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Your Mac has a hidden screenshot program – here’s how to find it

Wondering how to take a screenshot with your Mac? There’s no “Print Screen” button on your Mac keyboard, sure, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the process is complicated. Using various keyboard shortcuts, you can capture a screenshot of your entire display and everything on it, or you can simply drag a box around the designated area you want to capture. There’s a variety of other screenshot methods — including those for capturing a specific window or growing your selection from the center — all of which produce images you can then use to flaunt your latest high score or clarify a problem with tech support. Here’s a guide on how to take a screenshot on a Mac, whether you prefer capturing images using keyboard shortcuts or Preview.

Taking a screenshot using keyboard commands

To capture the entire screen and save it to the clipboard, hit Command+Shift+Control+3 Screenshot keyboard shortcut 3
To capture a selected area and save it to the clipboard, hit Command+Shift+Control+4 Screenshot keyboard shortcut 4

Using these same keyboard shortcuts mentioned above without pressing “Control” will save the screenshot as a PNG file to your desktop, instead of your clipboard. Also, when you trigger the area option — i.e. Command+Shift+Control+4 — your mouse cursor will become a cross hair, letting you select the region of the screen you want to select. You can also fine-tune your selection, if desired. To do so, try pressing one the following button combinations after you hit the initial shortcut keys.

Hit the Spacebar to change your pointer into a camera and grab a full window Screenshot keyboard shortcut 5
 Hold Option to grow your selection from the center Screenshot keyboard shortcut 6
Hold Shift to lock in the vertical or horizontal position Screenshot keyboard shortcut 7
Hold Space to move the selection while locking the aspect ratio Screenshot keyboard shortcut 8
Hold Shift+Space to lock in horizontal or vertical while moving the locked selection Screenshot keyboard shortcut 9
Hit Escape to cancel your screenshot Screenshot keyboard shortcut 10
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