How to take a screenshot in Windows

A screenshot can be useful if you want to post a Windows error on a forum or come across something nice on the web. Taking a Windows screenshot is easier than you think. Here are three tips to get you started.

Take a screenshot in Windows?

  • Option 1: Press the PrintScreenkey, Open paint and click Ctrl + V. Usage Alt + Print Screen when you want to capture only the active window.
  • Option 2: use it Snipping Tool, select what you want to capture and save it via File, Save.
  • Option 3: Use a browser extension.

Below you can read in detail what options you have when you want to take a screenshot in Windows.

PrintScreen key

The PrintScreen key trick works in all Windows versions. After pressing this key, it seems as if nothing happens. In the background, however, Windows takes a picture of your entire display. This is temporarily stored in the clipboard that is also used for copying and pasting text. Start Paint now via Start / (all) Programs / Accessories – another image editor also works. In Windows 10, open the Start menu with the Windows key and type paint (note: Paint 3D is a different program and is not useful for screenshots). You paste the screenshot with the key combination Ctrl + V in Paint after which you can save the image in the usual way. The jpg and png file formats are the most common. Good to know: with the key combination Alt + Print Screen take a screenshot of the active window instead of your entire screen.

Windows 7 and 10

From Windows Vista, you no longer have to do antics with Paint to save a screenshot. The magic word is Snipping Tool. type snipping tool in the Start menu and press Enter.

When Snipping Tool is started, the screen becomes blurred and the mouse pointer changes to a highlighting tool. This allows you to select a part of your screen for the screenshot. Then the screenshot will appear in Snipping Tool. Save the image as a jpg or png file via Save file if. Use the button New if you want to take another screenshot. Be sure to save your screenshot before making a new one!

Other useful functions of the screenshot tool are the pen and highlighter. This allows you to quickly highlight an important piece of text or draw a circle around something you want to emphasize.

Browser screenshots

If you've experimented with the tips above, you may have noticed that you only capture the visible portion of your screen. This is inconvenient when you want to take a screenshot of a web page that does not fit on the screen.

Extensions such as FireShot (Chrome/Firefox) offer a solution. You can choose from three methods of capturing: the whole page, only the visible part or a selection. Furthermore, FireShot offers quite extensive options. You can also save the screenshot as a PDF or send it directly via Gmail.

FireShot is also available as an installer for Internet Explorer and Opera, among others.

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