How to Take a Screenshot in Linux (Programs Required)

screenshotyi-v-linuxGood day to all!

At first glance, today’s question is quite simple, but at second glance, the task can become very complicated if you need a screenshot with certain conditions: for example, whether with arrows , registrations (automatically created, etc., etc.). Of course, I do not promise to take into account all the “subtleties” 100%, but I will try to consider the main thing… 😉

So … In general, if you have chosen and use one of the Linux distributions for beginners, creating a screenshot (screenshot) should not cause any difficulties. As a rule, it is sufficient to press the Print Screen key. However, in this way it is possible to capture far from everything (and not always)…

That is why in some cases you have to resort to additional installation. apps. What? Consider below… 👇


To note: Of course, the applications below are not a panacea. Screenshots can be used to create hundreds of other programs, and it is hardly possible to collect them all in one note…


The content of the article

Method 1: Via Desktop Environment

As mentioned above, in the vast majority of Linux distributions, to create a simple (without inscriptions, arrows, etc.) Screenshot not additional. no app needed! (this can be done through the desktop environment by pressing 1-2 buttons on the keyboard).

Which keys and combinations are commonly used:

  1. Screenshot – as a rule, after clicking on it, a screenshot of the whole screen is sent to a folder “home / pictures” (“/home/alex-ocomp/images”where instead of alex-ocomp – will be your username in the system);
  2. Alt + PrintScreen (Shift + Print Screen) – take a screenshot of the current window;
  3. Ctrl + Printscreen — manually specify the area to capture (/or copy the screenshot to the clipboard).
  4. Ctrl+Alt+Print Screen — manually select a window to create its snapshot (useful when several windows are open).

Depending on the software used, there may be other keyboard shortcuts (these are just the most common).

Where are the screenshots saved by default in Linux?

Where screenshots are saved by default in Linux (Zorin OS)


👉 Watch out!

Also note that many distros have pre-installed applications for creating screenshots (most often these can be found in the menu START / Charts). For example, there are in Deepin, Linux Mint, Ubuntu, etc.

Yes, usually these applications are very simple, but still…


Method 2: Use Special Programs

flame stroke

One of the simplest and most convenient programs for quickly creating screenshots! Allows to use its own editor to apply arrows, text to screenshots, blur areas, crop area to desired size, etc.

I would note its good compatibility with most distros and undemanding resources.

To install on Ubuntu (Mint, etc.), open a terminal and type:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install flameshot

Flameshot - Settings Window

Flameshot – Settings Window

To note: Keyboard shortcuts for working with Flameshot are configured in the program settings (Print Screen is not enabled by default!).



Kazam – this application is universal: it allows you to take screenshots and record videos with everything that happens on the screen (the sound of the speakers and the microphone too!).

In addition, in the settings you can select the desired area (or a specific window), set hotkeys and timer duration (before recording). This may be needed to save various drop-down lists.

To install the application on Ubuntu (and similar distributions):

sudo apt update
sudo apt install kazam

Kazam - program settings (+ 5 sec before capture)

Kazam – program settings (+ 5 sec before capture)



A fairly powerful program for creating and editing screenshots. You can add not only text (of different fonts) and arrows to the image, but also emoticons, highlights, blurs, numbers and much more…

Of course, the program supports hotkeys.

On facilities: available in the App Store on Linux Mint and Ubuntu.

A working example with Ksnip

A working example with Ksnip



To install it is possible from the official website:

Cross-platform application for full work with images (screenshots). Allows you to create and modify them. True, I immediately note that the editor here is simple: you can only crop the image, blur certain areas, add text or an arrow.

In general, for many works, this will be enough. In addition, the application can very easily and imperceptibly “live” in the tray until needed… 😉

Shotnes is a good screen capture software.

Shotnes is a good screen capture software.


Sample Questions

Is it possible to use screenshots for windows in linux

It depends on what… (some are unlikely to work normally).

However, nothing prevents you from trying! For example, the developers of LightShot even provide a small instruction on their website on how to “get” their app working on Linux.

👉 To help!

1) The best screenshots for Windows – my selection

2) How to use Wine – see the instructions (on the games example)

LightShot works under Ubuntu!  (for example)

LightShot works under Ubuntu! (for example)


How to capture a dropdown (or an app where the hotkey doesn’t work)

Yes, such “difficult” moments do happen. There are several solutions here:

  1. first: enable video recording of everything that happens on the screen (for example, via Kazam). Then this difficult moment will fall into the video. Well, by opening it in the player, you can take a picture of this place in the usual way. Fault: screen quality may be somewhat lower…;
  2. second: in some programs there is a timer before creating a screen (for example, in the same Kazam). By setting a timer, you can quickly open the desired list and then wait for the automation to “work”; 👌
  3. the third: there is a special peripherals for video capture (note: they get the same image that the video card sends to the monitor). With the help of them you can record everything that happens on the screen, an example is here;
  4. Fourth: Take a picture of the phone screen (although it’s not quite a screenshot and the quality may be low).


The image is just a black area, instead of a screenshot of the window

On Windows this is more common (in my opinion).

Anyway, I would recommend the following:

  1. first install another program to create a snapshot;
  2. try to capture not a specific window (area), but the whole screen;
  3. instead of a screen, you can make a video recording of the screen (screencast), and then “extract” the desired image from it.


Additions on the subject are welcome!

Good luck!


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Useful software:

  • video montage
  • Video montage

  • Excellent software to create your first videos (all steps are step by step!).
    The video will make even a beginner!

  • optimization utility
  • computing accelerator

  • A program for cleaning Windows from “garbage” (deletes temporary files, speeds up the system, optimizes the registry).

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