macOS

How to take a screenshot in Mac OS X

While Windows offers the print screen key on most keyboards, Mac OS X has several different ways to obtain a screenshot of your desktop or a specific area of your screen.

While Windows offers the print screen key on most keyboards, Mac OS X has several different ways to obtain a screenshot of your desktop or a specific area of your screen.

The following keyboard commands will generate a screenshot:

  • Command-Shift-3: Take a screenshot of the screen, and save it as a file on the desktop
  • Command-Shift-4, gives you a cursor to select an area on the screen: Take a screenshot of an area and save it as a file on the desktop
  • Command-Shift-4, then space, then click a window: Take a screenshot of a window and save it as a file on the desktop
  • Command-Control-Shift-3: Take a screenshot of the screen, and save it to the clipboard
  • Command-Control-Shift-4, gives you a cursor to select an area on the screen: Take a screenshot of an area and save it to the clipboard
  • Command-Control-Shift-4, then space, then click a window: Take a screenshot of a window and save it to the clipboard

In Leopard, the following keys can be held down while selecting an area (via Command-Shift-4 or Command-Control-Shift-4):

  • Space, to lock the size of the selected region and instead move it when the mouse moves
  • Shift, to resize only one edge of the selected region
  • Option, to resize the selected region with its center as the anchor point

Now if this doesn’t quite cut it for you there are some third party app’s that can perform the same tasks for you and even come with some additional features. Jing takes static screenshots and allows you to automatically share them via email, IM or Twitter. Jing also has the ability to make a short video of what you see on your computer screen and share it. Jing offers a free version as well as a Pro version with some added features.

What about recording a video of my desktop?

Don’t worry we will be covering that in future posts.

About the author

Kevin

Kevin is the Founder and Senior Editor of Tech Heavy. When he isn't writing about the latest tech tools he spends his days working in an IT department in Dubuque, IA. @kevincray

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