10 ways to take a screenshot on any Windows 10 device

  • To take a screenshot on Windows 10, you can use the PrtScn button on your keyboard or a variety of free apps, like Snip & Sketch.
  • If you want to take a screen recording, you can use the Game Bar by pressing Windows Key + G.
  • Several other third-party apps exist with even more features, like automatically uploading your screenshots to the internet.
  • Visit Business 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.

How to screenshot on Windows 10 using the PrtScn key

To take a screenshot on Windows 10, press the Windows key + Print Screen (PrtScn) key. Your screen will go dim and a screenshot of your entire screen will save to the Pictures > Screenshots folder.

With the PrtScn key, you can also take a screenshot on Windows 10 in a few more ways:

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


Quick tip: The Print Screen key command applies to Microsoft Surface tablets, but there’s also a quicker method. To take a screenshot on a Surface laptop, press the Power Button + Volume Up Button. On a Surface 3 or earlier, you’ll need to press the Windows Logo + Volume Down Button. The screen will dim, and your screenshot will be saved to Pictures > Screenshots. 

How to screenshot on Windows 10 using Snip & Sketch

Snip & Sketch is Windows’ latest screenshot tool that makes it easier to customize, share, and annotate screenshots. It essentially acts as an upgraded version of the Snipping Tool. 

  1. To activate Snip & Sketch, use the keyboard shortcut Windows Key + Shift + S. You can also open the Snip & Sketch tool from the Start menu or by searching for it.

  2. Upon pressing 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.

  3. After taking your screenshot, it will be saved to your clipboard and a preview notification will appear in the lower-right corner of your screen. Clicking the image will take you to the Snip & Sketch app, where you can edit the screenshot with the available drawing tools before saving or sharing it.


Quick tip: To take a screenshot with Snip & Sketch directly, open the app and click “New.” You can also take a timed screenshot with a delay of 3 or 10 seconds, which is ideal for capturing any context menus or pop-up windows that disappear after another item is clicked on.

How to screenshot on Windows 10 using the Snipping Tool

The Snipping Tool is Windows’ long-running screenshot tool that will eventually be replaced by Snip & Sketch. Until it’s completely phased out, it’s still a great way to take screenshots in Windows 10, 8, 7, and Vista.

  1. Start the Snipping Tool from the Start menu.
  2. To begin the screenshot process, use the “Mode” button to choose whether you’d like your screenshot to be free-form, rectangular, window or full-screen, then click the “New” button.
    You can choose the kind of screenshot that Snipping Tool takes with the program’s menus.Dave Johnson/Business Insider
  3. You can also time your capture up to five seconds via the “Delay” dropdown menu. 
  4. 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.

How to screenshot on Windows 10 using the Game Bar

The Game Bar is an overlay you can use within most Windows games to take screenshots and record video. 

  1. To open the Game Bar, press Windows Key + G. You can use it in any app, not just games.
  2. On the overlay menu, click the camera icon to capture a full-screen screenshot. You can also record a video clip by pressing the red record button, with the option to include audio by clicking the microphone icon. 
    The Game Bar has a screenshot tool that appears as an overlay on top of games.Dave Johnson/Business Insider
  3. Screenshots and video clips captured by the Game Bar are saved in PNG format to the “Captures” folder, found in your Videos folder. You can also find it through the Game Bar, by clicking “Show all captures” underneath the screenshot and recording buttons.

    Quick tip: If the Game Bar doesn’t open with the Windows Key + G shortcut, make sure it’s enabled. To enable the Game Bar, search “Game bar settings” and in the menu, toggle on “Record game clips, screenshots, and broadcast using Game Bar.”

Take a screenshot on Windows 10 using third-party apps

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.

  • Snagit: A screenshot tool that notably allows you to create animated GIFs and take full-page and scrolling screenshots. The downside? The premium version costs $50.
  • Lightshot: A free screenshot tool designed for quick social sharing. 
  • Greenshot: Another free screenshot tool with editing abilities and the option to capture a complete scrolling web page.



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