How to record the screen on your Mac

You can make a video recording of the entire screen or just a selected portion of it.

Use Shift-Command-5 in macOS Mojave

The desktop, showing the floating screenshot controls just above the Dock

With macOS Mojave, press Shift-Command (⌘)-5 on your keyboard to see all the controls you need to record video and capture still images of your screen. Use these onscreen controls to select whether to record the entire screenrecord a selected portion, or capture a still image of your screen. If you haven't upgraded to Mojave, you can record the screen with QuickTime Player.

Record the entire screen

  1. Click the Record Entire Screen button in the onscreen controls. Your pointer changes to a camera .
  2. Click any screen to start recording that screen, or click Record in the onscreen controls.
  3. Use the thumbnail to trim, share, save, or take other actions.

Record a selected portion of the screen

  1. Click the Record Selected Portion button in the onscreen controls. 
  2. Drag to select an area of the screen to record. To move the entire selection, drag from within the selection.
  3. To start recording, click Record in the onscreen controls.
  4. To stop recording, click the Stop Recording button in the menu bar. Or press Command-Control-Esc (Escape).
  5. Use the thumbnail to trim, share, save, or take other actions.  

Trim, share, and save

After you stop recording, a thumbnail of the video appears briefly in the lower-right corner of your screen.

  • Take no action or swipe the thumbnail to the right and the recording is automatically saved. 
  • Click the thumbnail to open the recording. You can then click the Trim button to trim the recording, or click the Share button to share it.  
  • Drag the thumbnail to move the recording to another location, such as to a document, an email, a Finder window, or the Trash. 
  • Control-click the thumbnail for more options. For example, you can change the save location, open the recording in an app, or delete the recording without saving it.

Change the settings

Click Options in the onscreen controls to change these settings:

  • Save to: Choose where your recordings are automatically saved, such as Desktop, Documents, or Clipboard.
  • Timer: Choose when to begin recording: immediately, 5 seconds, or 10 seconds after you click to record.
  • Microphone: To record your voice or other audio along with your recording, choose a microphone.
  • Show Floating Thumbnail: Choose whether to show the thumbnail
  • Remember Last Selection: Choose whether to default to the selections you made the last time you used this tool.
  • Show Mouse Clicks: Choose whether to show a black circle around your pointer when you click in the recording.

Use QuickTime Player

QuickTime Player also has a screen-recording feature, and you don't need macOS Mojave to use it. 

  1. Open QuickTime Player from your Applications folder, then choose File > New Screen Recording from the menu bar. The Screen Recording window opens.
  2. Before starting your recording, you can click the arrow next to the Record button to change the recording settings:
    • To record your voice or other audio with the screen recording, choose a microphone. To monitor that audio during recording, adjust the volume slider (if you get audio feedback, lower the volume or use headphones with a microphone). 
    • To show a black circle around your pointer when you click, choose Show Mouse Clicks in Recording.
  3. To start recording, click the Record button and then take one of these actions:
    • Click anywhere on the screen to begin recording the entire screen.
    • Or drag to select an area to record, then click Start Recording within that area.
  4. To stop recording, click the Stop button in the menu bar, or press Command-Control-Esc (Escape).
  5. After you stop recording, QuickTime Player automatically opens the recording. You can now play, edit, or share the recording.

Learn more

  • When saving your recording automatically, your Mac uses the name ”Screen Recording date at time.mov”.
  • To cancel making a recording, press the Esc key before clicking to record.
  • You can open screen recordings with QuickTime Player, iMovie, and other apps that can edit or view videos.
  • Some apps, such as DVD Player, might not let you record their windows.
  • Learn how to record the screen on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.
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