30 August 2009 Tips 16 Comments

Screenshots get a nice touch in Snow Leopard

Screenshots get a nice touch in Snow Leopard

I am a big fan of Mac OS’s built-in screen capture tool. I use it almost every day to to share screen shots with friends or clients. What’s particularly great about it is its ease of use and the flexibility of its keyboard shortcuts

In Leopard, when a screenshot was taken, it was saved to the desktop with a very basic and somewhat useless filename: Picture 1.png, Picture 2.png… This makes it tricky when trying to figure out what screen shot you’re looking for.

Certainly not one of the keystone features in Snow Leopard, the screen capture utility now gives files more intuitive filenames with the date and time at which the shot was taken: Screen shot 2009-08-30 at 11.55.45 AM.png for example.

Snow Leopard's screen capture utility is now smarter in naming its files

Let’s recap the different keyboard shortcuts for taking screenshots in Snow Leopard:

  • ⌘+Shift+3 – Takes full screen shot and saves it to the desktop
  • ⌘+Shift+4 – Allows you to capture a selection of your screen and saves it to the desktop
  • ⌘+Shift+4 and tap the space bar – Allows you to capture an application window and saves it to the desktop

With any of these keyboard shortcuts, add the Control key and the screenshot is copied to the clipboard.

  • http://www.mossprojects.co.nz Ben Druce

    I’m running a MB Pro with Cinema Display. I am experiencing an issue with the ‘application window screen-shot’ where the image is being cropped considerably. I am also experiencing this on my laptop monitor. This has never happened previously with Leopard. Any tips?

  • NYinker

    Yeah, but that sucks. Some advice on how to change that back? please ;)

  • Laura

    Agreed!! I'm not at all a fan of this feature. Why would you want a gazillion-character name when you can only see the first bit? I can never recall image names now, nor can I distinguish images at a glance.

    Are there screenshot nomenclature options, or an option to restore to “Picture X?”

  • i1pro

    The new naming convention really sucks… What I see is only ScreenShot 2009-1..PM I have no idea which one was first or anything.. I HATE THE NEW NAMING CONVENTION… What am I doing wrong??

  • i1pro

    The new naming convention really sucks… What I see is only ScreenShot 2009-1..PM I have no idea which one was first or anything.. I HATE THE NEW NAMING CONVENTION… What am I doing wrong??

  • Pingback: TIP: Change default screen shot filenames, format and location | Snow Leopard Tips

  • indee

    The new naming system SUCKS because, although the date and time are on the file name, the file name is so long the whole thing can't possibly show under the icon.
    HATE it HATE it annoying.

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  • Ed

    I just upgraded to snow leopard 10.6.4 from 10.5.8 and now I can't take screenshots any more besides other issues like the spotlight icon is gone, etc.

    Any ideas about what could be the problem?

    Thanks,
    Ed

  • Scott

    I agree with those who hate the new screenshot naming idea. Very PC. Sux. Whoever came up with that idea made a really bad career decision. But worse.. the screenshots i take now have a completely different gamma! I could lose weeks of work. So far I truly hate snow leopard.

  • Guitarift

    I don't have any problem with it. If I want to rename it I just hit the enter/return key and type in a better, shorter name. It's very descriptive and I think that makes for a good user experience.

  • Lance

    this rocks! windoze sucks

  • F_tonmoy

    I am using Snow Leopard Mac OSX 10.6.2. none of the following three tricks

    ⌘+Shift+3 – Takes full screen shot and saves it to the desktop
    ⌘+Shift+4 – Allows you to capture a selection of your screen and saves it to the desktop
    ⌘+Shift+4 and tap the space bar – Allows you to capture an application window and saves it to the desktop

    works for me. that is no image saving, also no error message. please give me a
    suggestion.

  • Lex

    Launch System Preferences, go to Keyboard, select the Keyboard Shortcuts tab. Select ScreenShots and see if the radio buttons are checked.

  • F_tonmoy

    Keyboard Shortcuts was selected for screen shots tag. i am using virtual box. and i am using windows 7 as host.

  • Lex

    Dude, that's a whole other vibe. There was nothing ever mentioned anything about Virtual Box or using Win7 as a host while trying to use macros that specific to Snow Leopard. So, to say “the following three tricks don't work for you” without informing us of that detail, well there is no way to tell where the conflict is. The above instructions I contributed are for Mac user using a Mac with Snow Leopard.

    The only thing that I could think of is that the Command Key on the Mac, in most cases, is the equivalent of the Control key on a PC. You could attempt to fire it up that way. That is to ask. How are you addressing other Mac based commands in your set up? Unless you're using an actual Mac keyboard? I have no real way of knowing. Although, if you're using a PC keyboard, maybe you can find a way to make the Windows key operate in the Command key like fashion. There are three layers of stuff going on here, and since it should work, then it could be mere setting up of your preferences. Since I am not using your setup, I can't give you any solid advice.