Productivity Tools

How to Take a Screenshot on Windows

how to take a screenshot on windows

Screenshots are an important tool for visual communication, especially in the workplace. As such, it is important for Windows users to know how to take a screenshot on a PC. In this article, we will discuss how to take a screenshot on Windows with either Windows’ screenshot tools or downloadable screenshot software.

Windows Snipping Tool

Windows Snipping Tool has been the native Windows screenshot tool since 2005 (it was introduced in 2002 on tablets). It is automatically installed on all Windows computers. Using Snipping Tool, you can take full-screen, rectangular, and free-form snips that can be any shape. After taking your screenshot, you can edit it using basic tools such as a pen, highlighter, eraser, and cropping tool. You can also import the image into Paint 3D for more advanced options. After editing, you can save your screenshot to your local drive, print it, or email it. 

Snip & Sketch

Despite the longevity of Snipping Tool, Windows is beginning to phase it out on Windows 10 and replace it with Snip & Sketch. Though both tools are currently available to Windows 10 users, Snip & Sketch will eventually fully replace Snipping Tool as the Windows 10 screenshot tool.

Like Snipping Tool, Snip & Sketch can take full-screen, rectangular, and free-form snips. Additionally, it can take a screenshot of a window instead of your full screen. Snip & Sketch also adds additional markup options such as a ruler, protractor, and pencil. You can share your screenshots over email, with nearby devices using wifi or Bluetooth, and by sharing them directly on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Skype, OneNote, Feedback Hub, and Cortana Reminders. 

Screenshot Windows Software

Though Windows Snipping Tool and Snip & Sketch are useful for taking quick screenshots, employees who frequently use screen captures to communicate in the workplace will need a more robust screenshot app. If you take several screenshots a day, you need an app that makes sharing quick and easy by integrating with your favorite work productivity apps and/or storing images on the cloud. Fortunately, there are several apps available to download on Windows that provide the advanced features that businesses need in a screenshot app. Let’s go over options for both free and paid apps. 

Free Windows Screenshot Tools

greenshot and lightshot logos

Though several free screenshot apps are available on Windows, I recommend Greenshot and Lightshot as the most useful and trustworthy. Greenshot can take full-screen, window, scrolling webpage, and rectangular shots. Its annotation tools include arrows, text, drawing, paint, shapes, blurring, and cropping. You can save screenshots to your computer, printed, emailed, or upload them to Microsoft Office programs or online photo hosting websites. Greenshot also includes free integrations with Jira, Box, and Imgur. 

Lightshot, on the other hand, works as an enhancement of the “print screen” Windows button. Using print screen on PC with Lightshot will let you take a custom screenshot of anywhere on your screen. Then, you can edit your screenshot using text, a highlighter, arrows, and shapes. You can save your screenshot either to your local drive or upload it to Lightshot’s cloud-based platform. Do keep in mind, however, that all screenshot uploads on Lightshot’s cloud are visible to the public. 

Paid Windows Screenshot Tools

If you need even more features, such as enterprise-level security and link sharing, then you will need to pay for a Windows screenshot app. These features are important for businesses that are dealing with confidential information and that need to share files as quickly as possible. Once again, there are many different paid screenshot apps out there–you can compare the most popular ones with our price calculator. Nevertheless, our recommendation for the best paid screenshot app is our own tool–Droplr

droplr screenshots app with selected area circled

Droplr provides a screenshot and screen recording tool that saves all of your screen captures to your own cloud page. You can take full screen, rectangular, application window, and rolling page screenshots. After you take your shot, it is immediately saved to the cloud, where it can be accessed via a generated short link. To share your screenshot, simply paste this short link into an email or messaging app. Several platforms, such as Slack, Discord, and Microsoft Teams, preview Droplr screenshots in-platform so the image can be viewed without leaving the app. 

Droplr offers several markup tools for screenshots, including arrows, shapes, pencil, highlighter, text, emojis, and blurring. For more options, you can integrate Droplr with Photoshop or Sketch to access high-level photo editing tools. 

Droplr also includes enterprise-level security features such as SSO, SSL/TLS data transfer, and full GDPR compliance. You can also select privacy options on your files that let you secure them with password and/ or email protection. This way, you can ensure that your files cannot be accessed by just anyone, even if they have found the associated short link. Droplr’s screenshot and screen recorder app begins at just $6/month. For more information, check out our pricing page or contact us online. 

What is the best way to screenshot on Windows?

Overall, Droplr provides the most options for taking, editing, and sharing screenshots on Windows. If you are a business looking for a screenshot app that will let you share images quickly and efficiently, then you should consider Droplr. Otherwise, if you’re on a budget, Greenshot and Lightshot and suitable free apps that provide several options for taking and sharing screenshots. Finally, Windows Snipping Tool and Snip and Sketch are good tools for when you need to quickly capture your screen on PC without downloading another app. 

Learn more about taking screenshots 

For a more general overview of how to take screenshots on any computer, read our article 4 Simple Ways to Take a Screenshot. This article covers more options and provides a pros and cons list that quickly summarizes each app. 

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