Grab (software)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Grab's timed screenshot dialogue box
Grab's timed screenshot dialogue box
Developer(s) Apple Computer
Stable release
1.10 / July 16, 2017; 13 months ago (2017-07-16)[1]
Operating system OS X
Type screen capture

Grab is an application created by Apple Inc. for Mac OS X, used to take screenshots. Grab is also present in OS X's progenitors NeXTSTEP and OpenStep. It supports capturing a marquee selection, whole window, whole screen, and timed screen. Grab can be found in the Utilities folder under Applications, or by typing in /Applications/Utilities/ in Finder. The Grab utility can also be found in the Finder as a menu item by selecting "Services", then going to "Grab". The only image format for screenshots taken by Grab is TIFF. It can also be found using the Spotlight function (keyboard shortcut CMD SPACE)

This application is preinstalled on all recent Macintosh systems.


As of Mac OS X v10.4, Preview now has a Grab submenu in the File menu, with selection, window and timed screen.[citation needed]

In Mac OS X, it is also possible to save screenshots directly to the Desktop in PDF format (earlier versions of OS X) or PNG format (later versions), using keystrokes shown below. For DRM reasons, it is not possible to use this software while DVD Player is open.

Grab helps determine the size of an element on the screen. By using the selection feature and capturing the screen, one can go to "Edit" > "Inspector" from the menu or press Cmd+1; a dialog box will appear with the dimensions of the selected area.

Screenshot of Inspector feature

Capture Options[edit]

  • Selection - takes a picture of a part of the screen that you select.[2]
  • Window - takes a picture of a window you select.[2]
  • Screen - takes a picture of the entire screen.[2]
  • Timed - screen lets user start a timer and activate part of the screen (such as a menu), and then takes a picture of the screen.[2]


Action Shortcut
Take a picture of the whole screen Cmd-Shift-3 (Holding Ctrl saves the image to the clipboard instead of to a file on the disk.)
Take a picture of part of the screen Cmd-Shift-4, then drag to select the area desired in the picture. (Holding Ctrl saves the image to the clipboard.) Escape cancels the procedure.
Take a picture of a window, a menu, the menu bar, or the Dock. Press Cmd-Shift-4, then press the Space bar. Move the pointer over the area desired so that it is highlighted, then click. To drag to select the area instead, press the Space bar again. Escape cancels the procedure.