March 21, 2019

Snap Spiffy Linux Screenshots with Shutter - page 2

Save to Network, Multiple File Formats, Capture Long Web Pages

  • March 18, 2010
  • By Paul Ferrill

One of the really cool features of Shutter is the Shutter Drawing Tool. This handy function makes it really easy to annotate or highlight specific areas of your screenshot. It has tools for highlighting, drawing arrows and adding text and a censor tool to quickly blot out things like user names, passwords or any other sensitive text you don't want to show up in your final image. The cropping tool lets you crop a picture to a precise size although the mechanics are a little different than what you might be used to. In this case you have to drag a rectangle around the area that you wish to save and then click on the crop button.

Rulers along the top and left edge show the size of your captured image to help keep your perspective and to give you an idea of how large the image would be on a web page. Another really handy tool is the auto-increment shape. One of the most common tasks when annotating a screen for documentation is to show a user what to do in a step-by-step fashion. This tool makes adding step graphics a single click for each step.

<em>Shutter drawing tool</em>
Shutter drawing tool

You can use the Shutter Drawing Tool to edit or annotate other images as well. First you have to load the image from the main Shutter menu. Then you can edit it just as if you had captured it from the screen. Be sure to save your edited image with a new name if you want to keep a copy of the original. It's definitely not as full-featured as The Gimp, but it does provide some basic capabilities specifically targeted at annotating images.


Shutter uses a plug-in architecture to add functionality without the need to modify the base code. Every time you launch Shutter it checks to see if any new plug-ins have been added to the repository. The current list of plug-ins include image tweaking tools to provide 3-D rotation, edge enhancements, watermarking and various special effects such as jig-saw puzzle pieces. There's also a plug-in for exporting a screen shot to a PDF file.

If you don't like the results from running a plug-in, you can simply click on the undo button and it will revert back to the unaltered image. There's a redo button to apply the effect again if you need it. Shutter fully supports drag-and-drop of images from applications like Nautilus. To snag an image from the clipboard you simply do file, new, import-from-clipboard.

Bottom Line

Shutter is one of those tools that will become indispensible to anyone taking screenshots. It's also a handy tool for grabbing images of web pages it you need something like that. Best of all, it's free and just a few clicks away from your handy software package manager!

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