Taking a screenshot on your Mac

Capture the Mac screen according to your requirements, such as the entire screen, a specific window or even and a portion of the screen or window. In this guide you will learn all the methods to take screenshots on Mac.

You will see how you can take a screenshot using the following methods.

  • Use keyboard shortcuts
  • Use the screenshot toolbar (macOS Mojave or later only)

Use the keyboard shortcut

Shortcut keys that you can use to capture the full screen, the selected portion of the screen, or any windows or menu.


Full screen screenshot

  1. You need to press the following keys from the keyboard to take a screenshot, press Shift + Command + 3
  2. After taking the screenshot, you will see a preview of the thumbnail in the bottom right corner of the screen. After that, it will be stored on your desktop by default.

Screenshot of a section of the screen

  1. Press Shift + Command + 4 from the keyboard to take a screenshot of a section of your screen.
  2. When you do this, you become a pointer in a cross hair .
  3. Just drag it to the position where you want to start the screenshot, click and drag to select an area and then release your mouse or trackpad. In case you change your mind and want to re-select the area, just press the Esc key to cancel before releasing the trackpad or mouse.
Read more: take a screenshot on a Mac with Terminal

Screenshot of a specific window or menu

  1. Open the window or menu you want to record on your Mac
  2. Press Shift + Command + 4 + Spacebar, it will convert your mouse pointer to a camera icon . Here you can press the Esc key to cancel the recording.
    capture specific windows or menu Mac
  3. Take the camera icon to a specific window or menu, then highlight it, click it. If you do not want to capture the shadow on the screenshot, press the Option key while clicking.
  4. Click on the thumbnail preview in the lower right corner to edit it, otherwise the screenshot will be saved on your desktop.

Use the toolbar toolbar

In addition to the above keyboard shortcut method, you can use the Screenshot Tollbar method to capture the screen and record videos. Screenshot Toolbar is a choice if you want to capture your screen or change the screenshot options like the saved location. Again, the Screenshot toolbar is only available in macOS Mojave or later versions.

  1. To open the screenshot toolbar, press Shift + Command + 5 and the set of tools will appear at the bottom of the screen by default.
    Mac Toolbar Screenshot
  2. On the left, three tools can be used to take screenshots (capture the entire screen, capture a window, capture a portion of the screen.)
    Screenshot Toolbar Mac 1
  3. In the middle, the two recording instruments can be used to record the screens (record the whole screen, record a part of the screen.)
    screenshot screenshot toolbar Mac

By default, all the screenshots captured on the Mac are stored on the desktop as a PNG file format named ‘Screen Shot’ [date]by[time]”. Click the Options button to see the different customization options. You can choose another location to save the screenshots or set a timer to record the screenshot.


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