I can see how to use Gimp to crop part of an image in a image file, but I want to crop a portion of the screen. How do you do that?


14 Answers 14


On Gnome Shell (17.10+)

To use the built-in gnome-screenshot capability (by default):

  • Ctrl+PrintScreen to copy a screenshot of the whole desktop.

  • Ctrl+Alt+PrintScreen to copy a screenshot of the current active window.

  • Ctrl+Shift+PrintScreen to copy a screenshot of an area you select with your mouse.

  • PrintScreen to save a screenshot of the whole desktop at /home/user/Pictures.

  • Alt+PrintScreen to save a screenshot of the current active window at /home/user/Pictures.

  • Shift+PrintScreen to save a screenshot of an area you select with your mouse at /home/user/Pictures.


On Unity

To use the built-in Screenshot capability:

  • PrintScreen to copy a screenshot of the whole desktop.
  • Alt+PrintScreen to copy a screenshot of the current active window.
  • Shift+PrintScreen to copy a screenshot of an area you select with your mouse.
  • 9
    Where is this cropped portion getting saved? Or if it's just on my clipboard, how do I save it? Feb 19, 2020 at 6:51
  • For me, the screenshot was copied to the clipboard and I was able to paste it into the chat where I needed it without any problems. Alternatively, you could create a new Google Docs file and paste the screenshot there. Then you can download it as a PDF for example.
    – gignu
    Feb 1, 2022 at 11:49
  • Nowadays this still working Jun 6, 2022 at 2:01

Applications > Accessories > Take Screenshot... Select area to grab.

Take Screenshot option in Accessories in Applications menu

  • 2
    Thank you for answering my basic question. I would have expected this to be in the "Graphics" menu with other image manipulations tools. Dec 26, 2010 at 9:44

Method 1:

  • Go to Applications > Accessories > Take Screenshot

    Take Screenshot dialog

  • Now you can select the portion of a screen.

Method 2:

Update: Shutter got removed from Debian/*Ubuntu repos because it uses deprecated Perl modules.

  • If you use shutter, Applications > Accessories > Shutter

  • Open it and click selection in the top of the screen.

    Selection option in top left of window

  • Now you can select the portion of the screen.

Method 3:

  • Take a screenshot of a whole desktop by hitting printscreen.
  • Open the screenshot using GIMP.
  • Press SHIFT + C to crop the portion.


I know this is a 10 year old question but I didn't like any of the options posted. I really like Flameshot. It's a one-stop shop with nice keyboard shortcuts. Simply apt install flameshot.

Flameshot animated usage

Shutter got removed from Debian/*buntu repos because it uses deprecated Perl modules. Gnome- and Mate-screenshot are too basic.

  • This is amazing!
    – Fee
    Sep 7, 2021 at 16:54

Shutter is also a great capturing application and it can crop a portion of the screen automatically.


Well if you mean pressing the Print Screen button and then cropping with a console tool, then you have mogrify to do that (by installing the imagemagick tools)

If you want to take a picture of a certain windows, select the window a leave Alt pressed while pressing the Print Screen key.

Using Compiz, you can zoom to an area using the Super key and scrolling inwards, then Print Screen.

In KDE you have ksnapshot which gives many abilities, one including taking a snapshot of a region.

  • :) "mogrify"... It sounded like a slang term, but I just found out its an actual Linux command.. (and here is the word's etymology if you're interested... and I lke the compiz idea.. thanks
    – Peter.O
    Dec 26, 2010 at 5:56

With imagemagick installed, you can type:

import filename.png

at the command prompt. It will give you a cross-hairs you can use to draw a rectangle on the screen which it will then capture.

(filename.png can be any graphics format.)



sudo apt-get install scrot

scrot (SCReen shOT) is a simple commandline screen capture utility that uses imlib2 to grab and save images. Multiple image formats are supported through imlib2's dynamic saver modules.

Run: scrot -s

-s, --select : Interactively select a window or rectangle with the mouse.


Just wanted to add that you can now type shift+printscreen to select an area to print.


If you want to use GIMP to capture only part of a shot of the display screen, then use File - Acquire - Screenshot - Select region to grab - Snap. Left-click on the screen, hold button down, drag to form a rectangle, and release the mouse button to capture an image of the selected portion of the screen.

Note that different versions of GIMP use different command menu sequences, e.g. "Acquire" may be labelled "Create".


None of the answers worked for me in Linux mint 18 Cinnamon 64-bit,

The following thing in the screenshot worked for me,

enter image description here

Adding steps that I followed as suggested by Tshilidzi Mudau,

  1. Created a script gnome_area_screenshot.sh, contents of which are as follows,
#! /bin/sh

sleep 0.125
gnome-screenshot --area
  1. Opened Keyboard settings from settings menu.

  2. Click on Shortcuts tab.

  3. Click on Add Custom Shortcuts present at the bottom panel.

  4. Give name as 'Area Screenshot' (or anything you wish to).

  5. And Command as /gnome_area_screenshot.sh.

  6. In the Keyboard Shortcuts select 'Area Screenshot' and in the Keyboard bindings Double click and give any key combination which you wish to give as keyboard shortcut.

  • Hi @Gokul Kulkarni, maybe put the steps you followed and the code/commands you ran instead of screenshots? Jul 21, 2017 at 7:05
  • @Tshilidzi Mudau updated the answer. Jul 21, 2017 at 7:17
  • Looking good :) Jul 21, 2017 at 7:19

If you're using GNOME, the imgur screenshot uploader is pretty great. It sits in the top bar. It gives you the option to drag and select an area, select a window, or select a desktop to screenshot. It'll automatically upload the screenshot and give you the link to it.


Use shortcuts.

  1. Open system-keyboard-Shortcuts

    in Settings

  2. Click Custom Shortcuts

  3. Click the button + on the right

    adding custom shortcut option

  4. Add a name such as "crop", and add the following line (assuming you are using gnome)

     gnome-screenshot -a

    adding shortcut popup dialog

  5. Click add

  6. Click "Disable" && set a shortcut as you wish

  7. Pictures would automatically saved in the folder Pictures

    Sample contents of Pictures


I write a bash simulate key shortcut Cmd+Shift+4 in OSX for fast crop screen. What make this shortcut useful because it reduce the number of step to create a crop image. You just need call Ctrl+Shift+4 and drag, file cropped auto save with name format by time created, no popup, typing name etc needed.

  1. add key shortcut Ctrl+Shift+4 in Custom key shortcut. Command link to your bash (eg: /home/nickfarrow/bin/scrot.sh)
  2. Install scrot tool (similar import tool in imagemagick)
  3. add bash to crop screen using scrot or import (need imagemagick): like:

    #! /bin/bash
    DATE=$(date +"%Y-%m-%d_%H_%M_%S")
    scrot -s ~/bin/crop/$DATE.png

~/bin/crop is the folder store crop image.

(Sorry for my English) Hope this help.

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