Take Mac-style screenshots on your Linux computer. Pick the part of the screen you want a screenshot of and voila! You’ve got your exact selection, meaning you don’t need to edit an oversized picture. It’s called Deepin Screenshot tool, and it’s a shame Ubuntu and other Linux distributions don’t have it by default.
We review a lot of programs for taking screenshots, both here on the blog and in our directory. There seems to be a huge number of apps that automate the process of taking a screenshot and uploading it to the cloud, as though some sort of pent up demand for a service like this exists. Our plethora of screenshot articles reflects a built-in bias, of course. Tech bloggers spend a good chunk of their day taking screenshots, so naturally any tool that makes taking them easier gets our attention.
Occasionally, however, a screenshot app comes along that is actually useful. Which brings us to the Deepin Screenshot tool. With it you can take a screenshot of a single window or, if you prefer, manually select any part of the screen you want a shot of. Even better, this tool will tell you the size of the screenshot you’re taking as you take it, perfect for anyone who needs an image to be a particular size (for example, 590 pixels wide if you happen to work for MakeUseOf).
Using Deepin Screenshot Tool
Start the program and you’ll be able to select windows immediately. If you want a screenshot of a single window all you need to do is click.
Alternatively, you can select any region of the screen and take your screenshot. Just click the corner from which you want to start, hold the mouse button and let go when you’ve made your selection. You’ll even see the exact dimensions as you go:
This emulates the default screenshot tool on a Mac (hint for OSX users who don’t know what I’m talking about – press Apple key, Shift and F4 all at once. You’re welcome).
Once you’ve made your selection you can edit the screenshot, to a certain extent. You can even do basic drawing or add text.
When you’ve happy with your work click the “Save” button. You can pick where the file goes and what you’d like to name it. I could do without this extra step, but some will no doubt like it.
Why is this better than the default screenshot tools Linux comes with? It’s up to you, but I really love being able to select the exact area of my screenshot: it saves me the time of editing later. Speaking of which, here’s the screenshot I took
Not bad, eh?
Don’t ask how I took screenshots of a Linux screenshot tool: it’s a trade secret.
Download Deepin Screenshot Tool
Ubuntu users can download Deepin Screenshot Tool directly from Deepin’s repositories (Ubuntu 11.04 and higher only). Arch users can download Deepin Screenshot tool here. Everyone else can download the source code on GitHub. Thanks to Webupd8 for the download links, and introducing me to this software in the first place.
Once you’ve installed the software you can run it from the command line; the command is
deepin-scrot. If this is too much of a hassle, don’t worry: you can set up a keyboard shortcut with this command using the “Keyboard” section in the settings panel.
The Chinese team behind Linux Deepin bring a lot to the table. The Deepin Software Center is a great example of an app store for Linux done right, and this screenshot tool is something Linux should have had years ago. OSX certainly has.
Is this tool useful for you? Let me know in the comments below, and also feel free to point out any other great Deepin Linux features I should be reviewing.
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