Taking Screenshots with Snipping Tool

Sometimes, you may want to take a picture of a specific portion of your screen rather than all of it. This can be useful when you need to send a picture of an error message, webpage, or application. Windows and Mac both have built in features which allow you to accomplish this.

Intended Audience

This article is intended for Students, Faculty and Staff who would like to take screen shots of all, or a portion of their computer screen. Sometimes it may be useful to take a screenshot of a portion of your screen, for example, if you needed to send a picture of an error message to an ITS Technician.


To follow this article you will need a Windows or Mac computer.

Using Snipping Tool With Windows 10

1. Navigate to the windows task bar at the bottom of the screen and type "Snipping Tool" into the search box.

2. Click on the Snipping Tool application.

3. The Snipping Tool will now be on your screen

4. Before taking a screenshot, a few options are available.

  • The mode tab will allow you to select how the screenshot is taken. "Rectangular Snip" will allow you to take a screenshot of a rectangular portion of the screen. "Free Form Snip" will allow you to "draw" a region for a screenshot to be taken in. "Window Snip" and "Full Screen Snip" will take a screenshot of a particular window, or the entire screen respectively.
  • The "Delay" tab will allow you to place a delay before the screenshot is taken, similar to the timer feature on a digital camera.
  • The "Options" tab has numerous other options, such as if the screenshot should be saved to your clipboard automatically.

5. Once you have configured the settings, you can press the "new" button to create a new screenshot. Snipping tool will freeze your computer screen and the colors will fade.
6. If you selected rectangular snip, or free form snip, you can now click and drag the cursor to select the portion of the screen you would like to snip. If you selected window snip, you can click on the window you would like to snip.

7. After taking your screenshot, the snipping tool window will reopen with a few extra options.

  • The floppy disk icon will let you save your snip to your computer.
  • The copy icon will save the clip to your clipboard, which you can then paste to other applications.
  • The pen, highlighter, and eraser tool allow you to add annotations and highlights to your clips.


Taking Snips on MacOS

1. Make sure the window or application you want to capture is on screen.

2. Use the shortcut "Shift + Command + 4" to begin taking your screenshot.
     - Alternatively you can use "Shift + Command + 4 + Space" to take a screen shot of a specific window.

3. Your cursor should now be a crosshair icon, click and drag over the region you would like to take a screenshot of. When you have selected the region you want, release your mouse button, or trackpad.

4. A thumbnail should appear in the bottom corner of your screen, you can click this to edit your screenshot. Alternatively, you can open the screenshot by finding the file on your desktop. By default, MacOS saves screenshots to the desktop.


If you have any questions or experience any issues with this article or would like more assistance with these applications, please visit or contact the ITS Helpdesk for assistance.


Location: 206 Murchie Science Building

Hours: go.umflint.edu/hours

Phone: (810) 762-3123

Email: flint.its.support@umich.edu


Article ID: 9785
Fri 3/3/23 1:48 PM
Tue 8/15/23 2:54 PM