Snipping Tool- A complete Guide for Mac and Windows

If you have a habit of taking a screenshot every now and then on your smartphones, well you will need a good tool for your laptops as well. In both Windows and Mac operating systems, you will get the preinstalled snipping tool to take screenshots, edit, and annotate it as required.

So, in this blog, we will be discussing everything about the snipping tool for mac and snipping tools for windows. Well, a typical snipping tool has been defined as a tool that is used to take screenshots and even edit them. Let us also look at many alternative options as well for Mac OS which have much better functionalities and then you can decide on your own.

Let’s get started!

What is a Snipping Tool?

The snipping tool is a utility available in both Windows and Mac operating systems to take screenshots of your desktop or any other application running on it. These screenshots can be taken as per your need and edited with the built-in tool. Well, you may not find the screenshot tool in Mac with the same name as in Windows. But you can easily access the built-in tool having similar features.

It surely isn’t anything like Photoshop or a photo editing tool but works just fine for basic purposes and helps you to take screenshots for images, desktops, documents, or anything on your screen. The tool saves the snips in JPG, GIF, or PNG format.

Snipping Tool for Windows

Snipping Tool for Windows 10

We will cover the section on how to use take screenshots in Windows 10 and how to use the snipping tool. Well, it isn’t too difficult and so make sure you understand everything mentioned here and read carefully.

How to open the Snipping tool in Windows Operating System

Well, there are basically three versions we will talk about. They are very simple methods to open the snipping tool that would help you take screenshots.

For Windows 10

Snipping Tool for Windows Open

  1. Select the Start button.
  2. Type Snipping Tool in the search box on the taskbar.
  3. Now select the Snipping Tool from the list of results to launch it.

For Windows 8/8.1

  1. Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, tap Search.
  2. Type the snipping tool in the search box. 
  3. Now, select the Snipping Tool from the list of results.

For Windows 7

  1. Select the Start button.
  2. Type Snipping Tool in the search box on the taskbar.
  3. Now select the Snipping Tool from the list of results to launch it.

Well, this is all you need to do to get started. Now, before we get to taking screenshots there are multiple terms that need attention on Snipping Tool.

How to get started with Snipping Tool in Windows 10

If you have been using Windows 7 or 8 you may not find the same features of the snipping tool as in Windows 10 since the design has been upgraded. Let’s see how we can get started with the snipping tool.

1. Capture a Snip

Snipping Tool Mode

The snipping tool in Windows has five menu options on the top of the application. You can click on Mode to understand which kind of screenshot you want to take. Here is the list of those options in Mode. 

Free-form snip Draw a free-form shape around an object.
Rectangular snip Drag the cursor around an object to form a rectangle.
Window snip Select a window, such as a dialog box, that you want to capture.
Full-screen Snip Capture the entire screen.

Once you have selected the mode, click on New to take a screenshot. All these options were available on the New section but now has been upgraded to a different section altogether in Windows 10.

2. Snipping Tool Options

In the menu box, to change the desired setting, you can to go Settings and uncheck the box which is not required.

Tool Options

For Example, if you want to remove the URL from the screenshot of the browser window or any description, simply uncheck the box that says “Hide Instruction Set” and “Include URL below snips (HTML only)”.

Also, there are certainly other options as well, which you can check or uncheck according to whichever suits you better. The selection ink option below helps to highlight the selected area while taking a screenshot, you can change the color of that too from the options.

3. Accessing the Delay Feature

Windows 10 has been upgraded with a new delay feature in the snipping tool provided by Microsoft. The process is very simple to understand. This Delay feature allows you to capture a drop-down menu or any other menu option that is needed.

Delay Feature

In Snipping Tool, select Delay and then select, for example, 5 seconds. Select Mode to start the 5-second countdown. Within 5 seconds, open a menu or otherwise compose your image. At 5 seconds, when you see the screen turn gray, use the mouse to draw around the area you want.

4. Editing the Snip

So, once you captured the screenshot you can edit it from the snipping tool itself. There are many options you can try out. 

Snipping Tool Edit

  1. Use a pen or highlight to draw on it.
  2. Use the Save option to save on your system.
  3. Erase the content using the eraser on the top left corner.
  4. Copy the image and save it on the clipboard.
  5. Or email the screenshot using the mail option on the menu bar.
  6. Annotate or add notes to the image.

All the options are available right on your screen once you have taken the screenshot. Once you are done editing.

5. Keyboard Shortcuts for Snipping Tool

Also, there are some prominent shortcuts that you can try out if you do not wish to simply open the tool again and again. They are super easy to use and learn. 

Press these keys To do this
Alt + M Choose a snipping mode.
Alt + N Create a new snip in the same mode as the last one.
Shift + arrow keys Move the cursor to select from different types of snips.
Alt + D Delay capture by 1-5 seconds
Ctrl + C Copy the snip to the clipboard
Ctrl + S Save the snip

Snipping Tool for Mac

Mac Operating System does have a Snipping Tool. Though many people are still not aware of it since it has not been given the same name, but it does exist. It is called Grab (Mac OS 10.13 and below) or Screenshot (10.14 and higher)  and it comes preinstalled in the Mac operating system. 

Snipping Tool for Mac

Furthermore, there are certain keyboard shortcuts that directly allow you to take a screenshot on Mac. Once you have taken a snip, open the image and edit it as needed. Let’s get down to it.

How to get started with Snipping Tool in Mac OS

We are going to learn “how to take screenshots on Mac?”. It is pretty simple actually. Moreover, all you need to do is memorize certain keyboard combinations to carry out this process or you can use the Screenshot tool on Mac for the same.

Take a screenshot using Snipping Tool on Mac

You can take screenshots on Mac or record screens using the Screenshot utility app which you can easily launch using the methods above. Once you open the tool, it looks like given below with multiple options to choose from.

  1. Opening the tool– Simply press Command + Shift + 5 or you can simply press Command +Space on your keyboard and type Grab or screenshot. The first option named Screenshot will be your tool.
  2. Capturing Options– Click on any of the tools that will allow you to either take screenshots or record screens as needed. The options are given below as follows.Screenshot Utility in Mac
  3. Capturing a Screenshot– You can choose from either of the first three options.Snipping Tool for Mac Delay
  • To Capture the Entire Screen- It will allow capturing the entire screen on your desktop.
  • Capture a Windows- For a particular window click on the second option.
  • To Capture a portion of the screen- once you click on it, you can easily select a certain area and capture the screen by clicking on the screen.
  • Delay Capture – You can also use the delay feature from the options to capture screenshots after few seconds.

Editing the Screenshot

Once you have captured the screenshot, simply click on it to edit the necessary changes needed. The tools that are provided for editing are as follows.

Tools Descriptions
Sketch Sketch a shape with a single stroke using the tool.
Shapes Go to the shape icon, and click on any shape to get on the screen.
Text Click on the Text icon to bring a text to enter content.
Highlight Section To highlight the selected Text
Sign To create signatures
Shape Style Change the thickness and type of lines used in a shape, and add a shadow.
Border and Fill Color Changes the color of the line and the color used in the shape respectively
Text Style A Change the font or the font style and color.
Rotate Left or Rotate Right To rotate the image.
Crop Hide the part of the image that is not needed

Once you are done with editing, simply press the Esc button on the keyboard and press Save to save the changes.

Take Snips using the Keyboard Shortcuts

Also, you can use the keyboard shortcuts on your Mac to take screenshots similar to the built-in application. Here are the shortcuts below.

  1. Shift + Command +3 – Capture the entire screen
  2. Press Shift + Command +4 – Capture a portion of the screen
  3. Shift + Command +4 + Space Bar – Capture a window or the menu bar
  4. Press Shift + Command 5 – Open Screenshot Utility on Mac

Additionally, once you are done taking a screenshot, you can simply edit them in the same manner as mentioned above.


Well, this is everything you need to know about the snipping tool for Windows and Mac. You can easily capture your screens and even record them using the in-built too in the Mac operating system. I am well aware that many of you were not even aware that Mac’s screenshot tool was known as Grab in the earlier versions and now it is called simply a Screenshot

If you are having trouble operating these tools both in Mac and Windows, do let us know in the comment section. We will assist you in the best way possible. Furthermore, there are some alternate tools as well available instead of the snipping tool, which we would let you know in the next section. Till then have fun with this.

Moreover, for more information on Robocopy Command by Microsoft, click here.


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