There are several ways to take a screenshot on Windows 11. Most of the screenshot shortcuts are the same as on Windows 10, but there are a few lesser-known screen capture features unique to Windows 11, too, including tools that make capturing specific parts of your screen easier than saving an image of your entire desktop or relying on third-party apps.
Print Screen shortcuts
Let’s start with the most obvious method: the Print Screen key (truncated to “PrntScrn” on some keyboards), which is your keyboard’s dedicated screenshot button.
Full-size keyboards usually have a dedicated Print Screen key, but smaller keyboards and laptops often put the Print Screen key as a secondary function elsewhere (normally on the F12 key), in which case you need to press the “FN” key and the Print Screen key at the same time.
There are several ways to use this key for screenshots, but these are the most common:
- Press Windows key + Print Screen key to save a PNG image of whatever is currently on-screen in the Pictures > Screenshots folder.
- The other standard screenshot technique for Windows is to just press Print Screen (or FN + Print Screen) to copy an image of the current desktop to your clipboard. With the screenshot copied, open any image editing app or word-processing app that supports images, and paste it (either Right-click > Paste, or press Ctrl + V), then save the document.
- Press Alt + Print Screen to copy a screenshot of just the window or app that you’re actively using to the clipboard. Make sure you click on the app or folder window you want to capture before pressing the shortcut. Remember to paste and save the screenshot in another program.
- If your keyboard doesn’t have a Print Screen key at all, the Windows key + FN + Space shortcut will also copy a screenshot to your clipboard.
Screen Snipping and Snip & Sketch tools
Along with the default Print Screen shortcuts, Windows 11 also has two built-in apps that let you click and drag to select specific areas to screenshot: Screen Snipping and Snip & Sketch.
Technically, both apps integrate with one another; you use Snip & Sketch to make the screenshot, then Snipping Tool to crop, edit, or draw over the selection and save it directly as an image. The Snipping Tool menu also includes a capture delay, so you can time your screenshot to happen three, five, or 10 seconds later.
The easiest way to get started is to search for “Snipping tool” in the Start menu and open it from the search results.
Alternatively, you can change the Print Key function to open the Snipping Tool instead of taking a screengrab. This is done in the Windows 11 settings menu:
- Go to Settings > Accessibility > Keyboard.
- Enable “Use the Print Screen button to open screen snipping.”
- Close the Settings menu, then press “Print Screen” to open the Snipping Tool.
Here’s how to take a screenshot with the tool once it’s opened:
- Click “New” from the Snipping Tool pop-up menu or press “Windows key + Shift + S” to start a new capture with Snip & Sketch. You can also set up a capture delay, if you want.
- A tiny menu appears at the top of the screen, and your desktop will dim slightly.
- The menu includes four icons that will change your snippet shape: The first icon on the left is a rectangular selection, the second is a “free form” selection, third captures the currently selected app or folder window (like Alt + Print Screen), and the right-most icon is a full screen capture (like pressing the Print Screen key or Windows key + Print Screen).
- Click the selection type you want, then click and drag to select the part of the screen you want to save as a screengrab.
- The image will open in the Snipping Tool menu. There will be several editing options, including pen tools, image cropping, and other adjustments you can use, if desired.
- Click the “Save” icon to save the image to the Pictures > Screenshots folder.
You can also use Snip & Sketch without using the Snipping Tool (I know, it’s confusing):
- Press Windows key + Shift + S at any time you’re not using the Snipping Tool to open Sketch & Snip instead. This skips the Snipping Tool menu for setting delay timers and takes you directly to the screengrab menu.
- After taking the screenshot, it will be copied to your clipboard so you can paste and save it elsewhere.
- You can also click the pop-up notification to open your screenshot in Snipping Tool so you can edit and save it as an image.
Take screenshots with the Xbox Game Bar
The last method we’ll cover for taking screenshots in Windows 11 is to use the Xbox Game Bar. The Xbox Game Bar comes pre-installed on Windows 10 and 11 and features several tools like an audio mixer, Xbox social menu, and screen capture tools that are great for recording gameplay videos or screenshots—but you can also use it to take screengrabs of whatever’s on screen.
- Press Windows Key + G to open the Xbox Game Bar overlay.
- Look for the “Capture” window (it’s in the upper-left by default) and click the camera icon to take a screenshot. You can also press the keyboard shortcut Windows key + Alt + Print Screen to take the screenshot instead.
- Xbox Game Bar screenshots are saved in the Windows 11 Videos folder under Videos > Captures.
Taking screenshots with the Xbox Game Bar is functionally the same as taking them with the Print Screen shortcuts or the snipping tools, but it’s a worthwhile backup option. And since Xbox Game Bar screenshots are saved to a different folder, it can be helpful for keeping certain screenshots–such as gameplay images–organized to their own separate directory.
Between the numerous keyboard shortcuts and the built-in Snipping Tool, Sketch & Snip, and Xbox Game Bar apps, you now have numerous methods for taking a screenshot on Windows 11.
Updated January 2024, with information on Xbox Game Bar screenshots and revised steps for the latest version of Windows 11.
The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans
Here are the cheapest plans available for Australia’s most popular NBN speed tier.