How to Take a Screenshot on Laptop

An image of the display on a laptop can be created via built-in utilities or some third-party applications that should be downloaded. The first way is good for those who rarely create images of their displays. The second method is more convenient for everyday use as it requires less time spent on saving pictures. Let us discuss them both more closely.

Basic Options

Most laptop keyboards have a dedicated button for capturing a display. It is called PrintScreen. In some cases, the abbreviated name of the key is PrtSc. When you press it, the image from the monitor is transferred to the clipboard. This is a special memory area for the temporary storage of data.

To save a snapshot, do the following:

  1. Press the PrintScreen key.
  2. Open a graphic editor or another app to insert a snapshot (Microsoft Word, email client).
  3. Insert an image into the workspace.
  4. Save the created picture.

Furthermore, you can use the standard Paint as a graphic editor. Adding an obtained image to it is done using the Paste menu item in the Clipboard section. An alternative pasting method is the combination CTRL + V.

If necessary, you can make some changes to the resulting picture. One can crop unnecessary areas, highlight the main information with a frame, and add comments. These basic options are enough for general cases.

Once you have completed your snapshot, save it to the desired directory on your Windows file system. For this purpose, click the button with the image of a floppy disk in the upper part of the window. The other option is the CTRL + S combination.

When recording, the app will prompt you to choose a name (the proposed one is Untitled) and an image type. The main available formats are PNG, JPG, BMP, and GIF. The PNG format is best used to convey interface details since the file compression with this extension is lossless, unlike JPG. The last two types of files have a lower color depth, so the picture quality will be worse.

More Built-in Tools

Among the built-in tools that allow you to create a picture, it is worth noting the utility named Scissors. It is introduced into Windows OS starting with Vista. The advantages of this tool are the possibility to edit images before saving and a large selection of zones for creating a snapshot:

  • any chosen area
  • rectangle
  • whole laptop display
  • separate window

Keep in mind that if you are interested in the active window only and wish to capture it without special utilities, press the ALT + PrintScreen buttons together. The result will be instantly transferred to the clipboard.

The order of further work with such a picture does not differ from the standard one. It will be available for insertion into any graphic editor or other programs that allow you to add multimedia files.

Useful Third-party Services

When in-depth editing is required, it is advisable to search for some third-party tools. Many of them are free and give amazing opportunities for changing your initial picture.


This is a popular free program for quickly capturing different images of a laptop display. Its advantages include:

  • A simple interface
  • A large number of settings
  • An opportunity to upload your pictures to the server by pressing one button

The latter feature makes the program useful not only for saving images but also for publishing them.

After installation, LightShot is added to the Windows startup list. Each time the OS starts, the app minimizes to the system tray and intercepts the pressing of the PrtSc button. You can select another key for creating images of your display in the Hot Keys menu. Using the keys on the bottom panel, you can save a photo, print it, share it on social networks, or upload it to an application server. The controls on the right side allow you to change the picture as you wish.

At the last stage of installation, the user is prompted to download some third-party components and set Yandex as the home page. If you do not need these options, uncheck the appropriate boxes before clicking the Finish button.

Save your images with Clip2net

This utility has a small installation file (about 6 MB) and an impressive number of built-in functions. The main task of Clip2net is to create pictures of the entire desktop, individual windows, or some selected areas.

In the professional (paid) version, the video recording function is available. It can be useful for saving screencasts – step-by-step recordings of actions performed on a laptop. Photos and videos can be uploaded to the server and then shared with other users.

The basic version of the app for Windows is free. It allows you to host up to 20 images per day in the cloud, which are automatically deleted after 30 days. At the same time, each user is allocated up to 100 MB of disk space for storing screenshots. After the subscription payment, you can increase this volume to 1000 MB as well as remove restrictions on storage time and the number of downloads per day.

Joxi App

When you first start this utility, you will be prompted to enter an email address or authorize through an account on a social network. This step is mandatory; Joxi will not work without authorization. Among the available options are the following social networks:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter

After registering via e-mail or logging in to a social account network, the user is provided with 1024 MB to host their images. When using the paid version, pictures can also be uploaded via FTP/SFTP or copied to your Dropbox account.

An important point in the settings is the image quality. It affects the size of the final file: the higher the quality, the more space the image will take up on the laptop’s hard drive. The default value is medium.

This set of tools is enough to capture anything that you wish on your laptop desktop and further edit the picture.

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