26 September 2015

Fancy Print Screen TricksYou may have read my earlier post, Capture Part of your Screen in Windows: Behold the Snipping Tool!. The Snipping Tool in Windows is very handy.

But, sometimes you just want a quick and easy way to grab a screenshot.

As I mentioned in my previous post, you can just press the PrtScn (print screen) button on your keyboard, and that will copy your entire screen (or all of your screens in a multi-monitor arrangement) onto your clipboard. Paste into your graphics editing program, and you’re done.

That’s nice, but there are two other keyboard shortcuts in Windows that make things even easier…

Grab a screenshot of only the selected window

This one is cool.

  1. Select the window you want to take a snapshot of, like say your web browser
  2. Hold down the Alt key
  3. Then press the PrtScn key.

Then paste into your graphics program. Ta-da! Instead of your whole desktop, you’ve got a “window grab”.

This technique is very handy when you just want to capture what you see in only 1 open program or window. Note that in Windows 10, the built-in Snipping Tool has been enhanced to allow you to do the same thing, but with a nice graphical interface.

Grab a screenshot of your whole desktop and save it automatically to your puter

This one is very cool – but it only works in Win 8 or above.

  1. Hold down the Win (Windows) key on your keyboard
  2. Then press the PrtScn key

This is exactly the same as the plain old PrtScn trick in that it will take a screenshot of whatever you see on your screen (or screens) in one giant image.

BUT, it also automatically saves the screenshot as a PNG file in your Pictures folder – in a new subfolder called Screenshots.

Pretty handy, eh?

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Screenshots in Windows, the easy way
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7 thoughts on “Screenshots in Windows, the easy way

  • 26 September 2015 at 18:43

    The last version –

    This one is very cool.
    1.Hold down the Win (Windows) key on your keyboard
    2.Then press the PrtScn key

    Does not work with dual monitors under WIn 7 Pro x64.

    • 26 September 2015 at 19:29

      I just tried it on a Win 7 x64 machine with 2 screens, and it worked. Maybe it’s something to do with your specific dual-monitor config, graphics driver, etc?

  • 27 September 2015 at 15:47

    I have tried the last version –

    This one is very cool.
    1.Hold down the Win (Windows) key on your keyboard
    2.Then press the PrtScn key.

    I don’t find the png file. I have done a research for png files on my computer but no result for the file of the day. So I am not sure if it is working. Windows 7 and just 1 monitor.

    However the Alt… is working fine.


    • 27 September 2015 at 16:29

      Hmm, I just tested in in Win 7, and I don’t find the Screenshots folder either. Maybe it only works in Win 8 and above?

      ADDED: Just dug around a bit more, and nope, it doesn’t work in Win 7. 🙁

  • 27 September 2015 at 16:54


    Too bad.. snif, snif. It would have been quite useful.

  • 27 September 2015 at 18:09

    At least the Snipping tools works quite well. Wish it had the capability of saving as a .PDF file.

  • 20 December 2016 at 20:56

    Yes, snipping tool works great and it was about time for windows to remember making a software for this option. I myself prefer using PaintShop Pro for my screenshots, since this is a option I use a million times a day, and because it is very simple to take a screenshot but you still get a high quality picture… You can check it out here and give it a try if you wish http://www.paintshoppro.com/en/pages/screenshots/


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