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There are several ways to take screenshots on a Windows computer, from pressing the “PrtScn” button on your keyboard to using Microsoft’s Snipping Tool. You can also screenshots on Windows 10 by opening the Game Bar using the Windows + G keyboard shortcut.
Windows 10 provides a variety of quick and easy ways to capture part of or the whole of your computer screen. We’ve rounded up all the methods and keyboard shortcuts for taking screenshots on Windows 10.
The screenshot methods in this article will apply to most Windows 10 laptops and desktop computer brands — including Toshiba, Hewlett Packard (HP)/Compaq, Dell, Lenovo, Samsung, ASUS, Acer, LG, and Microsoft.
How to take a screenshot on Windows 10 using the PrtScn key
The easiest way to capture your computer screen is to tap the Print Screen, sometimes labeled “PrtScn.” It’s on the first row, top of the Functions keys.
Windows has several PrtScn modifiers that can change how it all works:
PrtScn: This method will not save your screenshot as a file, but it will copy the entire screen to the clipboard – you can then paste it elsewhere (such as an image editing tool like Microsoft Word or Paint) and save it as a file.
Alt + PrtScn: This will capture the currently active window and copy the screenshot to the clipboard, which you can paste elsewhere in another program (such as Microsoft Word or Paint) and save it as a file.
Windows key + PrtScn: This will capture the entire screen and automatically save the screenshot as an image file. The screen will momentarily dim to signal that you’ve taken a screenshot. It will be saved in the Pictures > Screenshots folder.
Windows key + Shift + S: Your screen will dim and your mouse cursor will change. Drag to select the part of the screen you want to capture. Your screenshot will be copied to the clipboard. Note that this method only works on the latest version of Windows, called Windows 10 Creators Update.
How to take a screenshot on Windows 10 using the Snipping Tool
The Snipping Tool is a much more flexible screenshot feature in Windows 10, which you can use to capture your screen and save it as an image file. If you can’t find the Snipping Tool from the list of apps on the start menu, you can easily access it through the search bar.
1. Start the Snipping Tool from the Start menu. If it’s not on the start menu, click and type snipping tool in the search bar at the bottom left of your screen and click on the Snipping Tool from the search result to open it.
2. In the Mode drop-down, choose the kind of screenshot you want – the default shape is a rectangular snip, but you can also choose from full-screen snip, Window snip, or free-form snip.
3. Click New, and your screen will freeze. You can then create the screenshot using your mouse. The screenshot will then appear in the Snipping Tool window. The Snipping Tool will not automatically save your screenshot – you will need to save it manually in the Snipping Tool window.
4. To save the screenshot to your computer, click File > Save As.
How to take a screenshot on Windows 10 using the Game Bar
You can use the Game Bar to take screenshots and record video when playing games.
1. Start a game from the Start menu.
2. While playing the game, hit the Windows key + G to call up The Game Bar.
3. Click the camera icon to snap a screenshot, or you use the keyboard shortcut: Windows key + Alt + PrtScn. You can find the screenshot automatically saved in a subfolder called Captures under the Videos folder.
For Steam players, you can hit F11 to take a screenshot. You’ll find it saved in your screenshots folder on steam.
For more help getting the most out of your tech, check out our how-to guides as well as more helpful articles below.
About King Osaghae
King Osaghae is a technology researcher and writer who’s been writing about tech-related topics and trends since 2018. He is the managing editor at TechZerg, meaning that he oversees all the articles TechZerg produces.