We drove well together.)

I cover both the built-in Windows screenshot tools so you can choose for yourself – along with some other shortcuts for taking screenshots with Windows 10.

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Snip & Sketch

The Snip & Sketch tool is easier to access, share and comment on screenshots than the old cutting tool. And it can now capture a screenshot of a window on the desktop, a surprising omission when the app was first introduced that kept me on Team Snipping Tool until recently.

The easiest way to call Snip & Sketch is with the shortcut Windows key + Shift + S. You can also find the Snip & Sketch tool listed in the alphabetical list of apps that you open via the Start button and in the notification panel where it is listed as Screenshots. Or you can just search for it if you do not use the keyboard shortcut to memory. (If you are a regular screensaver, I recommend that you pin the app to the taskbar.)

cut and sketch

The built-in Snip & Sketch app has finally won me over and is now my go-to method for taking screenshots in Windows 10. So far, Snip Tools.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott / CNET

Either the keyboard shortcut or the message key mutes the screen and opens a small menu at the top of the screen that allows you to choose the type of screenshot you want to take – rectangular, freeform, window or full screen. Once you have taken your screenshot, it is saved on the Clipboard and is temporarily displayed as a message in the lower right corner of the screen. Click on the notification to open the screenshot in the Snip & Sketch app to comment, save or share it. (If you are missing the message, open the message panel and you will see it sitting there.

If you open Snip & Sketch from the Start menu or by searching for it, the Snip & Sketch window opens instead of the small panel at the top of the screen. From here you have to click New button at the top left to launch a screenshot and open the small panel. It’s an extra step to continue in this way, but it also allows you to delay a screenshot. Click the down arrow next to the New button to delay a clip for 3 or 10 seconds.

Screenshot tool

The cutting tool has been around since Windows Vista. Windows has been warning for a couple of years that the Snipp tool is moving away, but it’s still kicking. The cutting tool has been removed from the list of apps from the Start menu, but it is easily accessible via the search bar.

click New to start the screenshot process. The standard clip type is a rectangular clip, but you can also take freeform, full screen and window clips.

The editing tool does not automatically save your screenshots – you have to save them manually in the tool before you go out – and your images are automatically copied to the clipboard.

Screenshot tool

Screenshot by Matt Elliott / CNET

Screenshot

To capture the entire screen, press Screenshot (sometimes marked PrtScn) keys. Your screenshot is not saved as a file, but it is copied to the Clipboard. You need to open an image editing tool (for example Microsoft Paint), paste the screenshot into the editor and save the file from there.

You can also set the PrtScn button to open the Snip & Sketch tool by going to Settings> Easy access> Keyboard and switch on Use the PrtScn button to open screenshots below the print screen shortcut.

pnt-scn shortcut

Screenshot by Matt Elliott / CNET

Windows key + print screen

To capture the entire screen and automatically save the screenshot, press Windows key + Print screen button. Your screen becomes brief to indicate that you have just taken a screenshot and the screenshot is saved in the Pictures> Screenshots folder.

Alt + print screen

To take a quick screenshot of the active window, use the keyboard shortcut Alt + PrtScn. This will snap your currently active window and copy the screenshot to the Clipboard. You need to open the image in an image editor to save it.

Playing field

You can use the playing field to take a screenshot, whether you are playing a game or not. Beat Windows key + G key to dial the playing field. From here, you can click the screenshot button in the playing field or use the default keyboard shortcut Windows key + Alt + PrtScn to take a screenshot in full screen. To set your own keyboard shortcut bar shortcut to Settings> Games> Game fields. Back up a bit, you also need to activate the playing field from this settings page by making sure you have activated Record game clips, screenshots and send using the game field.

Windows logo + volume down

If you swing one Microsoft Surface device, you can use the physical (yes, type of physical) buttons to take a screenshot of the entire screen – similar to how you would take a screenshot on another phone or tablet. To do this, hold down the Windows logo touch button at the bottom of your Surface screen and press the physical volume down button on the side of the tablet. The screen will dim briefly and the screenshot will be automatically saved in the Images> Screenshots folder.

Read more: 20 tips to make Windows 10 work the way you want (free PDF) (TechRepublic)






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Originally published on December 20, 2016.
Update April 3, 2019: Added detail of the Game Bar screen tool.


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