Mac OS X - Screen Captures, Screen Shots

There are several ways to make a Screen Shot or Screen Capture in Mac OS X.


Grab is an OS X application that allows you to capture a Selection, Window, Screen, or Timed Screen. After captured, you can Save or Print the image.

Keyboard Commands

  • Command-Shift-3: The entire contents of the screen will be captured into a file named “Picture 1” and saved as a PDF file on the desktop.
  • Command-Shift-4: The cursor will turn into a target thing, which you can use to drag a rectangle over the area of the screen you’d like to capture. File will be saved as above.
  • Add the Control key to either of the above commands and the image will be saved to the Clipboard for immediate pasting into programs.
  • Command-Shift-4, then Space Bar: Click on any object on the screen (Menu, Window, Dock, etc) and the image will be saved as a PDF on the Desktop.
  • Command-Shift-4, then Space Bar: Hold down Control and Click on any object on the screen. The image will be copied to the Clipboard rather than a PDF so that it can be pasted into another program.