How to Take a Screenshot on a Mac

Screenshots are a handy tool. You can use them to walk someone through a new app, capture important messages, and snap stressful photos of your best friend skyping. Unfortunately, Apple desktops and laptops don’t have a simple touch screen button.

However, they do have a few keyboard shortcuts and apps that can help you get the recording you need. These commands are quick and easy to learn.

How to Take a Screenshot on a Mac
How to Take a Screenshot on a Mac

Use keyboard shortcuts

MacOS keyboard shortcuts are the easiest and fastest way to take screenshots, whether you’re capturing the entire screen or just part of it. By default, Apple’s methods save your screenshot to the desktop. However, if you want to copy the screenshot to the clipboard, you can use a keyboard shortcut instead.

Capture the entire screen

Method 1: Press the command + shift + 3 Buttons at the same time for an instant capture of your desktop.

Method 2: Press the command + shift + 3 + control Keys at the same time to save the image to your clipboard.

In macOS Catalina and above, a screenshot preview will appear in the lower right corner of your screen for quick access to the editing tools.

Capture a selected area

Method 1: Press the command + shift + 4th Buttons simultaneously. When your pointer is transformed into crosshairs, click and drag to draw a box around the region you want to capture. When you release the mouse button, the screenshot will be saved on your desktop.

Method 2: Press the command + shift + 4 + control Buttons simultaneously. When your pointer is transformed into crosshairs, click and drag to draw a box around the region you want to capture. When you release the mouse button, the screenshot is saved to the clipboard.

Capture a single window

How to take a screenshot on Mac

Step 1: Press the command + shift + 4th Keys at the same time so that your pointer becomes a crosshair.

Step 2: Press the Space bar. The pointer changes to a camera symbol.

Step 3: Any window that you hover over with your mouse pointer is highlighted with a light blue overlay. Click on the window you want to capture and the picture will be saved to your desktop.

Not only does this method capture windows, but you can save the desktop, menu bar, dock, or even an open menu yourself.

The image you saved consists of the window and its shadow against a transparent background (PNG). If you don’t want the shadow, press and hold possibility Key (or Old) while you click to save the image.

Method 2: In step 1, press the button command + shift + 4 + control Keys at the same time to save the image to your clipboard.

Use the screenshot app

MacOS Screenshots App

MacOS Mojave and above includes a screenshot app. It offers three capture tools, plus options to save, view the pointer, and more. You can access this app by opening the Other Folder on the launchpad, but easier to use keyboard shortcuts.

Method 1: Press the command + shift + 5 Simultaneously press the buttons to load the Screenshots toolbar and select your target capture – Entire Screen, Selected Window, or Selected Part. By default, the resulting image is saved on the desktop.

Method 2: Press the command + shift + 5 + Control Simultaneously press the buttons to load the Screenshots toolbar and select your target capture – Entire Screen, Selected Window, or Selected Part. The resulting image is saved to the clipboard.

Note that if you have a MacBook Pro with a Touch Bar, these options will appear on the OLED strip. Another exclusive Touch Bar takes a screenshot of the Touch Bar display, which can be taken by pressing Shift + Command + 6.

Finally, you can use the Screenshot app to change the default location of your screenshots. click Options on the toolbar and select Desktop, documents, Mail, Messages, QuickTime Player, or Another place. Select this last option to have your grabs sent to a specific location, e.g. B. a special screenshot folder that you can click to create New folder.

Take screenshots with Grab

You don’t want to memorize keyboard shortcuts? Grab allows you to take screenshots directly from the menu bar. The app also lets you take time-delayed screenshots just in case you need to set the stage before taking a picture on your display.

If you’re using macOS Catalina or higher, Grab is not included. Instead, its functions are now in the command + shift + 5 Keyboard shortcut.

Grab options

Step 1: to open finder and select Applications listed on the left.

Step 2: Double click Utilities Folder and select To grab.

As soon as you start Grab, an icon for the app will appear on the dock. You can also pin this icon for quick access later. Grab seldom has a window open and instead runs almost entirely from the menu bar.

Step 3: Use either the Capture Menu system for taking screenshots or using the keyboard shortcuts next to the respective command.

Timed screenshots

Grab lets you capture a specific section of the screen, a single window, or the entire screen – the same three options discussed above. It also has one Timed screen Option that gives you a 10 second delay before taking the screenshot.

This means that if you need to open a menu or place the pointer in the correct location, you will have time.

Grab Mac Settings

Step 1: Follow the previous instructions to open grave.

Step 2: Choose Timed screen from the grab menu or press the shortcut: command + shift + Z..

Note that by default your pointer does not appear in the screenshot. If you want to make sure it’s captured in the frame, click Settings From the main Grab menu, select the pointer icon from the pop-up that appears.

The pointer will only appear when taking delayed screenshots. Keyboard shortcuts are a better way to take screenshots. However, if you don’t want to remember anything, Grab is a great alternative.

Use the preview to take a screenshot

Preview is the standard tool that lets you open everything from photos to PDF files (and how to convert them). It has more than a few lesser-known features, such as: B. Editing of images by clicking on the Toolbox icon. The preview also captures screenshots!

Preview recording screenshot

Step 1: to open finder and select Applications listed on the left.

Step 2: Double click preview to open the app.

Step 3: Once the app is open, click file is located in the menu bar.

Step 4: Hover your mouse over it from the drop-down menu Take a screenshot and select From selection, From the window, or From the entire screen, depending on your preferences.

The keyboard shortcut method is much faster, but the preview has one major benefit: you can choose where to save screenshots. The other options in our list will automatically save your screenshot with a detailed file name on the desktop. Preview opens the screenshot, lets you make some changes, and then can save the file wherever you want. If that’s important to you, previewing is a great choice.

Take and save Mac screenshots

What if you take a screenshot? For example, suppose you not only sent it to the clipboard, your Mac will automatically stamp it with the date and time before saving it to your desktop as a PNG file. This is handy for instant access, but your desktop can quickly become a mess if you take multiple screenshots with strange names in a row.

MacOS use stacks

If you are running MacOS Mojave or higher, new organization and quick edit tools are available. Screenshots saved on the desktop are collected in the corner, for example, and distributed over the display. You can quickly group them with Stacks – just right click on the desktop and choose Use batch – to suppress interference in your viewing area. You can even click on these images for quick editing using markup tools.

If you’re running older versions of macOS, you can always drag the screenshots to the trash, make changes using terminal commands, or use third-party macOS apps.

We talk about some of our favorites in our guide to the best macOS apps. Take the TinyTake for Mac app, for example, which gives you far greater control over your screenshots and how they are captured.

Change screenshot attributes

If you are familiar with the terminal, there are commands to change the file format, change the default name, and remove the timestamp of a screenshot. Remember to press Enter according to these commands.

Change the file type

By default, write com.apple.screencapture type JPG

The default is PNG, while this example uses JPG. Other options are TIFF, GIF and PDF. Make sure there is a space between “Type” and the format you want.

Change the default name

By default com.apple.screencapture name write “NAME”; killall SystemUIServer

Replace NAME with whatever you want to use.

Remove the timestamp

Default values ​​write com.apple.screencapture “include-date” 0; killall SystemUIServer

Replace the 0 with a 1 to reset timestamps.

Remove drop shadow

Default values ​​write com.apple.screencapture disable-shadow -bool true; killall SystemUIServer

To bring back shadows, change “true” to “false”. However, this command is not required because you can turn off drop shadows by holding down the key possibility Key (or Old) every time you save a screenshot.

Each of these commands might require a reboot to take effect.

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