Take Screenshots with Windows 7 with the Snipping Tool

Microsoft continues to add new tools to help you take screenshots in Windows. Here’s a look at the Snipping Tool.

One of my favorite free tools, Microsoft, built into Windows 7 and Windows Vista, is the Snipping Tool. The Snipping tool essentially lets you take screenshots or “snips” of your screen, add limited annotations to the screenshot, then email or save the file so you can share it or store it for later.  Although not as powerful as a pro, paid tools like Snagit or the screenshot tool built into Office 2010, overall, the Snipping Tool does just fine if you’re only looking to capture screenshots vs. creating a screencast (video).

Although the tool has been around since the days of Windows Vista, I discovered we haven’t talked about it here on groovyPost yet, so I thought I’d take 10 minutes and give you a quick Screenshot Tour showing you where you can find it as well as a few of its features.

The Snipping Tool in Windows 10

Note: The Snipping Tool is also built into Windows 10. You can also get more advanced options for screenshots by using the Snip & Sketch Tool in Windows 10. To access the Snipping to in Windows 10, hit the Windows key and type: snipping tool. Or, you can also find it in the Accessories Folder. It then works virtually identical to what it did on Windows 7.

snipping tool windows 10

Windows 7 is No longer Supported

Microsoft ended support for Windows 7, and if you want the latest, greatest, and most secure OS for your PC, install Windows 10.

Where is the Windows 7 Snipping Tool?

You can find the Snipping tool by typing Snipping into the Windows 7 Search Box to get started.

Alternatively, you can also find it the old-fashioned way in the Start > All Programs menu.

Next, expand the Accessories Folder, and then click Snipping Tool.

Snipping Tool Features

If you click Options, you can change the way that the snips are taken. For example, the option to “show screen overlay” may be selected as an opaque layer covering your display until you take a snippet. Also, the color of the outlines may be changed to outline the area of the screenshot to make the area more visible.

To create a snip of a particular section on your computer, click the down arrow next to the New button. Four different options are available: Free-form Snip, Rectangular Snip, Window Snip, and Full-Screen Snip.

  1. Free-form snip allows you to draw what shape and size you want your snip to be.
  2. The rectangular snip creates a perfect rectangle of any size.
  3. A Window snip takes a snip of a highlighted window that is open (such as a webpage).
  4. A Full-screen snip creates a snip of the entire image on the computer. For these instructions, the rectangular snip has been chosen.

Pen Tool

The Snipping Tool has Pen features which you can use to draw on the SNIP / Screenshot you just took. The Pens come in a variety of colors which you can customize by clicking the customize button. There you can customize the Pen TIP type, line thickness, and color.

Once selected, draw away.

Eraser Tool

The eraser tool is useful if you make a mistake while drawing.

Share your screenshot – snip

If you use Outlook as your mail client, your snip can be sent through email using the Snipping Tool software.

The great thing about this tool is it’s free and straightforward to use once you know it exists.

Guest Contributor: Joanna Danek
Joanna is a groovyReader turned contributor with love for all things technology. Joanna specifically enjoys writing about Windows 7 and mobile technology, so don’t be surprised to see an article from Joanna pop on the site from time to time.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Ziggy

    October 21, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    Another screen capture tool is “DuckCapture”. Nifty, easy to use and it’s FREE! Do a Google search or follow this link:-


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