In this guide, you will learn how to take a screenshot on a Windows 10 PC. The ability to take a screenshot (screengrab or screen capture) of your desktop or application window opens many doors for easier sharing: from posting images or different parts of article text on social media to sending messages to tech support to display an issue you are experiencing.
However, Windows 10 provides a number of ways to take a screenshot of your entire computer screen, or just pick parts of it. Luckily, there is no need to download and install third-party software. The fastest and easiest way to take a screenshot on Windows 10 PC is using the Print screen, PrtScn or prt sc button on your keyboard.
Meanwhile, Microsoft also offers the Snipping Tool to take custom screenshots and draw on it. Last but not the least, you can also use the game bar option as well to take screenshots within games.
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How to Take a Screenshot on Windows 10
In this guide, I will show you three (3) different methods to take screenshots on Windows 10 by using the Print Screen key, Snipping tool and Game bar feature.
Method 1. How to Take a Screenshot on Windows 10 with the Print Screen Key
The Print Screen button may be labeled as “PrtScn,” “PrntScrn,” “Print Scr,” or even “Prtsc“. The Print Screen button is usually found on most keyboards near F12 and the Scroll Lock. The Print Screen button on your keyboard can take a screenshot and save it as a file, take a screenshot without saving it as a file, or take a screenshot of just one window.
1. Windows key + Print Screen
Press the Windows key + Print Screen key to capture your entire screen and save the screenshot automatically. Your screen will be dimmed briefly to indicate you have just taken a screenshot, and the screenshot will be saved to the Pictures > Screenshots folder.
2. Print Screen, PrtScn or Prt Sc
Press the Print Screen key to capture your entire screen. However, Your screenshot will not be saved as a file but will be copied to the clipboard. You will need to open an image editing tool such as Microsoft Paint 3D or Microsoft Word paste a screenshot in the editor and save the file from it.
3. Windows Key + Shift + S
Press Windows key + Shift + S then your screen will be grayed out and your mouse cursor will be changed. To select the part of your screen you want to capture, click and drag on your screen. Your screenshot will not be saved as a file but will be copied to the clipboard. You will need to open an image editing tool such as Microsoft Paint 3D or Microsoft Word paste a screenshot in the editor and save the file from it.
4. Alt + Print Screen
Press the Alt + PrtScn keyboard shortcut to take a quick screenshot of the active window. This will snap your currently active window and copy the screenshot to your clipboard. You’re going to need to open a shot in an image editor to save it.
Method 2. How to take a screenshot on Windows 10 with Snipping Tool
The best alternative native method is the Snipping Tool. This built-in screen-capture utility works well enough, but when it comes to saving a snapshot it is not the most robust or versatile. However, it is a tool that allows users to better define and capture portions of their desktop display as a screenshot. Windows 7, 8.1, and 10 come with the Snipping Tool.
Here’s how to use the Snipping Tool:
Step 1. Click the Start button then search for the Snipping tool and open the tool.
Step 2. In the Mode drop-down, choose the kind of screenshot shape you want.
Note: You’ll find four screen-capturing options: Free-Form Snip, Rectangular Snip, Windows Snip, and capture the Full-Screen Snip.
Step 3. Click New and your screen will freeze. You can then use the mouse to create the screenshot.
Step 4. Once you capture a screenshot, the Snipping Tool interface expands to display your screenshot. You can perform light edits, such as using a pen, highlighter, and eraser. You can also click the colorful Paint 3D button to make additional edits in the newer application.
Step 5. When you have finished editing in the Snipping Tool, click File in the upper left corner, and then click Save As in the drop-down menu.
Method 3. How to take a screenshot on Windows 10 with the Game Bar
The last method to take a screenshot on Windows 10 while Play games. The Game Bar is an overlay you can use within most Windows games to take screenshots and record video.
Here’s how to use the game bar:
Note: Before you start using the Game Bar, launch the Xbox app that came with Windows 10 open its settings. Under “Game DVR”, toggle “Take screenshots using Game DVR,” and assign whatever keyboard shortcuts you want.
Step 1. Start or launch the game from the Start menu or Xbox Console Companion.
Step 2. Press the Windows key + G key to call up the Game bar.
Step 3. Click the camera icon to take a screenshot, or you can use the keyboard shortcut: Windows key + Alt + PrtScn.
The screenshot will be automatically saved to the “Videos” folder in a subfolder called “Captures.”
This is how you can take a screenshot on Windows 10 by using the Windows’ built-in features ( Print screen, Snipping tool, and the Xbox Game bar). There’s no need to look for any additional software for taking screenshots.
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