How to Print Screen in Boot Camp

Dec 19, 2011 - 4 Comments

Mac Keyboard

Macs don’t have a “Print Screen” button like their Windows PC keyboard counterparts, but taking screenshots from a Mac that is booted into Windows by way of Boot Camp is easy with a few keyboard shortcuts. The secret is remembering which keys to press, and beyond that the process of printing screen captures in Boot Camp is simple.

Let’s review the primary screen capture options for Boot Camp.

Using “Print Screen” in Boot Camp

The equivalent to pressing a Print Screen key in Windows running under Boot Camp on a Mac is pressing a keyboard combination instead of a single key. Here are the two methods key combos available to get the exact same capture effect:

  • Capture Full Screen: FN+Shift+F11
  • Capture Front Window: FN+Option+Shift+F11

Note that on some larger Apple keyboards Boot Camp maps F14 as the printscr button instead, allowing you to just hit F14 for the full screen or Option+F14 to grab a window. Also, some keyboards label the function key as “fn” and the option key as “alt”.

These keystrokes are mapped to the Windows Print Screen function, and the screenshot will be copied into the clipboard which can then be pasted for use elsewhere. It’s not quite as convenient as having the screen capture saved directly to the desktop, but that’s just the way it works in the Windows world.

Boot Camp

This is a nice tip from MacTrast, who notes that you can also tweak a setting in Windows to remove the necessity of hitting the function key if desired, which would make the keystroke slightly shorter (shift+f11), or if you have the full size Apple Keyboard, it may be simply F14.

If you use Boot Camp to run Windows on a Mac, you’ll almost certainly enjoy this trick for printing screen captures just like you would on a PC. Let us know in the comments if you know of another solution, or have any similar tips!

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Tips & Tricks

4 Comments

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  1. ARG says:

    Really Helpful THANK YOU!

  2. andrew says:

    “It’s not quite as convenient as having the screen capture saved directly to the desktop” – really!?!?

    NO ONE uses likes using keyboard and remember all kind of shortcuts for the most BASIC functions!

    One DELETE key, ONE insert key, ONE PRINT KEY!
    get a life macmoloz…

    • BBP says:

      Andrew, rather than insulting people using Mac, learn to read to topic…

      We are talking of a key used by a specific OS on a computer normally used to run another OS for which this key is not necessary. Following your logic, the Command key should not exist, because it is not supported in Windows.

  3. GSC says:

    This was working great for me but suddenly stopped. I cant get Fn+Shift+F11 to work anymore. What went wrong.

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