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4 ways to take a full-page screenshot in Google Chrome

Taking a full-screen capture on Google Chrome doesn't have to be complicated. Follow this how-to for flawless screenshots, every time.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor
Reviewed by Alyson Windsor
Woman working on laptop
iStockphoto/Getty Images

So you want to take a screenshot of an entire webpage, small bits at the bottom and all? Usually, you're only able to capture what's within the four corners of your screen, leaving behind elements that you'd have to scroll down for. It may seem impossible to capture everything in the frame, but we're about to show you how it very much can be done. 

Also: How to screen record in Windows 10 or Windows 11

The process may not be as straightforward as you would expect, but follow any of these four methods and I guarantee you will have flawless full-screen captures. 

1. Save as PDF

First off, is it a picture you need, or will a PDF do? If a PDF will do, then you can:

  1. Go File > Print… (if the menu bar is hidden on Windows, press F11, or alternatively, you can right-click on the webpage and select Print...
  2. Change the Destination to Save as PDF
  3. Click Save to download the webpage. 

Note that this method may distort the page formatting in order to fit what you see on the screen onto a PDF page. 

Printing a PDF in Google Chrome

Printing a PDF in Google Chrome

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

But what if you want a JPG or PNG file?

Well, this is where things get more complicated. You have two options: (1) the harder, geekier way or (2) one of my favorite simple-to-use free tools. 

2. The geekier way to save a full-page screenshot as a picture

There is a built-in way to take full-screen screenshots in Google Chrome, but you'll quickly start to find that the struggle is very real.

Step 1: Find Developer Tools

The feature is buried in Google Chrome's Developer Tools, a settings hub that gives you granular access to most if not all the elements of a webpage. But before you find the feature, you need to find the actual Developer Tools first.

See those three vertical dots that are to the right of the address bar? Click on them, then click on More Tools and then Developer Tools.

Opening Developer Tools in Google Chrome

Opening Developer Tools in Google Chrome

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Step 2: Don't panic 

OK, if you've never seen what follows, it might look like you've stumbled into the Matrix. Don't panic.

Google Chrome Developer Tools or the Matrix?

Google Chrome Developer Tools or the Matrix?

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Take a look at the menu bar that's on the Developer Tools screen. You'll see a new set of three vertical dots. Click on them and then click on Run Command.

Accessing the Run Command

Accessing the Run Command

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Step 3: Select Capture full size screenshot 

Into the Run box that appears, type "screenshot" to bring up a bunch of related options. You'll want to find the Capture full size screenshot result.

Finding the screenshot command

Finding the screenshot command

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Click the Screenshot button and this will take a screenshot of the webpage you are on (it won't show all the Matrix stuff) and it should save automatically (if it doesn't, remember to save it if prompted).

Also: How to take a screenshot on Chromebook 

Yeah, I told you it was a pain to do, and this isn't really all that convenient if you plan on taking lots of screenshots. However, it is a good way if you have no tools available and can't install an extension.

Fortunately, there are some simpler ways.

3. The easier way to save a full-page screenshot as a picture

A simpler option is to install a browser extension that allows you to take screenshots. 

I recommend taking a look at GoFullPage

It's reliable, safe, and free. The downside of this is that it doesn't give you a whole lot of options of customizing the capture or the output, but if you just want to take a few screenshots, this is a good option. 

GoFullPage Google Chrome browser extension

GoFullPage Google Chrome browser extension

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

4. Buy a professional tool

If you need to take a lot of screenshots, especially if they are different content types or you have more complex requirements, such as needing to capture the cursor or you want a screenshot captured on a timer, I recommend investing in a professional tool. 

My weapon of choice in this battle is, and has been for many years now, TechSmith's amazing SnagIt.

If you want the best chance of capturing a web page accurately, SnagIt is the tool you need. I've worked with all the different methods, and this is by far the best tool for the job because it gives you tons of options and a lot of flexibility with both the capturing process and the output.

I've been a SnagIt user now for well over a decade, using it to capture many thousands of screen captures, and it's never failed me.

I highly recommend this to anyone who needs to take a lot of screenshots. 

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