How To Screenshot on Windows

Taking screenshots on Windows operating system is a handy and versatile way to capture moments, share information, or troubleshoot issues. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned user, this guide will walk you through several methods to capture screenshots on your Windows device.

Method 1: Using the Print Screen (PrtScn) button

The Print Screen (PrtScn) button is a venerable tool that has been part of Windows since its early iterations. By pressing this key, you can capture the entire screen and save it to the clipboard. Follow these steps to take a screenshot using the Print Screen button:

  1. Locate the PrtScn button on your keyboard. It is typically found in the top row, near the function keys.
  2. Press the PrtScn button.
  3. Open an image editor or a document where you want to paste the screenshot.
  4. Press Ctrl + V to paste the screenshot.

Method 2: Capturing an active window

If you prefer to capture a specific window rather than the entire screen, this method is for you. It allows you to isolate the window and exclude any unnecessary background clutter. Here’s how to capture an active window:

  1. Open the window you want to screenshot.
  2. Ensure that window is active by clicking on it.
  3. Press Alt + PrtScn to capture a screenshot of the active window.
  4. Open an image editor or a document where you want to paste the screenshot.
  5. Press Ctrl + V to paste the screenshot.

Method 3: Utilizing the Snipping Tool

Windows also offers a built-in tool called the Snipping Tool, which provides more flexibility and advanced options for capturing screenshots. With this tool, you can capture a specific section, a whole window, or even a free-form area. To use the Snipping Tool, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Start menu and search for “Snipping Tool.”
  2. Click on the Snipping Tool app to launch it.
  3. In the Snipping Tool, click on “New” to start a new screenshot.
  4. Select the desired snipping type from the available options: Free-form, Rectangular, Window, or Full-screen.
  5. Use your mouse or touchpad to capture the desired area.
  6. An editing window will open where you can annotate or highlight the captured screenshot.
  7. Save the screenshot to your preferred location by clicking on the “Save” button.

Additional options in the Snipping Tool

The Snipping Tool provides additional features to enhance your screenshots. These options include:

  • Delayed snip: Allows you to set a time delay before capturing the screenshot, which is helpful when you need to capture dropdown menus or other time-sensitive content.
  • Pen and highlighter tools: Enables you to annotate or emphasize specific areas on the screenshot using different colors and thicknesses.
  • Email or copy options: Provides convenient options to send or copy the screenshot directly from the Snipping Tool.

Method 4: Using the Windows Key + Shift + S shortcut

For Windows 10 users, there is a shortcut that allows you to capture screenshots quickly and precisely. By using the Windows Key + Shift + S combination, you can launch the Snip & Sketch tool, which allows you to capture, annotate, and save screenshots. Follow these steps to utilize this shortcut:

  1. Ensure that the content you want to capture is visible on your screen.
  2. Press the Windows Key + Shift + S to activate the Snip & Sketch tool.
  3. Drag your cursor to select the desired area on the screen.
  4. The captured screenshot will be automatically copied to your clipboard.
  5. Open an image editor or a document where you want to paste the screenshot.
  6. Press Ctrl + V to paste the screenshot.

Additional features in the Snip & Sketch tool

The Snip & Sketch tool offers additional features beyond basic screenshot functionality, making it a versatile choice for Windows 10 users. These features include:

  • Pen and highlighter tools: Allows you to draw or annotate on the screenshot using different colors and brush sizes.
  • Touch writing: Enables you to write on the screenshot using your touch screen or stylus.
  • Ruler and protractor: Provides tools for measuring distances and angles on the captured screenshot.
  • Saving and sharing options: Allows you to save the screenshot to your preferred location or share it directly via email or social media platforms.


Taking screenshots on Windows is an essential skill that can greatly enhance your productivity, communication, and troubleshooting capabilities. Whether you opt for the traditional Print Screen button, utilize the Snipping Tool’s versatility, or take advantage of the convenient shortcuts in Windows 10, capturing and sharing screenshots has never been easier. Experiment with each method to find the one that best suits your needs and start screenshotting like a pro. Happy capturing!

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