Microsoft to Change Functionality of Print Screen Button to Just Open The Snipping Tool

Posted on Wednesday, Apr 26, 2023 by Chris Hayner

Featured in this episode of Chaos Lever

Following the famous tech adage of “if it ain’t broke, lets go ahead and fix it,” Microsoft’s latest preview release of Windows 11 is changing the 25-odd year history of the functionality of hitting print screen.

In the olden days, hitting that weird button-that-nobody-knows-why-its-there-in-the-first-place (PrtSc) would take a screenshot of the full screen and put it on the clipboard. Next Windows release this could be changed to simply bringing up the Snipping Tool window.

Now, to be fair, I haven’t used this new mapping yet, and it’s definitely true that Microsoft has historically been terrible at the game of taking screenshots, which is why for at least 20 years the way to get good screenshots has always been “install program X instead.” Popular enough that I guarantee everyone listening is thinking of at least one program they’ve recommended at some point. (Ed- And be honest, it’s SnipIt)

Now, the Snipping Tool has gotten decent over the past few releases, and I’m sure nobody knows it’s there, or its full potential. So this keymapping change could be a positive. But based on the fact that it’s different has made the internet decide that it’s a negative.