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How to do Screen Capture and use Image Hosting Sites

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The easiest way to show you the difference is with a couple of screenshots, both taken with exactly the same number of windows open on the screen:


Fullscreen: (press F11 to remove your real screen, and see the fullscreen image more clearly)




Active Window:




No matter how many windows are open, only one of them is "active" at any one time. Faststone captures that window, in this case CCleaner.


Hope that helps.

Thank you Dennis! I swear though I get the toolbars in Active mode with both Gadwin and FastStone. No big deal of course because I can just use "rectangle". This Active snapped with FastStone and it shows all of the browser as full screen would have.


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I can't get that image to open on xs.to. All I get is a dating ad. I could probably use it, but it's getting late. :D


I could be wrong, but it looks as though you only have one main window open there. If so, the full screen is the active window.


Open a few different windows with Windows Explorer, or open up a couple of programs, all at the same time.


Whichever one you click to make active will be picked out by Faststone.

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I don't see that screenshot either Dennis.


If you have quite a few windows open the active window is the one with the darkest coloured bar at the top. All the others look greyed out. (see screenshot)


I use ms paint, and to get just a screenshot of the active window I would just hold down the Alt button and press the PrtScn button once.



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Hi all,


I just don't know how to thanks you better! you guys are so informative! :rolleyes: I wish I got this post some times back. Maybe I should invite one or two for beer of coffee. I guess those who only take ice cream will also be invited :P

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Are links to photobucket prohibited? I just tried to link up to a photo there, couldn't do it, got a message saying the link was not permitted. Was an OK picture, I had just uploaded it myself, was a screenshot of macrium.

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Right login I have taken a screenshot of your post above and saved it as a jpg.


There are 2 ways I can post it for you, the first is to go to pixpipeline.com select choose, find my jpg, click upload image.

It then goes to another page which shows my screenshot. Underneath it is a dropdown box which says 'I WANT TO.... I choose 'hotlink a clickable thumbnail on a forum, then I copy and paste the code into my post. (no img tags or anything)




The second way is to make sure you select the 'more options' button when doing your post reply.


Then follow the steps in the screenshot below. It keeps it in house so to speak, no need for image hosting.


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If there are no images visible in this tutorial, please inform me via pm as soon as possible. Thanks.

Click to pm me:


Please note also that the "Image Speech" site is under maintenance, although the method of use is pretty much the same with the other sites listed further below.


Screen Capture:


There are a lot of free Screen Capture tools available, but IMO one of the better ones, and also freeware, is Faststone Capture. It's small GUI belies a very sophisticated program. It has a very good help file, and a very detailed tutorial which can be downloaded in PDF form.


Faststone Capture: (Last Freeware Version. Do not use the "Home" link.)




However, to get you started quickly, and save trawling through the help files, I'll outline the basic features.


Menu 1:




I have chosen to use the "To Editor" as my default. This means as soon as you capture the screenshot, it opens into the Faststone Editor, in which you can add "point to" arrows, descriptive text etc., as shown here:




Menu 2:




Here you can find links to the help file/tutorial, and an option to open any image on your PC straight into the Faststone Editor.


The next screenshot shows the different "capture" options available:




1: Capture the "active" window. (Link to definition/description of "active" window.)

2: Switch between all windows on the page.

3: Choose a capture window of any sized square or rectangle by left clicking once, drag the window to size, left click again.

4: Capture a freehand region by drag and multi-click.

5: Capture Full Screen.

6: Capture a "scrolling" window.


The PDF tutorial contains detailed explanations on each of these features, and is well worth consulting.


Please Note: Save your image as only JPG, PNG, or GIF, to save on file size and page loading. Not BMP.


Now that you've captured your image, you'll need to upload it to an Image Hosting site, and link to it by pasting a "Thumbnail Image" in your post.





Image Hosting:


For the purpose of storing, sharing, and posting Images, you'll find a lot of "Image Hosting Sites", or "Image/File" hosting sites on the Web. Some are free to use, some are commercial, and others are a combination of both.


The idea is to upload and store your image, and simply place a small thumbnail in your post that links to that image. The thumbnail is only a fraction of the size of the original, and therefore won't use up the forums bandwidth, and will make the topic you're posting in quicker to load.


These sites all have similar, but different conditions of use, and limitations on things like the maximum size you can upload, the maximum number of images you can store,(measured by either number or total size), or how long they will host your image before deleting it.


Some of these sites are very slick, with a nice clean interface, and a nice clean onsite image that the thumbnail links to.


Some are just the opposite. Sluggish to use: Site littered with ads: Site littered with distasteful ads: Images being lost: etc. etc. You can take note of which sites other people are using, or start a new topic and ask for some suggestions.


On the majority of these sites you can register for free, which enables you to keep track of your images, or even have an on site album.


Or, if you don't register, you can upload an image, link to it, and then you normally have no further contact with that image.


As an example I'll use the one I'm using at present called "ImageSpeech", which has great conditions of use, is very clean. And you can use it whether you register or not.




This screenshot is fairly indicitave of what a decent site looks like, although some are more cluttered.


You can click the image a second time to see it full sized. (Depends which browser you use)




All you would do here is press the browse/choose button which takes you to an upload window on your pc, choose an image, select it, and press upload. If you have a large digital image, it may take a while to upload.


Once uploaded, you should see something like this: (again, it varies from site to site.)




As you can see, there's a choice of "linking codes". What you look for is either Forum Code, or BB code, but usually the link starts with "".


Next, just simply right click anywhere in the link, it turns blue, and select COPY.


Come back to where you are typing your post, place the cursor on the start of the next line, right click and select PASTE.


You will now have a long line of text. To check that you have the correct linking code, go just below this window and select "Preview Post". In the preview window you should see your thumbnail. Click it, and it should take you to your hosted image.


Note that the Hosting Site automatically makes a thumbnail of your uploaded image.


That's it very basically, although you can play around with things, you can't do any harm, and if you get stuck, don't be afraid to ask.


Some other decent sites are:


PixPipeline: Nice clean site. Registration optional.


ImageBam: Nice interface, and again registration optional.


IMGBoot: Registration required, (email address). New "add title and description to image" feature. Clean site.


ImageCave: Registration required. Unlimited bandwidth. Clean site.


Image Ox: Registration Optional. Clean site with a lot of "gallery" features.



If any of you guys want to provide links to other good sites, I'm sure they'll be appreciated, or if you can add any relevant points I've omitted, please feel free.


Hope this helps.

Thanks DennisD for the information and recommendation to the software "Faststone" (easy to use) and the image hosting site Image Speech (down for maintenance but I was able to register and upload). :rolleyes:

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You're welcome Tasgandy


ImageSpeech has had the "maintenance" message up now for the best part of a year, and although the site is still alive and I can access all my stored images, I can't upload at all.

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DennisD I am using FastStone Capture on a daily basis now and find it much better and easier to use that my previous method (used for many years) as I create screen grabs for instruction manuals.


Having the ability to edit / watermark / caption etc. then drop into Adobe Acrobat or MS Word documents being created is excellent, so I wish to thank you once again and recommend this little gem to anyone that has other uses for screen capture software other than message board / posting use.


PS: it allows me to enjoy more of these images from my deck overlooking the river whilst enjoying some good wine and cheese.



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I use Picasa. Keep Picasa open and hit Printscreen. It captures and saves it in a folder as a .bmp file which can be "Saved As.." a .jpg file. Simple as that! And obviously, Picasa is great for editing.

Edited by ishan_rulz
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I use Picasa. Keep Picasa open and hit Printscreen. It captures and saves it in a folder as a .bmp file which can be "Saved As.." a .jpg file. Simple as that! And obviously, Picasa is great for editing.


That is more or less the same way as Printscreen and MS Paint works.

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That is more or less the same way as Printscreen and MS Paint works.


Yeah but in that, you would hit Printscreen, open MSPaint, Edit>Paste, then Save, etc.


Picasa just saves it as you press Printscreen and you can edit your capture as it opens on Picasa. :)

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I do take your point Ishan, however not everyone has Picasa installed.(It's a good app though)


I also like being able to use ms paint for the alt+printscreen option which only captures the active window, useful if you just want to show a popup or application error message.

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I had no idea about the Alt + Printscreen.


I just tried it. Works with Picasa as well.


Thanks for teaching me a new thing today! :D

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