How to fix the Snipping Tool Windows + Shift + S keys not working?

Since the new Snipping Tool has now taken over from the old version, Win + Shift + S keys have stopped working for several users. For this reason, they can no longer capture a screenshot.

Snipping Tool Keys Windows Shift S Not Working
Snipping Tool Keys Windows Shift S Not Working

To fix this issue, you will need to apply some fixes, such as resetting the snipping tool, disabling the game mode feature, or enabling the snipping tool from notifications and actions if it’s disabled. Failing that, you can also use an alternative key to capture the screenshot from the snipping tool.

IssueWindows + Shift + S keys not working
IndicatorsShortcut combinations associated with Windows key does not work
Common CausesEnabled Keyboard Game Mode
Already have an application uses Windows key
Outdated Snipping Tool
Corrupted Snipping Tool Cache files
Disabled Snipping Tool from Notifications and Actions
SolutionsReset Snipping Tool
Disable Game Mode on Keyboard
Close Applications uses Windows key
Reinstall Snipping Tool

There are many reasons that can cause this issue, such as if the snipping tool is disabled from notifications and actions, Win + Shift + S shortcut might not work. Besides, you might have an application installed that supports global shortcut commands and uses the Windows key when pressing it to capture screenshots. This feature is commonly found in overlay applications, recording applications, and music players. Hence, if you have any of these types of applications installed, go to the keyboard bindings settings and make sure that they are not bound to the Win key.

Another common reason is an enabled game mode. The game mode feature disables the Windows key to avoid minimization during gameplay. This feature may be enabled on your keyboard, which might be why your Windows + Shift + S keys are not working.

Since this issue can be fixed by resetting or reinstalling the snipping tool, it is possible that the application may have encountered some problems preventing it from detecting Windows + Shift + S keys while they were being pressed. That is why some users have been able to capture the screenshot using the PrtScn key after configuring the keyboard settings.

1. Reset the Snipping Tool

When it comes to Microsoft applications that suddenly stop working or responding, the best way to start fixing them is to reset them. The reset feature clears the application cache, which works most of the time if the issue is due to corrupted application cache data.

To reset the snipping tool, follow the steps:

  1. Right-click the Start Menu and select Settings.
    Opening Device Manager from Start Menu
    Opening Device Manager from Start Menu
  2. Go to Apps, then click Installed apps if using Windows 11.
    Navigating to Installed apps
    Navigating to Installed apps
  3. Now search for the Snipping Tool and click on three dots.
  4. Choose Advanced options.
    Navigating to the advanced options of Snipping tool
    Navigating to the advanced options of the Snipping tool
  5. Scroll down to the bottom and click Reset.
  6. Again click Reset to confirm the action.
    Resetting snipping tool
    Resetting snipping tool
  7. Once done, check if the issue is resolved.

2. Enable the Snipping Tool from Notification and actions

It is strange, but this method has worked for a large number of affected users. The disabled snipping tool from notification and actions settings can prevent Win + Shift + S keys from capturing a screenshot. Therefore, it is recommended to enable the snipping tool from Notifications and actions by following these instructions:

  1. Press the Windows key and type Settings.
    Navigating to Windows Settings
    Navigating to Windows Settings
  2. Open Settings and go to System.
  3. Navigate to Notification. If you have Windows 10, go to Notification and actions from the left pane.
    Navigating to Notification Settings
    Navigating to Notification Settings
  4. On the right pane, scroll down to the bottom and make sure the Snipping tool is enabled under Notifications from apps and other senders.
    Enabling Notifications for snipping tool
    Enabling Notifications for the snipping tool

3. Disable Game Mode on your Keyboard

This method is for users who have a keyboard with the Game Mode feature enabled.  The Game Mode feature is designed to avoid accidental minimization, alt + tab, and alt + f4, as they can interrupt the gaming experience. Their manufacturers disable input to the Windows, alt, tab, and f4 keys while the Game Mode feature is activated.

So if you want to capture a screenshot, you will need to disable the Game Mode feature should it be enabled. To disable the Game Mode feature, you can either use a key combination or vendor software.

The most common key combination for disabling the Game Mode is Fn + F10. However, if you don’t know the exact keys required to disable the Game Mode, you can either look into the vendor software or go to the manufacturer’s site to find out the correct combination to disable it. Once you have disabled the Game Mode, you can check whether the issue is fixed or not.

4. Use Print Screen to capture screenshots

The next solution is to use a PrtScn key on your keyboard instead of Win + Shift + S. There is a feature on Windows in keyboard settings that allow users to use the PrtScn key instead of Win + Shift + S. So if the Win + Shift + S shortcut not working; you can use PrtScn key. Here are the steps:

  1. Right-click the Start Menu and select Settings from the listed options.
    Launching Windows Settings
    Launching Windows Settings
  2. Once Settings has been launched, navigate to Ease of access. If you have Windows 11, navigate to Accessibility from the left pane.
    Navigating to Accessibility Settings
    Navigating to Accessibility Settings
  3. Scroll down to the bottom and navigate to Keyboard settings.
    Navigating to Keyboard Settings
    Navigating to Keyboard Settings
  4. Here, enable the Use the PrtScrn button to open screen snipping.
    Configuring PrtScn button to capture screenshots
    Configuring the PrtScn button to capture screenshots
  5. Once done, restart your computer for the changes to take effect, then check whether the PrtScn button is capturing screenshots or not.

5. Reinstall Snipping Tool

If the issue is not fixed yet, the last solution you can try is to reinstall the snipping tool. To do so, follow these steps.

  1. Press the Windows and type Add or remove programs.
    Opening apps and features settings from Start Menu
    Opening apps and features settings from Start Menu
  2. Open Settings and find the Snipping tool.
  3. Click on three dots and click Uninstall.
  4. Again click Uninstall to confirm the action.
    Uninstalling snipping tool
    Uninstalling snipping tool
  5. Once done, open Microsoft Store and search for the Snipping tool.
  6. Then click on the Install button.
    Installing snipping tool
    Installing snipping tool
  7. Once the installation is finished, open it and check if the issue is resolved.

6. Use an alternative application to capture screenshots

If reinstalling the snipping tool did not fix your issue, then you could try switching to alternative applications. There are many applications that capture screenshots and provide advanced editing tools. We recommend ShareX, a screenshot capture application that can be installed from Steam and can run even if Steam is closed in the background.


Hamza Mohammad Anwar

Hamza Mohammad Anwar is an intermediate JavaScript web developer with a focus on developing high-performance applications using MERN technologies. His skill set includes expertise in ReactJS, MongoDB, Express NodeJS, and other related technologies. Hamza is also a Google IT Certified professional, which highlights his competence in IT support. As an avid problem-solver, he recreates errors on his computer to troubleshoot and find solutions to various technical issues.