How to screen record on a laptop

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Screen recording allows you to capture video and audio of what’s happening on your laptop screen. This can be useful for creating tutorials, recording gameplay, capturing presentations, and more. Screen recording is built into most operating systems these days, making the process easy. In this article, I’ll walk you through the step-by-step process for screen recording on a laptop.

Things You’ll Need

  • A laptop running Windows, MacOS, ChromeOS or Linux
  • An internal or external microphone (if you want to capture audio)

Screen Recording Options by Operating System
The exact screen recording process will vary slightly depending on which operating system your laptop runs. Here are the built-in options for popular operating systems:

Windows 10 and 11 – Game Bar
MacOS – QuickTime Player
ChromeOS – Chromebook Screen Recorder
Linux – SimpleScreenRecorder, Kazam, FFmpeg

I’ll provide instructions for capturing footage using Game Bar on Windows and QuickTime Player on Mac below. Refer to the documentation for your OS if using something else.

Screen Recording on Windows 10/11
Windows 10 and 11 computers have a built-in Game Bar tool that provides an easy screen recorder. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Open the game bar by pressing the Windows key + G on your keyboard or clicking the notification icon in the taskbar.
  2. Click on the red dot icon to start recording. Alternatively, click the Windows key + Alt + R keyboard shortcut.
  3. Select if you want to record audio from your mic and system sounds. Adjust any other settings.
  4. Click Start Recording and the 3-2-1 countdown will initiate the recording.
  5. To stop recording, reopen the Game Bar using the Windows key + G keyboard shortcut and select Stop Recording.
  6. To access your screen recordings for editing or sharing, open the Captures folder in File Explorer.

Screen Recording on Mac
To screen record on a MacBook or iMac,
follow these steps:

  1. Open QuickTime Player from your Applications folder or Dock.
  2. Click File > New Screen Recording.
  3. Select if you want to record the full screen, just a portion, or the iPhone or iPad connected to your Mac.
  4. Click the red Record button and your recording will begin after a short 3-2-1 countdown.
  5. To end your screen recording on Mac, simply click the Stop button in your menu bar.
  6. The video will be automatically saved to your Mac’s hard drive as an MOV file to edit or share.

Extra Tips
Here are some helpful extra tips when screen recording on a laptop:

  • Check audio levels before recording if sound quality is important
  • Close unnecessary apps and browser tabs to allow more system resources for the recording
  • Use a laptop stand and external keyboard or mouse for better ergonomics
  • Disable notifications before recording to avoid disruptions
  • Use built-in video editing software to trim and polish the video when done