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Dear Aunt TUAW: Help me ditch the screenshot shadow


Dear Aunt TUAW,

I miss my old style screenshots.

I use screenshots a LOT for presentations and training purposes -- specifically the window-only snapshot (cmd-ctrl-shift-4 followed by the spacebar).

This feature is still in Lion; however, it now includes a pretty big drop shadow with the screenshot. Is there a way I can turn this drop shadow off to trim the window down to just the important parts -- the window and its contents?

Your loving nephew,


Dear Patrick,

There's a simple command-line approach to controlling whether Lion adds those shadows or not (Snow Leopard, too, as this dates back quite a while). Just issue the following to disable the shadows. Use false instead of true to enable them.

defaults write disable-shadow -bool true

There are other cool screencapture preferences you can use as well. For example, you can set the capture format to JPEG, TIFF, or PNG using the following. Google around to discover more.

defaults write type jpeg

After setting the defaults, you must restart the SystemUI server:

killall SystemUIServer

And there you have it. If you're not a command-line kind of guy, you can also use the latest build of GrabUpper to set the shadow and capture format defaults with a simple menu selection.

Hope this helps! Hugs,

Auntie T.

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