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5 Foolproof Methods to Capture Screenshots on Your Mac

Capturing screenshots on a Mac is a useful feature that allows you to save and share images of your screen with others. Whether you need to capture an error message, save a webpage, or share a funny moment from a video, taking a screenshot on your Mac is quick and easy. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll walk you through the various methods you can use to screenshot on a Mac.

Method 1: Capture the Entire Screen

To take a screenshot of the entire screen on your Mac, follow these steps:

  1. Position your screen exactly as you want it to appear in the screenshot.
  2. Press the “Command” (⌘) + “Shift” + “3” keys simultaneously.
  3. You will hear a camera shutter sound, and the screenshot will be automatically saved as a PNG file on your desktop.

Method 2: Capture a Selected Portion of the Screen

If you only want to capture a specific portion of your screen, follow these steps:

  1. Arrange the screen to show the content you want to capture.
  2. Press “Command” (⌘) + “Shift” + “4” keys simultaneously. Your cursor will change to a crosshair pointer.
  3. Click and drag the crosshair to select the area you want to capture. As you drag, the dimensions of the selected area will be displayed.
  4. Release the mouse button to capture the selected portion. Again, you’ll hear the camera shutter sound, and the screenshot will be saved as a PNG file on your desktop.

Method 3: Capture a Specific Window

If you want to capture a specific window, such as an application or a dialogue box, follow these steps:

  1. Open the window you want to capture and make sure it’s in the foreground.
  2. Press “Command” (⌘) + “Shift” + “4” keys simultaneously. Your cursor will turn into a crosshair pointer.
  3. Press the “Spacebar.” The crosshair will change into a camera pointer.
  4. Move the camera pointer over the window you want to capture. The window will be highlighted in blue.
  5. Click the mouse or trackpad to capture the window. Once again, the camera shutter sound will play, and the screenshot will be saved as a PNG file on your desktop.

Method 4: Capture the Touch Bar (For MacBook Pro Users)

If you have a MacBook Pro with a Touch Bar, you can capture screenshots of it by following these steps:

  1. Display the content you want to capture on the Touch Bar.
  2. Press “Command” (⌘) + “Shift” + “6” keys simultaneously.
  3. You will hear the camera shutter sound, and the screenshot of the Touch Bar will be saved as a PNG file on your desktop.

Method 5: Crop and Edit Screenshots

After taking a screenshot, you may want to crop or make some edits to the image. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Locate the screenshot file on your desktop.
  2. Double-click the file to open it in the Preview application.
  3. In Preview, click the “Show Markup Toolbar” button, which looks like a toolbox.
  4. Select the “Selection” tool from the toolbar and use it to draw a selection around the area you want to crop.
  5. Click the “Crop” button in the toolbar to crop the image to the selected area.
  6. To make additional edits, use the tools in the Markup Toolbar. You can add text, shapes, annotations, and more.
  7. Once you’re done editing, click “File” in the menu bar and choose “Save” to save the changes to your screenshot.

Method 6: Capture a Menu

If you want to capture a specific menu on your Mac, such as a dropdown menu or a context menu, follow these steps:

  1. Open the menu you want to capture.
  2. Press and hold the “Command” () key.
  3. While holding the “Command” key, press “Shift” and “4” simultaneously. Your cursor will change to a crosshair pointer.
  4. Move the crosshair over the menu you want to capture. As you hover over the menu, it will be highlighted.
  5. Click the mouse or trackpad to capture the menu. The screenshot will be saved as a PNG file on your desktop.

Change Default Screenshot Location

By default, screenshots are saved on your desktop. However, if you prefer to save them in a different location, follow these steps to change the default screenshot location:

  1. Open the Terminal application on your Mac. You can find it in the Applications folder under Utilities.
  2. In the Terminal window, type the following command: defaults write com.apple.screencapture location [folder path] Replace [folder path] with the desired location where you want to save your screenshots. For example, if you want to save them in a folder named “Screenshots” on your Desktop, the command will be: defaults write com.apple.screencapture location ~/Desktop/Screenshots
  3. Press “Enter” to execute the command.
  4. To apply the changes, you need to restart the SystemUIServer process. Enter the following command in the Terminal window and press “Enter“: killall SystemUIServer

Now, any future screenshots you capture will be saved in the specified folder.

Conclusion

Taking screenshots on your Mac is a convenient way to capture and share information from your screen. Whether you need to capture the entire screen, a specific portion, a window, or even the Touch Bar, you can use the various methods described in this guide. Additionally, you can crop and edit your screenshots using the Preview application. Remember that you can also change the default screenshot location to suit your preferences. With these techniques, you’ll be able to capture and share screenshots effortlessly on your Mac.

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