Save Screenshots to Different Folder Windows 11

, ,

If you’re like me and you take many screenshots, this article will show you how to capture, optimize and customize taking screenshots on a Windows 11 PC.

You may want to also read my article on restoring the default Documents folder location.


How to take Screenshots

Pressing the Win + Print Screen keyboard buttons will automatically capture and save a screenshot of your entire desktop into a folder called Screenshots under your Pictures folder located here: C:\Users\[YourUsername]\Pictures\Screenshots

You can also easily capture screenshots with the Print Screen (or abbreviated PrtScr) key which automatically opens the Snipping Tool app. Taking screenshots with either method automatically saves the captured screenshots to a default folder. However, the location of the default Screenshots folder is customizable. See the section within this article on how to change the default save location for screenshots.


How to use Print Screen key to take Screenshots

As of Windows 11 Update version 22H2 the ability to use the Print Screen key to open the Snipping Tool app to capture screenshots is toggled on by default. If it is not, follow the steps below to active this feature.

  1. Click on the Start menu, and select the Settings app.
  2. From the vertical menu on the left, select Accessibility then in the right pane select Keyboard.
  3. Scroll down and toggle on the option on for Use the Print screen button to open screen snipping.



How to Change Where Screenshots are Saved

To change where your screenshots are saved to you can choose to move the default save location for Print Screen snapshots using these steps:

  1. Go to your Pictures folder and located the Screenshots folder.
  2. Right mouse click on the Screenshots folder to select Properties from the drop down menu.
  3. Click on the Location tab and select the Move… button.
  4. Then choose a new folder location for the screenshots to be saved in and press the Select Folder button. Click Yes when asked to move all files in the Screenshots folder to the new location.
    • If you selected to move to a system folder you will see a second dialog box confirmation prompt. If you select Yes, you won’t be able to restore the original save location via the properties window without modifying the Windows registry. Only select Yes on that prompt if you’re sure you want your screenshots to save in the chosen folder from now on.
  5. Any screenshots captured with the Win + Print Screen keys will now be saved to this new folder.


How to Restore the Default Screenshots Folder

You can only restore the original Screenshots folder location from the properties windows of non-system subfolders. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Launch File Explorer and navigate to the new Screenshots folder you previously selected.
  2. Right-click the new Screenshots folder and select Properties.
  3. Then click on the Restore Default location button under the Location tab and click the Apply button.
  4. Click Yes to confirm the recreation of the original Screenshots folder.


How to Restore the Default Screenshots Folder via Windows Registry Editor

WARNING: Only use the Windows Registry Editor if you know what you are doing AND are willing to risk damaging your Windows system. As always, you should ensure you have a full, working backup of your PC before proceeding.

If you selected, by accident or otherwise, to move the default Screenshots folder to a system folder and want to undo this you’ll need to use the Windows Registry Editor app to do so. Navigate to the following Windows Registry location:

Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders

From here, you may notice that you have two (2) entries for %USERPROFILE%\Downloads, one is for your main Downloads folder the other is for your Screenshots folder. Find out which one is the screenshots folder by searching the Name in the registry. Then delete the one for the Screenshots folder which will restore where your screenshots where originally saved to, in C:\Users\[YourUsername]\Pictures\Screenshots

In my case (see image below) it was the entry named {B7BEDE81-DF94-4682-A7D8-57A52620B86F}. Just in the event that I was wrong, within the Registry Editor I went to File > Export and I then saved the entire User Shell Folder to my desktop as a backup.




I hope my article on how to capture, optimize and customize taking screenshots on Windows 11 has helped you. I welcome your thoughts, questions or suggestions regarding this article.

You may support my work and future improvements by sending me a tip using your Brave browser or by sending me a one time donation using your credit card.

Let me know if you found any errors within my article or if I may further assist you by answering any additional questions you may have.