Right now they default to desktop, and I followed instructions found here. It works up until I shut down the computer; I was wondering if there was a permanent solution?

  • I use Tinker Tool to change the screenshot location to a folder called "Screenshots" inside the Pictures folder. It's free. It only works with macOS Sierra.
    – TMHahn
    Oct 23, 2016 at 2:00
  • What location did you change it to? Oct 23, 2016 at 2:41
  • Run the Terminal command as a startup item. Oct 23, 2016 at 3:54
  • 1
    Any defaults write command should be permanent, whether done from Terminal, Tinker Tool, Onyx etc they all actually implement the same command. Try this in Terminal defaults read com.apple.screencapture location before & after a reboot & let us know the result[s].
    – Tetsujin
    Oct 23, 2016 at 8:23
  • 4
    Does this answer your question? How do I change the location of macOS screen captures?
    – pkamb
    Apr 24, 2020 at 21:57

3 Answers 3


Terminal command to change screenshot save location:

defaults write com.apple.screencapture location "/path/to/new/location"

Put your desired screenshot path between the double quotes as it is required if any spaces exist in the location path! Locations without a space will still be executed properly.

Example path with a space in new path:

defaults write com.apple.screencapture location "/Users/YourUserHomeFolder/Pictures/Screen Shots"

So no one is confused, the ~ character is a shortcut character symbol for your user's home folder. Other answers/sites might use this symbol.


defaults write com.apple.screencapture location "~/Pictures/Screen Shots"

The above defaults command will change the location screenshots are saved. The only problem is the path location must always be available or else it'll default back to the Desktop.

Example scenario: If you set the path to a removable volume such as a flash drive at /Volume/USBFlashDrive and remove it, or the location for some reason becomes unavailable from perhaps deleting, it'll revert back to its default location.

The only thing you'll need to change is the /path/to/new/location. This can be found from Finder by right clicking on your chosen folder. Then, after the context menu appears, hold the option key to change Copy "..." to Copy "..." as Pathname, so you can paste it into Terminal as the replacement for the example path provided above.

  1. First of all you should make new folder somewhere on your Mac. for example: Screenshots folder on Desktop.

  2. Open the Terminal application on your Mac. Copy and paste this command to the Terminal window and press Enter:

    defaults write com.apple.screencapture location ~/Desktop/screenshots/

    (However, If you wish to save screenshots in downloads folder the path looks this way: ~/Downloads/screenshots)

  3. Then paste this command to save changes and Press enter see immediate effect.

    killall SystemUIServer
  4. Now use Cmd + Shift + 3 (eventually 4) shortcut, you will see your screenshots are saved in your new location.


Found this tutorial from Google.com

By that, just create a new folder somewhere else where you want to store screenshot. For example, Desktop -> Screenshots

Then perform this command in Terminal.

defaults write com.apple.screencapture location /Users/username/Desktop/Screenshots
  • 1
    How does this answer differ from the previous accepted one? Nov 23, 2016 at 13:48

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