How to Screenshot in Windows 10 [10 Ways]

Try Movavi Screen Recorder:

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Edited by Ben Jacklin
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Users need to know how to take a screenshot in Windows 10 for a wide variety of reasons – from creating product demos to quickly showing customer support what’s going on with their computer. In this article, we’ll explore the quickest and best ways to capture screenshots and recordings on a Windows 10 desktop, laptop, or tablet.

If you’re looking for a good method for how to screenshot on Windows 10, Movavi Screen Recorder is a great alternative to some of the native screen capture options included with Windows. This screen-recording program allows users to record their screen and webcam at the same time and take screenshots. Along with live drawing and annotations, Movavi Screen Recorder also allows users to take Windows 10 screenshots while recording, as well. And, if you just want to find out how to screenshot on a PC without recording, Movavi Screen Recorder can do that too.

Our goal is to provide you with only verified information. To ensure this, Movavi Content Team does the following:

  • The team tests all the products mentioned in this article.

  • When testing, we compare the key characteristics of the products, which include selecting capture area, schedule recording, showing keystrokes and mouse, and other significant features.

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How to screenshot on a PC

Now, let’s dive into the top 10 ways to screenshot on a Windows laptop, desktop, or tablet. We’ll walk you through all the steps you need to know for how to print a screen in Windows 10, use Windows screenshot shortcuts, and how to screenshot a specific area, a single window, or your whole screen. Let’s get started!

Capturing Xbox or PC gaming footage

Game Bar
Editor's choice

Capturing and editing enhanced screenshots in Windows 10

Movavi Screen Recorder

Taking free-form screenshots with a delay

Snipping Tool

Print Screen

Use the Print Screen button to capture the whole screen

Best for: capturing screenshots quickly with a single keystroke

Using the Print Screen key is a quick and easy way to grab a screenshot of your whole screen without any annotations or edits. You can use this method in just three steps:

  1. Make sure that the image or window you want to capture is visible on your screen.

  2. Tap the PrtScn button at the upper right of your keyboard.

  3. The screenshot is now saved to your clipboard. To save it, paste it into a Word document or a new project in MS Paint.

Use the Print Screen button to capture a window

Best for: capturing a specific window with a hotkey combination

You can also grab a screenshot of a specific window with the PrtScrn key by following these steps:

  1. Select the window you want for your PC screenshot.

  2. Hold Alt + PrtScn to make a screenshot of the active window you just selected.

  3. Paste the screenshot into MS Paint or MS Word.


Use the Print Screen button and automatically save a screenshot

Best for: automatically saving a screenshot as an image 

But what if you want to save a screenshot with the PrtScn button instead of sending it to the clipboard? This is as simple as knowing a two-button keyboard combination:

  1. Ensure that the section of the screen you want to capture is visible.

  2. Hold Win + PrtScn together.

  3. Instead of going to the clipboard, your screenshot will be saved to your computer.

  4. You can find screenshots saved this way by navigating to Pictures > Screenshots.

Movavi Screen Recorder

Best for: quickly capturing and editing screenshots of part or all of your screen

Using a third-party program is another option for taking screenshots on your Windows PC. Let’s talk about how to take a screenshot on Windows 10 using Movavi Screen Recorder.

Step 1. Download and install Movavi Screen Recorder

First, you’ll need to get Movavi Screen Recorder. Once you’ve downloaded the software, follow the prompts to install and launch it.

Step 2. Choose which kind of screenshot you want to create

Once you’ve opened the program, locate and click the camera icon at the right corner of the screen. Next, if you want to know how to take a screenshot on a computer of the full screen, just click on any unoccupied part of your screen. To capture part of the screen, hold the mouse button down as you drag it over the area you want for your screenshot. If your goal is to capture a specific window, hover your cursor over the window until you see a frame appear. When you see the frame, click your left mouse button to capture the window.

Step 3. Edit your screenshot

Next, you can enhance your screenshot with annotations. Just click the Editor button and choose the tool you want to use and make the changes you need before saving the image.

Step 4. Save your screenshot

When you’re done editing, click on Save or Copy to export your screenshot and use it wherever you like.

Snipping Tool

Best for: taking a screenshot of a free-form area of your screen

Snipping Tool is one of the most popular features of Windows 10. This native app gives users the ability to take multiple types of screenshots in just a few steps. 

  1. Click on Search and type “Snipping tool” into the search bar.

  2. Open Snipping Tool by selecting it from the search results (it may be the only one).

  3. In the upper-left corner of the Snipping Tool window, click on New.

  4. Click on Mode and select the type of screenshot you want to take. You can choose Free Form Snip to use your mouse to create a free-form drawing of a certain area, or you can select Rectangular Snip to drag the cursor to capture a rectangular area of the screen.

  5. Select your desktop screenshot area and release the left mouse button to take your screenshot.

  6. Save your screenshot to your preferred destination on your computer.

Taking delayed screenshots with Snipping Tool

Best for: taking screenshots with a delay on a PC

If you’re asking yourself, “But how do I take a delayed screenshot?” Snipping Tool can help. If you need to take a few seconds before you capture a specific moment in a video or before you record an action on your screen, you can use Snipping Tools delayed screenshot feature. Here’s how to screenshot on a desktop with a delay:

  1. Open Snipping Tool by either going to Start > All programs > Applications > Snipping Tool or by typing “Snipping Tool” into search.

  2. Click on New and then click on Mode to choose Free form Snip or Rectangular Snip.

  3. Before you take your Windows snapshot, go to the top of the Snipping Tool window and click on Delay. A drop-down menu will appear with options for how long you want Snipping Tool to delay before taking a screenshot.

  4. After you’ve selected your delay time, draw your screenshot area on your screen and wait for your delayed screenshot.

  5. Save your delayed screenshot to your preferred destination on your computer.

Snip & Sketch

Best for: customizing and annotating screenshots in Windows 10

Snip & Sketch is another built-in screen capture app with Windows 10. With this tool, users can take screenshots and then make edits within the app. Here are the steps to take a screenshot and then enhance it in Snip & Sketch:

  1. Go to Search and type in “Snip & Sketch” to open the Snip & Sketch application. To take a screen capture in Windows with this application, go ahead and open it from the search result.

  2. When Snip & Sketch opens, you’ll notice that your screen becomes dim, and a bar with four icons and an X will appear at the top of the screen. You can exit Snip & Sketch at any time by clicking on the X icon. The other icons represent options for different types of screenshots:

    Full screen: click on this icon to take a screenshot of your entire screen.

    Rectangular: select this icon to take a rectangular screenshot of a specific area of the screen. You’ll do this by clicking and dragging the cursor over the area you want to capture.

    Free-form: choose this icon if you want to capture a free-form area of your screen. Draw the shape of the area you want to capture with your cursor to take the screenshot.

    Window: this option allows you to capture a selected active window while excluding the rest of your screen.

  3. When you’ve selected the type of screenshot you want to take, the area you’ll be capturing will be highlighted, while the rest of your screen will remain dim. Drag your cursor over the selected area or select the window you want to capture, and Snip & Sketch will capture your screenshot.

  4. Snip & Sketch will automatically save your screenshot to the clipboard, and you can immediately paste it into Microsoft Word or MS Paint. However, if you want to save or edit your image, you can do that now.

  5. After you take a Windows snapshot with Snip & Sketch, a small preview of your capture screen image at the bottom-right corner of your screen. Click on the preview, and it will open in Snip & Sketch with tools to add annotations and drawings. When you’re done with your edits, just save your screenshot to your computer.

Game Bar

Best for: taking screenshots and videos of gameplay on an Xbox or a PC

If you’re a gamer and you want to take a quick snapshot of gameplay on your PC or Xbox, Game Bar may be the way to go. Follow these steps to take screenshots and save them with Game Bar:

  1. You can open Game Bar with a shortcut key combination. Hold Win + G. If Game Bar doesn’t open when you use this command, it may be disabled. You can enable the app by holding Win + I. The settings window will open, and from here you can navigate to Gaming > Xbox Game Bar and enable Game Bar for “recording game clips, chatting with friends, and receiving game invites.”

  2. Once you’ve opened Game Bar, go to the Overlay menu and select Capture. In the Capture menu, click on the camera icon to take a still screenshot. You can also record a video of your screen here.

  3. Your screenshot will automatically save to your computer, and you can find them by going to File Explorer and navigating to Videos > Captures. You can also find your captures in Game Bar, going to the Gallery menu and selecting Show my captures.

Windows 10 tablets

Best for: taking and editing screenshots while using your tablet

Taking screenshots on your tablet can seem tricky, especially since you don’t have access to a PrtScn key. However, Windows 10 tablets have built-in screenshot capabilities. You can take and edit a screenshot in just a few steps:

  1. To take a quick screenshot on a Windows 10 tablet, first make sure that the image you want to capture is visible on your screen.

  2. Next, at the same time, hold the volume down button on the side of your tablet and the Windows button at the bottom of your screen. Your screen will either dim or lighten for just a moment to let you know that you’ve taken a screenshot.

  3. Your screenshot will automatically save to Pictures > Screenshots. You can open it in your Screenshots folder and make small edits directly within the image, including enhancements like annotations and drawings.

Steps Recorder

Best for: taking screenshots of multiple screens and saving them to a single destination

When creating a tutorial or a step-by-step guide, it’s often useful to have a sequence of screenshots for reference. Taking these screen captures one at a time can be frustratingly slow, but the Windows Steps Recorder app can streamline the whole process for you. To access this application, follow these steps:

  1. Set up your screenshot images or actions. If you want to capture several pages of a website in sequence, start by opening the first one. Next, make sure that you can open each page in the order you want to capture your screenshots. Steps Recorder also tracks your keyboard and mouse activity, which means that you can also use this method to take screenshots of a series of tasks or activities. You could, for example, take screenshots of the steps to open, modify, and save a Word document.

  2. Once you have your screenshot content set up, go to the Windows Search bar via the Start menu or by pressing Win + S.

  3. In the Search bar, type “psr.exe” and hit Enter to open Steps Recorder. A toolbar will open with options to Start Record, Stop Record, and Add Comment. There’s also a down arrow to the right of the Help icon. 

  4. If you need to record more than 25 steps or screenshots, click on that down arrow and select Settings. Go to Number of recent screen captures to store and change the number to fit your needs.

  5. Once you’ve set the number of screenshots Step Recorder will take, click the Start Record button to begin taking screenshots. After you start recording, click through your steps or navigate through the windows you want to screenshot in order. Whenever you make a change to the image on your screen (other than moving your cursor), Steps Recorder will take a screenshot.

  6. When you’re done, click the Stop Record button. Steps Recorder will automatically bring up the Results window, and you can preview your screenshots here. If you’ve successfully taken screenshots of all of the screens or pages you want to capture, just hit the Save button and choose the destination on your computer where you want to save your images.

5 tips for choosing the best Windows screenshot method

So, which of these methods or apps should you use to take screenshots on your Windows 10 device? Here are a few of our top tips to help you make the best choice for your needs.

  • Make sure you’re sending your screenshot to the right destination. Do you want to save your screenshot for later use, or do you need to copy and paste it into a document, spreadsheet, or image right now? If you’re working on a larger project, or you want to make sure that you have screenshots organized well for later use, choose a screen capture method that will let you save them to a specific destination. If you’re using a screenshot right away, you may want to go with a method that sends the image to the clipboard.

  • Choose a screenshot tool that allows you to make edits. Just hitting the PrtScn key is a great way to capture a quick screenshot, but editing the image can be a bit of a hassle after the fact. Instead, if you need to make edits or enhancements to your screenshots, you may want to use another app that allows you to make edits without a third-party program.

  • Only capture the image you want to save. With some of the built-in screenshot and screen-recording options for Windows 10 computers, tablets, and phones, the controls and/or cursor cannot be removed from the captured image. Likewise, if you’re trying to capture a quick screenshot while you’re recording your screen, some of the apps will interfere with the recording by dimming or brightening part of the screen. For this type of screenshot, you may want to use a screen-recording app that has screenshot capabilities, like Movavi Screen Recorder.

  • Choose a reliable screenshot tool. One of the biggest complaints users have with Game Bar is that it’s not reliable. Users often say that, when Game Bar works, it works really well… But it has glitches that Microsoft hasn’t been able to address completely. If you need the ability to take a screenshot on the fly, and you don’t want to worry about whether your screen capture tool will work, you might want to choose a different method.

  • Use an app with an intuitive interface. While you can learn to use any of the methods here, some of the hotkey button combinations can be difficult to remember. Do you want to have to look up the command for the kind of screenshot you want to take every time you need to take one? If you need to take a screenshot quickly, you may not have time to search for an app or find the right command. Instead, we recommend choosing an application that does it all without all the complicated steps.

Summary

While there are multiple built-in ways to take a screenshot in the Windows 10 operating system, it’s sometimes easier and more efficient to use a third-party application. If you want the ability to take screenshots while you’re recording your screen without disrupting your screen recording, or if you want advanced editing and enhancement capabilities for your screenshots, we recommend trying out Movavi Screen Recorder.

Movavi Screen Recorder

The perfect way to record anything from your screen

Disclaimer: Please be aware that Movavi Screen Recorder does not allow capture of copy-protected video and audio streams.

Movavi Screen Recorder

Frequently asked questions

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