Open Snipping Tool With The Print Screen Button

The print screen button is a very convenient way to get a screenshot of the screen. I use it all the time and I have others use it to send me a picture of their error messages. By default when you push the print screen key it takes a picture of all screens and saves it into memory. Then you can paste that into an e-mail. But I am moving to the Windows 10 snipping tool.

Snipping Tool Logo

The Problem

The problem is nowadays a lot of people have 2-3 or even 4 screens. So I’ll get these massive images that sometimes I can’t even fit on my screens. So I have to scroll around the image trying to find the part I want to see.

You can push the alt + print screen keys at the same time to get a screenshot of just the window in focus but sometimes you want a little bit more than that.

The Solution – Snipping Tool

At work, we are deploying a change to our computers that causes the print screen button to open up the Windows 10 Snipping Tool. This way our employees can easily highlight what they want a picture of. Instead of sending a picture that’s 7,680 x 1080 in size.

How to change the print screen keys function

Go to:

Settings -> Ease of Access -> Keyboard. (If you are already in some setting options you may have to hit the home button on the top left first.)

Then scroll down and look for “Print Screen shortcut

Set Print Screen Key to open Snipping Tool

Now when you push the print screen button it will open the snipping tool. You will see something like this on the top of your screen.

Snipping Tool

Just click and hold the mouse button then drag it to put a box around the thing you want to take a picture of.

Screen Snip Box

When you let go of the mouse that area will be saved into memory. Then you can paste it anywhere you want to. You will also notice a popup on the bottom right of your screen. If you click that it will give you some options to edit the image you just made.

Snip Saved

This opens a tool called “Snip & Sketch”. The options are kind of limited but you can circle or highlight what you want others to look at.

Snip & Sketch

Enable snipping tool option with the windows registry

I did not see a GOP option to set this but it can be set in the registry. So we are pushing out a registry change.

The registry keys can be found here:

Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Keyboard
Screen Snip Registry

Change “PrintScreenKeyForSnippingEnabled” to 1 to turn it on or to 0 to turn it off.

I hope this helps

That is all there is to it. Of course, if you like the old way you could just push windows key + shift + S to get the snipping tool instead of taking over the print screen button.

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