Taking screenshots is quite simple on practically every platform. On Windows, everyone knows that it’s as simple as pressing the Prt Sc (print screen) key on the keyboard, which captures the whole screen for you. Capturing the full screen and pasting it in MS Paint seems like an overly cumbersome way to take screenshots. That led to some quick searches through help and guess what, there are much better ways to take screenshots on Windows. Note that these methods will work in Windows XP or newer versions of the OS, except the Snipping Tool, which was only introduced in Windows Vista.
How to Take a Screenshot on Windows in Different Ways
How to save a screenshot of the entire screen directly to file in Windows:
- Press Windows key + Print Screen. This will save a screenshot in the Pictures library on your computer.
- To find the screenshot, launch Explorer and in the left pane click Pictures. Open the Screenshots folder here to find your screenshot saved.
Saving a screenshot to the clipboard:
- Press Print Screen which copies the screen to the clipboard.
- Now, open MS Paint, Word or any other app that can deal with images.
- Press Ctrl + v to paste the screenshot in the app.
- You can now save this file anywhere you like.
Taking a screenshot of the open window:
- Click on the app you want to take a screenshot. Make sure it’s in the foreground and not behind other open apps.
- Press alt + Print Screen.
- Open MS Paint or any application of your choice.
- Press ctrl + v.
- This will paste the screenshot of the open window in Paint.
- You can save the screenshot anywhere you like.
Taking a screenshot of a part of the screen:
- Open Snipping Tool. It’s under Start menu > All programs > Accessories. You can also open the Start menu and simply use the search box to find it.
- Now click the down arrow next to New.
- Select Rectangular Snip or Free-form Snip. The former lets you capture a rectangular screenshot and the latter lets you draw any shape on screen and takes a screenshot of that part.
- Once you’ve done that, you can use the Snipping tool to annotate the screenshot if needed and save it to your PC.