How to Snip on Windows: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Snip on Windows: A Step-by-Step Guide


Snipping on Windows is a useful feature that allows you to capture screenshots of specific areas on your screen. Whether you want to save an important piece of information, highlight a particular section in a document, or share interesting content with others, snipping makes it easier and more efficient. In this step-by-step guide, we will walk you through the process of snipping on Windows and explore different methods to capture screenshots.

Step 1: Opening the Snipping Tool

The first step in snipping on Windows is to open the Snipping Tool. This tool is pre-installed on most Windows versions and can be accessed by typing “Snipping Tool” in the search bar. Once you see the tool in the search results, click on it to open.

Step 2: Selecting the Snipping Type

After opening the Snipping Tool, you will notice a drop-down menu next to the “New” button. This menu allows you to choose the type of snip you want to perform. There are four options available:

  1. Free-form Snip: This option allows you to draw irregular shapes around the area you want to capture.
  2. Rectangular Snip: This option enables you to capture a specific rectangular area on your screen.
  3. Window Snip: With this option, you can select an entire window, including the frame and contents.
  4. Full-screen Snip: This option captures the entire screen, including all open windows and applications.

Choose the snipping type that best suits your needs by clicking on it in the drop-down menu.

Step 3: Snipping the Area

Once you have selected the snipping type, the Snipping Tool will freeze your screen, allowing you to select the desired area. For free-form and rectangular snips, click and drag your cursor to create a shape around the desired area. For window and full-screen snips, click on the window or screen you want to capture.

Step 4: Annotating and Saving

After you have captured the desired area, the Snipping Tool will open an editing window. In this window, you can annotate the snip by adding text, drawing shapes, or highlighting specific areas. To save the snip, click on the floppy disk icon in the toolbar and choose a location on your computer to save the image.

Alternative Methods for Snipping

While the Snipping Tool is a handy built-in application, Windows also offers alternative methods for snipping. These methods provide additional features and flexibility in capturing screenshots:

  1. Snip & Sketch: This newer tool, available on Windows 10, allows you to capture and annotate screenshots directly. You can access it by pressing the Windows key + Shift + S or by searching for “Snip & Sketch” in the search bar.
  2. Print Screen: Pressing the Print Screen (PrtScn) key on your keyboard captures a screenshot of the entire screen. You can paste it into image editing software or directly into applications like Microsoft Word.
  3. Windows Key + Print Screen: This shortcut captures a screenshot of the entire screen and saves it automatically in the “Screenshots” folder in the “Pictures” directory on your computer.


Snipping on Windows is a simple and efficient way to capture and share screenshots of specific areas on your screen. Whether you use the built-in Snipping Tool or explore alternative methods, mastering the art of snipping will significantly enhance your productivity. So the next time you need to capture important information or share interesting content, remember these step-by-step instructions and become a snipping pro on Windows!


1. What is the snipping tool in Windows?

The snipping tool in Windows is a built-in screenshot utility that allows you to capture and annotate screenshots.

2. How do I open the snipping tool?

To open the snipping tool, go to the Start menu, type “snipping tool” in the search bar, and click on the snipping tool app.

3. What are the different types of snips available in the snipping tool?

The snipping tool offers four types of snips: free-form, rectangular, window, and full-screen.

4. How do I capture a free-form snip?

To capture a free-form snip, open the snipping tool, click on “New,” and then drag the cursor around the area you want to capture.

5. Can I capture a screenshot of a specific window using the snipping tool?

Yes, you can. Use the “Window Snip” option in the snipping tool to capture a screenshot of a specific window.

6. How do I save a snip after capturing it?

After capturing a snip, click on the “Save Snip” button in the snipping tool’s toolbar, choose a location on your computer, and save the snip.

7. Can I edit the snips after capturing them?

Yes, you can. The snipping tool provides basic editing features like highlighting, pen, and eraser to annotate and mark up your snips.

8. Are there any keyboard shortcuts available for using the snipping tool?

Yes, there are. The keyboard shortcut “Ctrl + Shift + S” can be used to open the snipping tool directly.

9. How do I share a snip with others?

After capturing and saving a snip, you can share it by clicking on the “Send Snip” button in the snipping tool’s toolbar and choosing an appropriate sharing option.

10. Can I change the default settings of the snipping tool?

No, the snipping tool does not offer extensive customization options. However, you can change the default folder location for saving snips in the tool’s options menu.