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Taking a screenshot is an easy way to share what you see on your screen. If it’s a bug, you can take a picture and send it to tech support. If it’s a social media post, you can capture the moment and share the image with your friends and followers.
How To Get A Screenshot On Mac
Screenshot tools on the Mac have always been easy to use, but somewhat rudimentary. You can capture almost anything—if you know the right keyboard shortcuts. Since the release of Mojave, macOS now has a built-in screenshot tool – similar to what you might find in Windows – that allows you to take screenshots with the click of a button.
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To open the Screenshot tool, select Launchpad > Other > Screenshot or use the keyboard shortcut Shift + Command + 5. The floating toolbar offers options to capture the entire screen, a selected window, or a custom portion of the screen. You can also capture a full-screen video or a custom selection. Here’s how to capture what’s on your screen.
You can take a screenshot of the entire screen by clicking the Capture Full Screen button on the screenshot toolbar, then tapping Capture. Otherwise, use the keyboard shortcut Shift+Command+3 to take a screenshot.
To capture a specific part of the screen, use the Capture Selected Window button on the toolbar or press Shift + Command + 4 and the cursor will turn into a hair.
Click and drag the cross so that it covers the area you want to capture. Release to capture the selected area or press Esc to cancel. By holding down the Shift, Option, or Space key, you can change the shape, size, and position of the selection area before taking the photo.
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To take a screenshot of a specific window or menu, press Shift + Command + 5 and select Capture Selected Window from the toolbar. The cursor changes to a camera icon. Move the camera over the window to highlight it, then click to save the image. You can also go back and forth between capturing a custom option and clicking on a specific menu by pressing the space bar.
If you have a Mac with a Touch Bar, you can take a screenshot of it by pressing Shift + Command + 6.
Save the video by pressing Shift + Command + 5, then choose Save Entire Screen or Save Selected Portion. When everything is ready, click the Save button to start recording. To stop recording and save the .MOV file, click the Stop icon in the macOS menu bar.
By default, screenshots are saved to your desktop, but you can change this. Open the screenshot tool with Shift + Command + 5 or go to Launchpad > Other > Screenshot.
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Click Options > Save and select a new default location—Desktop, Documents, Clipboard, Mail, Messages, or View. Click Other Location to select a specific folder.
Instead of saving screenshots directly to your computer, you can send them to the clipboard by adding the Control key to any shortcut command. For example, use Shift + Command + Control + 3 to capture the entire screen, or Shift + Command + Control + 4 to capture a portion of the screen, then place the screenshot wherever you want.
By default, Mac screenshots are saved as .png files, but they can be quite large, especially if you have a large Retina monitor. Switch to .jpg with a little coding. Go to Launchpad > Other > Terminal and type the following in the new window:
When prompted, enter your password and restart your computer. Future screenshots should be saved in your preferred format. You can always change it back by entering the above command with PNG at the end instead.
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If you prefer a third-party screenshot app, Snagithas has everything you need, but it also comes with a $50 price tag. The same company also makes a free program called TechSmith Capture (opens in new window) (formerly Jing). Other free options include Skitch (opens in new window) and LightShot (opens in new window), while Snappy (opens in new window) can sync screenshots with the Snappy iOS app (opens in new window).
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“How to take a screenshot on Mac” is one of the most popular searches when MacBook users are figuring out how to take screenshots of their screen. Whether you’re saving something for later or sending something you saw while surfing the web to a friend, Mac screenshots are a great way to quickly convey information.
The easiest way to take a full screenshot of your entire MacOS desktop is to use a handy keyboard shortcut.
If you don’t need to capture everything on the screen, you can take a partial screenshot of an image, block of text, or whatever you want to capture. With this method, you can save time by cropping while shooting instead of editing later.
If you want to get even more detailed information, you can take a screenshot of a specific object, window or menu. This way, you can get an exact screenshot of what you want to keep without having to do it manually and cut off pieces.
Take A Screenshot On Your Mac
The latest versions of macOS allow you to manually take a screenshot with the aptly named Screenshot app. Added to macOS Mojave, Screenshot gives you a variety of capture options, including full-screen, part-of-screen, or manual click-and-drag options.
You can even record your screenshot from this app and choose where to save the files so you don’t lose them later.
Philip Treacy is Associate Editor of Laptop Mag, where he reviews laptops, phones and other gadgets while covering the latest industry news. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in journalism, Philip became a tech reporter for the Daily Dot. There, he writes reviews of a variety of gadgets and covers everything from social media trends to cyber security. He previously wrote for RCR Wireless News covering 5G and IoT. When he’s not tinkering with devices, you can find Philip playing video games, reading, traveling or watching football. By default, all screenshots you take on your Mac end up on the desktop. You can also set them to save in any custom folder, such as Downloads.
If you’re like me, you probably move some screenshots (such as those of specific applications) into your project folders. While this helps with organization, it makes finding all the screenshots saved on your Mac more difficult than it needs to be.
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In this tutorial, we’ll use some little-known tricks to help you quickly find all the screenshots you’ve taken on your Mac, no matter how deeply buried.
At the center of attention, macOS tags screenshots with a specific key stored in the file’s metadata. This makes it very easy, if not trivial, to find all screenshots using Finder, Spotlight, or Terminal.
1) Click on the desktop, and then select Find from the Finder menu. Alternatively, press Command (⌘)-F on your keyboard.
The Finder search window will instantly populate any matching screenshots stored on your Mac’s startup disk, including any iCloud Drive screenshots cached on that Mac.
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To delete them all from your Mac at once, regardless of where they’re stored, choose Select All from the Finder’s Edit menu and drag the files to the Trash.
To narrow your search to specific file types, click the Image menu and select JPEG, TIFF, GIF, PNG, or BMP. By default, macOS saves screenshots in PNG format.
Switch to icon view in the toolbar to view screenshots visually. You can also press Command (⌘) – 1, Command (⌘) – 2, Command (⌘) – 3, or Command (⌘) – 4 to quickly switch between Icon, List, Column, and Cover Stream views.
Finally, you can save this search for quick access from the Finder side menu by pressing the Save button in the upper-right corner of the window. Now give your custom search a name (i.e. “Screenshots”), make sure the Add to Sidebar box is checked, then hit Save.
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For a quick refresher, macOS Smart Folders work just like iTunes Smart Playlists or the Screenshots album
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