Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Capturing a Screen.

Capturing a Screen

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 22, 2016)


There may be times when you need to include a screen shot within your Excel worksheet. The easiest way to do this is as follows:

  1. Set up your screen to look the way you want it to.
  2. Press the PrintScreen key. This copies the screen to the Clipboard.
  3. Start Excel (if it is not already started) and select the cell closest to where you want the screen to appear.
  4. Press Ctrl+V to paste the contents of the Clipboard.

This action results in the entire screen being pasted in your worksheet. If you wanted, instead, to only copy and paste a single dialog box or the active window, simply use Alt+PrintScreen in step 2.

If either of these methods still does not fit your needs (for instance, you want to include only a small part of the screen), you can use the following:

  1. Set up your screen to look the way you want it to.
  2. Press the PrintScreen key. This copies the screen to the Clipboard.
  3. Start the Paint accessory (or some other graphics program) and maximize the screen.
  4. Press Ctrl+V to paste the contents of the Clipboard into the program.
  5. Use the program's editing tools to change the image as desired.
  6. When complete, press Ctrl+C to copy the image to the Clipboard.
  7. Start Excel (if it is not already started) and select the cell closest to where you want the screen to appear.
  8. Press Ctrl+V to paste the contents of the Clipboard.

You should understand that once the screen is placed in your workbook, you can move and manipulate it the same as any other graphic. Also note that adding quite a few graphics to your worksheet can dramatically increase the size of the file in which your workbook is saved.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (12512) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Capturing a Screen.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is 3 + 8?

2017-01-09 05:24:50

Colin Bryce

Allan, no. The snipping tool takes a graphical representation of the area highlighted. You need to highlight the data in IE and copy and paste into Excel (not always ideal).

2017-01-09 00:35:48

Allan Corfield

Can I use the snipping tool to copy the data from tables on the Internet into Excel as usable data??

2016-12-25 05:54:01


After you have used the Snipping Tool you will not use anything else. Quick and simple. Select any part or the whole part of any screen or page. Paste via the clipboard.

2016-12-24 13:16:46

Robert Orris

I use SnipIt in Windows 10. It allows me to select, with the mouse, the area of the screen I want to include.

2016-12-24 02:34:48


I never knew about the camera tool, thanks Gayle that's a really useful tip which I can't wait to try.

2016-12-24 02:31:33


An even simpler way to copy a portion of your screen image is to use the Windows snipping tool which captures only the bit you outline. Then copy and paste direct into your documentime.

2016-12-22 18:12:57

Ernie Lippert

I get good results using Snip.

2016-12-22 13:00:06

Juan Londoño

You can also select a number of cells and then go to the first tab, open the sub menu > paste and then select > as image, then select > copy as image, and after that use ctrl + V

2016-12-22 12:00:40

Gayle Larson

Another great tool (as Char mentioned) is the Camera tool, if you are in the same workbook and want to create a link. Add Camera to the Quick Access toolbar. In a worksheet, select the range (if chart or image, include cells above and below);click Camera icon, click cell in same or another worksheet where you want the copy, and you have a linked duplicate that auto updates when the original data or chart is edited. Available in all versions of Excel.

Another great took is Snip, available as a free download for Windows 10 from Microsoft. It creates and keeps a library of every screenshot, allows annotations, etc. It rocks!

2016-12-22 10:26:54

Colin Bryce

There's also a really useful screen capture facility in most Office applications: Insert, Screenshot, Screen Clipping. A little hidden gem

2016-12-22 08:36:52

Dave Smith

Using XP and Excel 97 the key combo of ALT + PRT SC captures the active window.

Which is handy if you want to provide step by step instructions, say, for adding a printer or creating a hyperlink.

2016-12-22 07:45:49

Frank van Schoubroeck

Beware that, when you enter pictures in Excel (such as logos) the programme easily becomes very slow. I had an extremely slow workbook (>10 sec for any edit) that sped up miraculously when I reduced all picture sizes to the smallest (and bad) quality.

2016-12-22 07:20:34


For a part of the screen Windows Snipping Tool is The most convenient. It is still available in 10. Save the image if you want to but my usual use is just to paste it.

2013-03-12 07:35:36

Shreepad S M Gandhi

Thanks Graham for sharing. This is even more better.

2013-03-11 10:17:20


Don't forget about the excel camera. Located in OptionsQuick AccessCommands Not in the Ribbon. This is a great feature and shows any edited changes.

2013-03-11 05:24:33


Hi Allen,

As an alternative to cropping an image in Paint, you can crop an image direct in Excel or Word. After pasting the image in Excel, right click and use the 'size' function. Then use the arrow keys to crop to the size you want. You see the image in situ which can be an advantage.

Hope this is of help, too.



2013-03-09 13:30:08

Graham Hall

If you're using Windows 7 then the Windows Snipping Tool in Accessorieswill also allow you to select just the part of the screen you want. It's a bit more flexible than the Excel/Word version, but it's very similar.

2013-03-09 06:00:30

Shreepad S M Gandhi

Thanks Steve. I was unaware of this feature in Excel and Word.

2013-03-09 05:02:45


If you are using Excel 2010 you can also use INSERT - SCREENSHOT - DROPDOWN - SCREEN CLIPPING.
This switches to the last active window & allows you to select the area you wish to clip & insert at the current location.
The same feature is also available in Word 2010

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