How to Copy Screen on Windows: A Comprehensive Guide

Hey, fellow Windows users! Have you ever wanted to copy your screen but didn’t know how? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Copying your screen can be useful in many situations, such as when you need to show someone an error message or when you want to save an important piece of information.

In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps on how to copy your screen on Windows, so you can do it easily and confidently. We’ll cover everything from the basics to some advanced tips and tricks.

So without further ado, let’s dive into the steps!

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Copy Screen on Windows

Step 1: Determine Your Purpose for Screen Copying

Before we get started, it’s important to determine the reason why you want to copy your screen. This will help you decide what type of screen capture you should use. There are three types of screen capture: full screen, window, and custom.

If you want to capture your entire screen, then you should use full screen capture. If you only want to capture a specific window, then you should choose window capture. And if you want to capture a custom-sized part of your screen, then custom capture is the way to go.

Step 2: Choose Your Screen Capture Tool

Windows offers several built-in screen capture tools, such as Snipping Tool and Print Screen. However, if you’re looking for more advanced options, you can also use third-party applications like ShareX or Greenshot.

Once you’ve chosen your preferred tool, open it up and select the type of capture you want to perform.

Step 3: Full Screen Capture

To perform a full screen capture, simply press the Print Screen button on your keyboard. This will save a screenshot of your entire screen to your clipboard.

Step 4: Window Capture

To perform a window capture, first, open the window you want to capture. Then, press Alt + Print Screen on your keyboard. This will save a screenshot of the active window to your clipboard.

Step 5: Custom Capture

To perform a custom capture, open your chosen screen capture tool and select the custom capture option. Then, click and drag your cursor over the area you want to capture. Once you’ve selected the area, release your mouse button to save the screenshot to your clipboard.

Step 6: Paste Your Screenshot

After you’ve captured your screen, the next step is to paste the screenshot into your desired location. This could be an email, document, or image editing program.

To paste your screenshot, open your chosen location and press Ctrl + V on your keyboard. This will paste the image from your clipboard into your document or program.

Step 7: Save Your Screenshot

If you want to save your screenshot as an image file, simply open your chosen image editing program and paste the screenshot using the steps described in Step 6. Once the screenshot is pasted, go to File > Save As and choose your desired file format (e.g., PNG, JPEG).

Step 8: Edit Your Screenshot

If you need to make any edits to your screenshot, such as adding text, arrows, or highlighting certain areas, you can do so using an image editing program like Microsoft Paint or Adobe Photoshop.

Simply open your screenshot in the image editing program and use the editing tools to make your desired changes.

Step 9: Share Your Screenshot

If you need to share your screenshot with someone else, you can do so by emailing it, uploading it to a cloud storage service like Google Drive or Dropbox, or sharing it via a messaging app like WhatsApp or Slack.

Step 10: Advanced Screen Capture Techniques

If you want to take your screen capture skills to the next level, you can try out some advanced techniques like using keyboard shortcuts to capture specific parts of your screen or recording your screen as a video.

Step 11: Troubleshooting Screen Capture Issues

If you encounter any issues with your screen capture tool, such as the captures not appearing in your clipboard, try restarting your computer or updating your screen capture tool.

Step 12: Experiment and Have Fun!

The best way to become an expert at screen capturing is to experiment with different tools and techniques and have fun along the way. Try out different tools and capture methods until you find the ones that work best for you.

Tips and Tricks

1. Use Keyboard Shortcuts for Quick Screen Capture

If you frequently need to capture your screen, it can save time to use keyboard shortcuts. For example, you can use Windows key + Print Screen to capture your entire screen, or Alt + Print Screen to capture only the active window.

2. Use Third-Party Screen Capture Tools for Advanced Features

If you need more advanced features like text recognition or video recording, consider using a third-party screen capture tool like Snagit or Camtasia.

3. Choose Your File Format Wisely

When saving your screenshots, choose a file format that suits your needs. For example, PNG is best for high-quality images, while JPEG is best for smaller file sizes.

4. Use Image Editing Tools to Improve Your Screenshots

Don’t be afraid to use image editing tools to improve your screenshots. You can easily add text, arrows, or other graphics to help highlight important information.

5. Learn Keyboard Shortcuts for Image Editing

If you frequently edit your screenshots, learning keyboard shortcuts for image editing tools can save you time. For example, in Microsoft Paint, Ctrl + Z will undo your last action, while Ctrl + Y will redo it.

6. Save Your Screenshots in a Safe Location

Make sure to save your screenshots in a safe and secure location, such as your computer’s internal hard drive or a cloud storage service like Google Drive or Dropbox.

7. Use Screen Capture for Troubleshooting

If you’re encountering an error message or other issue with your computer, taking a screenshot can help you troubleshoot the problem more effectively.

8. Consider Using Multiple Screens

If you frequently need to multitask or work with multiple applications at once, consider using multiple screens. This can make it easier to perform screen captures and improve your overall productivity.

9. Customize Your Screen Capture Tool Settings

Many screen capture tools offer custom settings such as image quality or file format. Take the time to explore these options and customize them to your needs.

10. Practice Makes Perfect!

The more you practice screen capturing, the better you’ll become! Don’t be afraid to experiment with different tools and techniques and try new things. With a little practice, you’ll be a screen capture pro in no time.

In conclusion, copying your screen on Windows is a valuable skill that can help you in many situations. By following the steps and tips outlined in this article, you’ll be able to capture your screen easily and confidently. So go ahead and try it out, and let us know in the comments how it goes!

Advantages and Disadvantages of How to Copy Screen on Windows


1. Easy to use: The Windows Snipping Tool and Print Screen option are very easy to use and do not require any additional software or skills.

2. Enhances productivity: Taking screenshots can enhance productivity by capturing important information or data that can be shared with others or used for reference later.

3. Helps in troubleshooting: Screenshots can be used to identify and troubleshoot errors or issues in software applications.

4. Saves time: Copying screens on Windows saves time by eliminating the need to manually type or copy information from one window to another.

5. Provides visual aids: Screenshots can be used as visual aids to improve presentations, reports, tutorials, and communications.

6. Versatile: Windows allows you to copy screens in various formats such as image files, email, and clipboard, making it versatile and easy to share.

7. No cost involved: Windows Snipping Tool and Print Screen option are free and do not require any additional cost or subscription.

8. Multiple applications can be open: Copying screens on windows allow you to open multiple applications and capture data from those applications.

9. Available on all Windows devices: Windows Snipping Tool and Print Screen option are available on all versions of Windows devices.

10. Provides a record: Screenshots serve as a record of activities performed on your computer, which can be useful for tracking and monitoring purposes.


1. Can be misused: Screenshots can be misused and shared with unauthorized persons, potentially compromising sensitive information.

2. Large files: Screenshots can create large files, which consume storage space on your device and may slow down your system.

3. Can be time-consuming: Copying multiple screens on Windows can be time-consuming and tedious when done frequently.

4. Limited flexibility: Screenshots are limited to capturing the content visible on your screen and cannot be used to capture data that requires scrolling.

5. Not always compatible: Screenshots may not be compatible with some software applications and may require additional formatting.

6. May distort measurements: Screenshots may distort measurements when capturing images that require precision.

7. Requires manual editing: Screenshots may require manual editing to remove unwanted content, which can be tedious.

8. No audio or video: Screenshots only capture visual content and do not include audio or video, which limits their use in some applications.

9. Cannot capture dynamic content: Screenshots may not be able to capture dynamic content that changes frequently.

10. Not suitable for all situations: Screenshots may not be suitable for all situations, such as confidential or sensitive information, where a more secure method of sharing is required.


1. How do I take a screenshot on Windows?

To take a screenshot on Windows, press the “Print Screen” (PrtScn) button on your keyboard. This will capture an image of your entire screen. To capture just one window, click on the window to make it active and then press “Alt + Print Screen”.

2. Where do my screenshots get saved?

When you take a screenshot on Windows, it gets copied to your clipboard. You can then paste it into an image editing program, such as Paint or Photoshop, and save it to your desired location.

3. How do I capture a specific portion of the screen?

Press the “Windows key + Shift + S” to bring up the Snipping Tool. This allows you to capture a specific portion of the screen and save it as an image.

4. Can I take a screenshot of a menu or dropdown?

Yes, you can use the “Snipping Tool” to capture a screenshot of menus or dropdowns.

5. How do I take a screenshot of just one window?

Click on the window to make it active and then press “Alt + Print Screen”. This will capture an image of just that window.

6. Can I take a screenshot of a video?

Yes, you can take a screenshot of a video by pausing it and then taking a screenshot using the methods mentioned previously.

7. What are some third-party tools I can use to take screenshots?

Some popular third-party tools for taking screenshots on Windows include Snagit, Greenshot, and Lightshot.

8. Can I take a screenshot on Windows using a Mac keyboard?

Yes, the “Print Screen” (PrtScn) button is usually located on the F14 key on a Mac keyboard.

9. How do I paste a screenshot into a document or email?

Open the document or email and place your cursor where you want to insert the screenshot. Press “Ctrl + V” to paste the screenshot into the document or email.

10. Can I take a screenshot while in a game?

Yes, you can take a screenshot while in a game using the same methods mentioned previously.

11. How do I take a screenshot using a tablet or touchscreen device?

Press the “Windows logo button + volume down button” at the same time to take a screenshot on a tablet or touchscreen device running Windows 10.

12. Can I take a screenshot of multiple screens?

Yes, you can take a screenshot of multiple screens by pressing “Windows key + Print Screen”. This will capture an image of all active displays.

13. How do I annotate or edit a screenshot?

You can use an image editing program, such as Paint or Photoshop, to annotate or edit your screenshot after it has been taken.

How to Copy Screen on Windows

Copying screen on Windows may come in handy when you want to share what’s on your screen with others or simply save it for later reference. Windows provides several methods for copying screen and it’s up to you to choose the one that suits your needs and preferences.

Conclusion and Closing

In conclusion, copying screen on Windows can be done through the use of keyboard shortcuts, Snipping Tool, or Print Screen. Each method has its advantages and disadvantages, and it’s important to choose the one that meets your needs. Whether you want a quick capture of your entire screen or a more precise one, Windows has got you covered.

Thank you for reading this article on how to copy screen on Windows. We hope you found it informative and helpful. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to share them below. Until next time, happy screen copying!