KDE tip - taking screenshots

In GNOME, it's really easy to take a screenshot of your system, you just hit Print Screen and a handy window pops up where you can save it.

For some reason, this functionality doesn't work with KDE out of the box, but that doesn't mean you can't take screenshots. There are many utilities that will allow you to take screenshots, but one that is built in to KDE is KSnapshot.

UPDATE: I've since been told that KDE does do this out of the box. Having only upgraded KDE and not done a new install for a few releases, it appears I was out of date! Still, this tip might come in handy for some people. I stand corrected!

You can invoke KSnapshot by going to the K menu and choosing Graphics > KSnapshot or pressing Alt-F2 and typing ksnapshot.

Screenshot of KSnapshot

It will take a screenshot when it opens and you can save it from there or copy it to the clipboard for editing. However, if you don't want the one it's just taken, you can adjust the settings in the dialogue and click New Snapshot to take another one (or if you want to use advanced options like single window capture).

If you want KSnapshot bound so that it opens immediately when you hit Print Screen (and you're running a recent version of KDE), right-click it in the K menu, choose Edit Item and then set the shortcut key under Current Shortcut Key to Print Screen, or your desired key combination.

Avatar for peter Peter Upfold - http://peter.upfold.org.uk/

Peter Upfold is a technology enthusiast from the UK. Peter’s interest in Linux stems back to 2003, when curiosity got the better of him and he began using SUSE 9.0. Now he runs Linux Mint 9 on the desktop, runs a CentOS-based web server from home for his personal website and dabbles in all sorts of technology things across the Windows, Mac and open source worlds.

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Discussion: KDE tip - taking screenshots

  1. wow (guest)

    # Posted on 09 May 2007 at 01:43 PM

    wow, i have no idea how u manged to install KDE WITHOUT "print screen" function??!?! im running on default fedora with kde and after reading this........


  2. Peter (guest)

    # Posted on 09 May 2007 at 01:50 PM


    I must confess I haven't actually installed KDE for a while, I've just upgraded the distro and took my KDE settings with me.

    I'm pretty sure KDE didn't use to bind Print Screen properly, maybe it does now. Still this tip may come in handy!

  3. wow2 (guest)

    # Posted on 09 May 2007 at 03:46 PM

    Use "KDE Control Center/Regional & Accessibilty/Keyboard shortcuts/Global Shortcuts/Window or Desktop screenshot" option dude, for configure your desktop!

  4. Strabes (guest)

    # Posted on 10 May 2007 at 06:28 PM

    KDE screen capture behaves out of the box like it does in windows. It copies the capture to your clipboard which you can then paste into gimp or another image manipulation program. You can use alt+printscreen to capture only the active window.

    The difference between KDE and gnome in this area is that gnome pops up a dialog asking where you'd like to save the capture and KDE doesn't.

  5. Michael (guest)

    # Posted on 25 August 2009 at 05:03 PM

    I just installed KDE from Ubuntu (getting Kubuntu out of it, of course) and the Print Screen key did nothing. As stated here, it worked in GNOME, then when I logged into KDE, it didn't work. I manually started up KSnapshot.

    Ubuntu 9.04 KDE 4.2.2 Both the latest version as of August 2009

    Thanks for the tip! It did help me.

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