(Pocket-lint) - If you're looking to capture your screen or part of it when using Windows, then you'll be pleased to hear there are plenty of easy ways to do that.
Follow us on a journey that'll teach you easy and magnificent ways to capture screenshots that you'll love. These will make your life easier and help you share screenshots without fuss in double-quick time.
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Print Screen - the standard screenshot
Print Screen is the most basic way to capture your screen. You'll often see it labelled as PrtScn or PrtSc on your keyboard.
Pressing this button captures a snapshot of your entire screen and copies it to your clipboard so you can paste it elsewhere.
This is likely one of the quickest and easiest ways to take a screenshot. It also requires a bit more effort though, as you'll need to paste it into something like Microsoft Paint in order to edit and crop it into something useful.
It's worth noting that on some laptops you might find the PrtScn button buried in the function keys. If that's the case, you may need to press FN + PrtScn together in order to capture the screen. That logic also applies to the other methods outlined below that include that button as well.
Windows Key + Print Screen - screenshot and save
While the Print Screen button only copies the image of your screen to your clipboard, it is possible to use a keyboard shortcut to save your entire screen instead.
Pressing the Windows Key and Print Screen button at the same time captures your entire screen and saves it as a PNG file. You can then find that screenshot via your Windows explorer, by going to the Pictures folder on your PC and looking for a folder called Screenshots.
Alt + Print Screen - screenshot specific windows
To make your screenshot more specific, you can press the Alt and Print Screen buttons together at the same time. This will then only capture the window you're currently using.
Like the standard Print Screen function, this only captures and copies it to your clipboard, but it does mean it only gets the window you're using and not everything else on your screen too. This should make editing and sharing easier.
Snip & Sketch tool - the easiest screenshot method
The easiest and most satisfying way to take screenshots in Windows is with the Snip & Sketch tool.
This is a free app that's included with Windows as standard. You can find it by clicking the Windows key and searching for it on your machine.
If you can't find it for some reason, you can download it for free from the Microsoft Store here.
Snip & Sketch replaces the older Snipping Tool from older versions of Windows. That tool is being fazed out and replaced by the more feature-rich Snip & Sketch.
Using Snip & Sketch to capture a screenshot in Windows is easy. Open the app and click and the new button. You will then find you can drag your cursor and highlight an area to capture.
Once you've done that, the tool will open back up with the screenshot inside. You can then sketch, draw, annotate, highlight and even crop within the app until you're happy with the screenshot and are ready to share it.
Then in the top right of the app, you'll see you can either save the screenshot as a file, copy it to your clipboard or click to share it via Skype, mail or OneNote.
Make Snip & Sketch default for screenshots
You'll soon see that Snip & Sketch is incredibly useful and the simplest way to take screenshots in Windows.
The good news is you can set Snip & Sketch as your default tool for screenshots and activate it with one button.
Click the Windows key on your machine and type "Ease of access keyboard settings". From that menu, you should then see this option:
"Use the PrtScn button to open screen snipping" - click this and that changes your keyboard setup so the PrtScn button automatically starts the snipping process with Snip & Sketch.
Standard keyboard shortcuts
Another option is to use a keyboard shortcut to start the Snip & Sketch tool. Press Windows key + shift + s and you'll see the screen dim and the Snip & Sketch menu appear.
The app itself won't open first this way, instead you immediately get access to start capturing and sketching. Then copy or save your screenshot as normal.