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Where are screenshots saved on a Mac?

screenshots saved on a mac
Screened: find where those Mac screenies have gone

Taking a screenshot on your Mac is a piece of cake… finding where they’ve vanished to can be the tricky bit. If you’ve come from the Windows world, you might wonder why the screenshot isn’t captured in the clipboard and spend the next half hour searching through your files. When you find out where screenshots are saved on a Mac, you’ll kick yourself.

Where screenshots are saved on a Mac

By default, screenshots are saved to the desktop – yes, among all those program installers, documents and other bit of digital cruft you never get around to clearing out.

However, if you don’t want your screenshots to clutter your desktop, it’s dead easy to change the location they’re saved to.

First, take your screenshot – either by pressing Command + Shift + 5, or by using the dedicated button on the Touch Bar if you’ve bought a recent MacBook Pro.

When you do that, a small grey menu should appear in the bottom of the screen, which contains an Options menu. Clicking on that provides several different locations in which you can choose to save your screenshots, including Documents, the clipboard, your Mail app or others. Alternatively, you can choose your own destination folder by clicking Other Location.

If you’re comfortable using the Terminal on a Mac and you want to set a new default screenshots location, or even change the way screenshots are named, follow the advice from my colleague David Artiss here.

NOW READ THIS: How do I make Mac icons bigger?

About the author

Barry Collins

Barry has scribbled about tech for almost 20 years for The Sunday Times, PC Pro, WebUser, Which? and many others. He was once Deputy Editor of Mail Online and remains in therapy to this day. Email Barry at

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