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Five ways to take a screenshot in macOS

Step-by-step instructions

1. Take a screenshot of your entire screen

Type Command+Shift+3 to save a screenshot of your entire screen as a .PNG file on your desktop. Before macOS saves the file, a thumbnail of your screenshot will appear in the lower-right corner. This feature was introduced in macOS Mojave (10.14). If you click the thumbnail, you can mark up, crop, and share your screenshot. When you click Done, the screenshot will be saved on your desktop.

NOTE: If you want to paste your screenshot into an email or document, hold Control with the Command+Shift+3 keyboard shortcut to copy it to the clipboard instead of saving it as a file. Then you can paste it into your document.

2. Take a screenshot of a selected area

Type Command+Shift+4, then drag the cursor over the area you want to capture. Let go of the mouse to save the screenshot (or press Esc to cancel).

To take a screenshot of a window, press Command+Shift+4, followed by Space Bar. The cursor will turn into a camera icon, allowing you to click and capture a specific window.

NOTE: macOS saves screenshots of windows with a drop shadow by default. If you want to capture the window without the drop shadow, hold Option when you click the window.

3. Take a screenshot using the screenshot toolbar

Type Command+Shift+5 to open the screenshot toolbar. This shortcut was introduced in macOS Mojave and provides three screenshot options and two video recording options. You can choose where to save the .PNG screenshot or .MOV video recording.

4. Take a screenshot of the MacBook Pro Touch Bar

If you're using a Mac with a Touch Bar, you can type Command+Shift+6 to capture a screenshot of the entire Touch Bar, which will be saved on the desktop.

5. Take a screenshot using Apple Preview

With Preview open, select File → Take Screenshot and choose one of the three options. After taking the screenshot, the image will open directly in Preview. You can then save the screenshot (File →Save) in a format other than PNG, such as .HEIC, .JPEG, or .PDF.

Updated: May 10, 2019