There is an app that can do screenshots in MacOSX Lion, what's the name?

It comes from the OS, not a 3rd party app.


The built-in application is called Grab. You can find it under the Utilities folder in Applications.

You can also use keyboard shortcuts to take screen shots. Here's a quick guide from Apple:

In Mac OS X, you can use simple keyboard shortcuts to do all sorts of things, including capturing images of what’s on your Mac screen. For example, you can take a screen shot of your entire screen by holding down the Command and Shift keys and pressing a 3.

If you hold down the Command and Shift keys and press 4, Mac OS X turns the cursor into crosshairs you can use to select whatever portion of your display you’d like to capture in a screen shot.

If you immediately hit the Spacebar after typing Command-Shift-4, Mac OS X replaces those crosshairs with a little camera. Using the camera, you can take a screen shot of the Dock, the entire menu bar, a single open menu, the desktop, or any open window.

  • 4
    I've always used the keyboard shortcuts. I didn't know the application had a name. – Thorbjørn Ravn Andersen Dec 4 '11 at 9:43
  • IIRC Grab was the name of the app even back in NeXTSTEP days. – TJ Luoma Dec 8 '11 at 7:48
  • "simple keyboard shortcuts" is worded a bit ironic by Apple. I wonder how many non-power users can remember that combo... I know how to do it from muscle memory (because I use it a lot), but I wouldn't be able to write the combination down. – Rabarberski Dec 19 '11 at 15:36

You can also take screenshots with Preview via File -> Take Screen Shot. This gives you the following options:

  • From Selection...
  • From Window...
  • From Entire Screen

Each screenshot is captured in a separate Preview window so it is mostly useful to collect screenshots and process them afterwards.


I generally use the built-in screen grab utility. If you hold down the Control key in addition to the other keys (i.e. Command-Shift-4), the captured image will be sent to the clipboard rather than being saved as a file. I find this useful when I'm pasting the screen grab directly into a document.

Apple's documentation of this feature is available from the Help Menu. Search for Shortcuts for taking pictures of the screen

There are a number of third-party applications that offer various enhancements to the screen grabbing experience. For example if you plan to do a lot of post-production manipulation, Layers will save every element on the screen as a separate layer of a .psd document.

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