Have you ever wondered how you can take a snap of your screen, whether whole or just a part of it, so that you can paste it in your report or presentation? Windows 10 operating system comes with ingenious and numerous ways which you can accomplish this. You can capture the screen using in-built shortcuts or get free/premium third party software. Screenshots eliminate the inconvenience of dragging your camera or your smartphone around to take snap shots which, in most cases, turn out either too bright, grainy or too dull. In this post, we take a look at various ways to take crisp and perfect screenshots on Windows 10.
Capturing Entire Window Using Print Screen (PrtSc) Key
Windows in general has a provision for capturing the entire screen using the Print Screen button. This key is usually labeled as PrtSc or Print Screen on the keyboard. It is usually found on the first row along with function keys next to F12 key or delete key in laptops. Sometimes this key is also combined with SysRq function as shown below.
Depending on your PC’s make, pressing PrtSc key alone or with a combination of keys such as Fn or Ctrl or Alt will capture the entire screen. If you have OneDrive installed, simply press the PrtSc key and the screenshot will automatically be saved in the ‘screenshots’ folder. You can find the screenshots folder under the path – C:\Users\username\OneDrive\Pictures\Screenshots.
In most cases pressing PrtSc key will copy the image to the clipboard. You can also try Ctrl + PrtSc key combinations for taking screenshots. Once captured the screenshot, open a blank Word document and press Ctrl + V to paste the screenshot. Otherwise just right click inside the document and select the ‘Paste’ option.
Choosing Active Windows from Multiple Windows
There are situations you have multiple windows open and you want to take a screenshot of a single window. Click on the title bar of the window you wish to capture and press Alt + PrtSc keys. This will copy the screenshot image of the highlighted window to the clipboard. Using the Ctrl + V shortcut, the image can be pasted in a document.
Capturing Part of Window with Snipping Tool
The snipping tool feature is a Windows built-in feature that allows users to capture part of the screen. It comes in handy when one wants to narrow down to a specific part of the screen. To launch it, type ‘snipping tool’ in the Windows Search box field located on the taskbar.
Click on the “Snipping Tool” Desktop app option to open the tool. To capture part of the screen, click on the ‘New’ icon as shown below.
The cursor will change to a crosshair mode allowing you to select the section of any screen. Click and drag the cursor on the area you wish to capture. You’ll be presented with many options. To save the snapshot, click on the ‘Save’ icon and chose the name and preferred destination folder. The snipping tool also provides the option of choosing which window to capture, as well as capturing the entire screen. To access these options, click on the down arrow adjacent to ‘Mode’ option. A pull down menu will be displayed revealing four options:
- Free form option allows you to draw or capture a free form shape of the screen.
- Rectangular snip takes a rectangular shape of part of the screen.
- Window snip takes the snip of the selected Window.
- Full screen snip captures the entire screen.
Screenshot shortcuts and tools have been there since Windows 7 right up to Windows 10. If you are on Microsoft Surface device, Press the “Windows Key + Volume Down” to capture a screenshot. Also you can try “Windows Key + Shift + S” and select rectangular portions for taking partial screenshots.
Other Free and Premium Screen Capture Tools
Other free tools you can use to take screenshots include:
Paid tools include:
- Snagit – Comes with a fourteen day trial and goes up to $49.95 depending of the version
- Ashampoo snap starting from $15.99
Tools like Snagit offers end to end screen capture functions like video capturing, converting video to GIF image, making transparent background PNG images. You need to have premium software like Snagit or Photoshop for processing the screenshots taken in Windows 10 with PrtSc key.