How To Mac OS X

How To Take Screenshots in Mac OS X

If you want to learn how to take screenshots in Mac OS X there are multiple ways of doing it. Below I have listed the different shortcut keys for each.

Command-Shift-3: This will take a screenshot of the screen, and save it as a file on the desktop
Command-Shift-4, then select an area: This will take a screenshot of an area and save it as a file on the desktop
Command-Shift-4, then space, then click a window: This will take a screenshot of a window and save it as a file on the desktop
Command-Control-Shift-3: This will take a screenshot of the screen, and save it to the clipboard
Command-Control-Shift-4, then select an area: This will take a screenshot of an area and save it to the clipboard
Command-Control-Shift-4, then space, then click a window: This will take a screenshot of a window and save it to the clipboard

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

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

Each version of Mac OS X has different save formats for screenshots:

  • Mac OS X 10.2 (Jaguar): jpg
  • Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther): pdf
  • Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger) and later: png

In Mac OS X 10.4 and later, the default screenshot format can be changed, by opening Terminal (located at /Applications/Utilities/Terminal) and typing in:

defaults write com.apple.screencapture type image_format killall SystemUIServer

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