10 ways to take a screenshot on any Windows 10 device

Microsoft Windows 10
It’s easy to take screenshots on Windows 10 computers or tablets. Drew Angerer/Getty Images
  • To take a screenshot on Windows 10, you can use the PrtScn button on your keyboard or tools like Snip & Sketch.
  • If you want to take a screen recording, you can use the Game Bar by pressing Windows Key + G.
  • Third-party apps offer even more features, like automatically uploading screenshots to the internet.
  • Visit Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

If you need to capture a screenshot of something on your computer screen, Windows 10 offers a variety of methods for doing just that.

Whether you want to save the entire screen, or just a piece of it, we’ve rounded up all the most common techniques for taking a Windows 10 screenshot.

Print Screen

The easiest way to take a screenshot on Windows 10 is the Print Screen (PrtScn) key. To capture your entire screen, simply press PrtScn on the upper-right side of your keyboard.

The screenshot will be saved to your Clipboard. To save the file, paste the screenshot into any program that allows you to insert images, like Microsoft Word or Paint.

Print screen windows 10 screenshot
Paste your screenshot into a program like Paint to save and edit it. William Antonelli/Insider

Windows + Print Screen

To take a screenshot on Windows 10 and automatically save the file, press the Windows key + PrtScn.

Your screen will go dim and a screenshot of your entire screen will save to the Pictures > Screenshots folder.

Windows key
You can automatically save screenshots by pressing the Windows Key along with Print Screen. T3 Magazine/Getty Images

Alt + Print Screen

To capture only the active window you’re working in and copy it to your Clipboard, press Alt + PrtScn. You’ll need to paste it into another program to save it.

Snip & Sketch tool

Snip & Sketch is the best way to screenshot on Windows if you’re looking to customize, annotate, or share your screen captures.

To activate Snip & Sketch, use the keyboard shortcut Windows Key + Shift + S. Your screen will dim and a mini menu will appear at the top of your screen, giving you the option to take a rectangular, free-form, window, or full-screen capture.

Snip & sketch windows
Click the menu to take a rectangular, free-form, window, or full-screen capture (from left to right). William Antonelli/Insider

With these Snip & Skitch options, you can choose how you’d like to take a screenshot:

Mode Function
Rectangular Size a rectangle for your screenshot.
Free-form Draw free-hand with your cursor.
Window Choose a specific window to capture.
Full-screen Grab an image of your entire screen.

After you capture the screenshot, it will be saved to your clipboard and a preview notification will appear in the lower-right corner of your screen.

Click on the preview notification to open the Snip & Sketch app and edit the screenshot with the available drawing tools before saving or sharing.

Snipping Tool

Though Snip & Sketch will eventually replace the Snipping Tool on Windows, it’s still possible to use the old tool to take screenshots in Windows 10, 8, 7, and Vista.

To start the Snipping Tool, you’ll have to find it through the search bar. Use the “Mode” button to customize your screenshot and then click the “New” button to capture your screen.

Snipping tool windows screenshot
You can customize your screenshot with the Snipping Tool. William Antonelli/Insider

You can also time your capture up to five seconds via the “Delay” dropdown menu. After you take your screenshot, it’ll open in a new window, where you can annotate it, save it, or share it with Microsoft Outlook.

Game Bar

The Game Bar is an overlay you can use within most Windows 10 apps and games to take screenshots and record video. To open the Game Bar, press Windows Key + G.

On the overlay menu, click the camera icon to capture a full-screen screenshot. You can also record a video clip by pressing the record button, with the option to include audio by clicking the microphone icon.

Game bar windows screenshot
You can take screenshots or screen recordings with the Game Bar on Windows 10. William Antonelli/Insider

Screenshots and video clips captured by the Game Bar are saved in PNG format to the Videos > Captures folder. You can also find it through the Game Bar, by clicking “Show all captures” underneath the screenshot and recording buttons.

Power + Volume Up

To take a screenshot on Windows 10 with a Microsoft Surface device, press the Power Button + Volume Up Button. The screen will dim, and your screenshot will save to the Pictures > Screenshots folder.

Third-party screenshot apps for Windows

If you’re unsatisfied with any of the built-in Windows methods, there are third-party screenshot tools worth considering, each with their own extra offerings.

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Screenshot apps like Lightshot are useful for social sharing. William Antonelli/Insider
  • Snagit is a screenshot tool that allows you to create animated GIFs, take full-page screenshots, and more. The downside? The premium version costs $50. There’s also a 30-day free trial, although any picture you capture during this trial will be watermarked.
  • Lightshot is a free screenshot tool designed for quick social sharing. When you download and install Lightshot on Windows 10, it replaces the Print Screen function and offers more editing capabilities.
  • Greenshot is another free tool that allows you to edit and customize screenshots, as well as the option to capture a complete scrolling web page.

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