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Flameshot – Simple, powerful screenshot tool for all major operating systems (flameshot.org)
323 points by VitalyAnkh on March 13, 2021 | hide | past | favorite | 125 comments

I started using Wayland about a month ago on both my work computer and my laptop (On Pop_OS! 20.10). After seeing too much graphical glitches and weird behavior, specially because Alacritty (my favorite terminal) did not have any window decoration (I read through the whole issue on Gnome's issue tracker for server side decoration and got a little disappointed), I stopped using it on my work PC. But still I'm using it on my laptop. I haven't had any issues there, but I just use my laptop for some web surfing and zoom. Screen capture is a hassle too. I was trying to capture only a part of my screen and had to do an hour worth of research to finally decide to just switch to X.org and get the job done. It's great that Flameshot is now supporting Wayland, and it's great that it is trying to support all the common protocols.

I've used Flameshot for a while and can say it is definitely the best of many tools I've tried. The direct upload to imgur is particularly nice.

Why do people still use imgur after all the antipatterns they've pushed? When I tap the direct image links in this thread I get greeted with an extremely slow infinite scrolling page, social media features galore, and intrusive requests to install the app.

I like postimages.org.

>The owner of this website (postmates.org) has banned the country or region your IP address is in (HU) from accessing this website.


Thank you for recommending postmates.org. Just what I was looking for!

Is it better than Greenshot?


I love nesting screenshots into screenshots by simply hitting the PRTSC button muliple times





And you should also install "hoverzoom" under brave broser with multiple blockers:


No. greenshot is fantastic. But windows only

Greenshot is fantastic, I would have loved it if it existed for Linux.

Yes, and the ability to annotate and block out parts of the image before saving. Simple tools that for some reason other screenshot tools have been mind-bogglingly oblivious to provide.

(It has a blur tool too, but I don't recommend blurring sensitive data as if the area under the blur kernel is 1, the sum of the pixel values will be the same before and after the blur, and if an attacker recognizes which font and size it is from other parts of the screen, they use could dictionary attack for the text with the sum of the pixels as the hash to be cracked.)

I'm so glad. I've been looking for a decent screenshot tool on linux for ... basically forever. This is so amazing.

Thank you!

This is AWESOME news!

I really love to see how well supported Wayland nowadays is. We're probably still missing a couple of things, but so far my experience has been fantastic.

#1 problem for me is a combination of issues: - xwayland has no DPI scaling support (or rather, naive blurry pixel upscaling) - jebrains ides have no native Wayland support

Result is a blurry mess of an ide. Once that is resolved, I'll be wholeheartedly aboard the Wayland train.

> jebrains ides have no native Wayland support

I'm not sure about this statement to be honest, but maybe I never cared that much since xwayland works already good on my machines: have you tried with a custom JDK?

I had some issues with sway and Jetbrains back in November, but I fixed those by running them on the latest JDK: https://github.com/swaywm/sway/issues/3007#issuecomment-7245...

Granted that yes, probably it's not Wayland native, but using HiDPI in my case didn't seem to be a problem to be honest

According to their bugtracker[1], there does still seem to be issues, but I hadn't looked in a while, and I'm glad to now see they plan to have it solved by end of the year \o/

1: https://youtrack.jetbrains.com/issue/JBR-1315

The year was 2021: Windows was starting again to support non-x86 hardware architectures, and Microsoft was shipping the best to Linux desktop experience. Mac OS shipped with the the fastest mobile processor in the world. Android basically owned the phone market.... Linux desktop was just getting somewhat working basic screenshot support.

To be fair screenshoting has always worked great and a larger part of the Linux community always adopts things well before they are ready.

If you don't want sort of broken stuff don't use a distro that changes major versions every 6 months.

To be fair it was only Flameshot that was kind of missing Wayland support. There were / are other alternatives specifically made for Wayland: saying that the whole ecosystem was lagging behind becaude of this specific app is a bit of a stretch.

But the meme is good, I'll give you that

The meme is good, but calling flameshot "somewhat working basic screenshot support" is an enormous understatement.

Yet, it doesn't have a proper highlighter pen. It draws a straight line and adds up. If you go over the same spot twice or more text might become unreadable and it will just look wrong. I have been unable to find a Linux screenshot tool that does it right. I use Flameshot on Linux too, but it's the least bad one in my book.

When it says "supports Wayland" does it actually mean that Wayland upped the game to support screenshots at the protocol level, or is this all the major compositors have settled on a de-facto screenshot standard to implement in parallel to Wayland?

Because I don't think, technically, it is possible for a screenshot tool to "support Wayland".

There's no real standard, but something that may develop into a de-facto standard. The 3 possible ways I am aware of are:

- org.gnome.Shell.Screenshot, a dbus API primarily/only used by GNOME

- wlr-screencopy, a Wayland protocol extension primarily implemented by wlroots, which Sway, Wayfire and many other compositors use

- xdg-desktop-portal, which is promoted by the freedesktop group and an abstraction of both APIs using special portals for each desktop, Flatpak compatible and delivering screen content via Pipewire (supported by Firefox and Chromium)

Flameshot now supports the former 2, I have the most long term hope for the latter one.

I was researching the issue and noticed wlr-screencapture. I was hoping to see it at https://github.com/wayland-project/wayland-protocols too, but no luck. Thanks for the lead on xfg-desktop-portal.

It is fascinating watching the near decade-long journey as Wayland tackles screenshots.

Whats fascinating to me is that I had NO idea there was some battle of some sorts in the "screenshot biosphere"

TBH I use GreenShot exclusively as it is seamless and does every thing I Need [0]

[0] https://i.imgur.com/x0oMzb6.png

And I can do things like this

[1] https://i.imgur.com/ZtR60qw.png

Nested fucking screenshots.

All I have to do is hit prtscrn each iteration I want to capture

There's a battle over basically everything beyond drawing basic windows in the Wayland sphere, with the parties' attitudes about as follows:

- Wayland team: "Out of scope, lol" (security, keeping it as generic as possible)

- Gnome: "Works for us" (dbus APIs specific to Gnome")

- wlroots: Developing extensions to the Wayland protocol and attempting to get them into Wayland proper and adopted by others

- KDE: Mostly going the KDE way where it makes sense, but open to wlr persuasion (they will implement layer-shell, but keep their own ways for some other things)

- Freedesktop group (I'm the least familiar with this one): Promoting some stuff meant for Flatpak, but not really showing much initiative beyond that

This fragmentation is one of the reasons Wayland adoption is slow. Users expect things to work across desktops as they used to on X and developers aren't always clear about compatibility either. Many people seem to think that Wayland is just another display server (it's not, it's a protocol!) with all of the old functionality and are frustrated when they find out it is not.

The fragmentation will probably exist for quite a while. Pipewire will probably take over the screen sharing space and KDE and wlroots will share more protocols (Gnome gonna Gnome, of course), but there are just many things that are compositor family- or even compositor specific, like an xkill-equivalent, which I still miss dearly.

By fascinating you mean depressing, right? If Wayland has taken this long to get a basic feature like screenshots what other features does it not support?

A lot of things. The main thing to realize is that the Wayland team doesn't really care about much other than putting windows into compositors.

Wayland doesn't actually support screenshots, it's all extensions.

According to the website, it has "experimental" support for GNOME and Plasma (KDE) on Wayland, with Sway added as of the latest version (0.9). As far as I'm aware those three account for most Wayland desktops in the wild, but maybe I'm missing something.

Using it daily, Flameshot is great! Two wishes I would love to be able to add arrows to an existing, previously arrowed+labeled screenshot, rather then having to redo it again, so the style matches. Also, adding captured screenshots to the list of recent files (in his example Nautilus) would be awesome.

Same here. Exactly my points on this great tool. Keep it up!

If you're looking for a screenshot tool for macOS, I cannot recommend CleanShot X highly enough. It in the league of its own, with scroll capture, gifs, even changing your desktop in the screenshot, but not "in reality". I'm really impressed.

Yes. A thousand times.

At our small company we trialed Jumpshare, CloudApp and a bunch of other stuff for both video and screenshots.

Cleanshot was by far the best, and costs the least. Unlike most tools which are SaaSified and require a monthly subscription, CleanShot still offers a one-off license. It's a steal.

The only one at our company not using Cleanshot is a developer on Linux. I think he's using Flameshot.

> Cleanshot was by far the best, and costs the least. Unlike most tools which are SaaSified and require a monthly subscription, CleanShot still offers a one-off license. It's a steal.

I just want to remark upon how strange it is Mac users are just so nonchalantly paying for bits and bobs because their OS doesn't do things they need it to do.

I spent some time getting my Linux setup _just so_ and feel like I gave macOS a good go when I tried it for 11 months as a daily driver, but I just couldn't take it.

Find a little niggling problem that bothers you just a little bit? Here's a program that fixes it, but it's $5.

Repeat ad nauseam.

I've been a linux user for >10 years and switched to Mac ~4 years ago. I use, love, create, maintain and contribute to open source.

Honestly, the only thing I miss from Linux is i3 (window manager). For the rest, much happier with what Mac offers. I use spectacle on MacOS, which isn't nearly as good as i3wm. It's open-source. I use a bunch of other free or open source tools for Mac. Karabiner, f.lux and lots of other tools.

CleanShot is probably one of the few paid tools I have on my Mac. My company pays for it, and it's something like $20 one-off. Well worth it. I would have paid triple that if it worked on Linux.

I think it's a false dichotomy that Linux == free == good and Mac == paid == bad.

Also, my time is worth more to me and to my company. I feel more productive and that I waste less time fiddling on my Mac than my colleague on Linux. Perhaps it's an age thing, but I now value my time more, and prefer to fiddle only with certain things and not others.

YMMV. All the power to you for using Linux!

There’s a newer fork of Spectacle out there called “Rectangle” that is actively maintained. You can find it on GitHub. Same shortcut keys by default and more options for other stuff.

sorry it was just my bad memory :) I switched to rectangle a few months ago already.

I couldn't see in their home page, but is the cloud upload limited to their own cloud? It ticks most of my other boxes, but couldn't tell on that one.

Yeah, their own cloud only. Sample URL: https://cln.sh/WjTbfF

I never use it though, because I take screenshot with CleanShot and then share directly in Slack / etc.

Indeed. It’s indispensable really. Annotations are perfect too!

I just tried it, I love it! Thanks! I work in software testing: this is my new capture tool because it will save me a lot of time.

Somewhat related, does anyone know of a working screen recorder for wayland? The gnome builtin one is broken on 20.04 and 20.10. There’s a fix upstream, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to make it to the repos for a while yet

Have you tried Peek?


it doesn't appear to support wayland


Doesn't work.

I also like peek.

I use `wf-recorder`- it should work well, has worked well for me.


Wfrecorder [0] is what I use, doesn't have a fancy gui but it just works

0: https://github.com/ammen99/wf-recorder

OBS should work. I believe depending on your setup, you may need to setup Pipewire.

Flameshot is really great, man. One of my desert island tools definitely.

I don't wanna poop on their parade, but haven't Wayland screenshotters been around for a while? https://github.com/emersion/grim

That one has at least been around for long enough, and has worked perfectly under Sway for long enough, that I had to look up its name because I had it bound to a hotkey and had forgotten what it was called.

grim (awesome together with slurp and wl-clipboard) only works on wlroots. Flameshot aims to be cross-desktop compatible and is a GUI tool.

Same. I have a tiny script with:

    FILENAME="screenshot-`date +%F-%H%M%S`"
    grim -g "$(slurp)" ~/screenshots/$FILENAME.png

Hit one key, select the region to screenshot and I have a file in that directory with a very predictable filename.

Reading grim’s README, it looks like a terminal tool, while flameshot is a GUI tool. You mean flameshot should just wrap grim on wayland?

grim can write the image to stdout. GUI like [1] can read images from stdin. You can make a script that pipes one to the other and bind that in your compositor.

[1]: https://github.com/jtheoof/swappy

You can also use "display" from imagemagick with a pipe. Lots of people probably have that installed already.

It’s amazing to know pipe, stdin and stdout work for image, thanks!

Don't get me wrong, Flameshot is a great tool, but this feels a bit like celebrating every turn after reinventing the wheel.

it kinda is.

the whole wayland ecosystem is slowling taking shape month after month. and given the radical change that wayland is, most thing have to be re-implemented using radically different tooling, libraries and approaches, which is very similar to re-inventing.

Major distros have been shipping wayland as the default backend for almost five years! I mean, yes, it's a lot of work. But it was wildly premature, and the community support for this stuff has been nothing short of a disaster of apathy and ignorance.

Which is to say: what you say is true, but there's no excuse for breaking screenshots (!) for half a decade in the name of "progress".

(And I say that as someone who genuinely thinks Wayland itself is great software. But the desktop projects and distros have a job to do too, and they didn't.)

> Which is to say: what you say is true, but there's no excuse for breaking screenshots (!) for half a decade in the name of "progress".

Breaking, or wholly removing, loved and important features because the developers believe they know better is sort of the modus operandi of the Gnome team; and don't you dare file a bug report. They don't accept criticism graciously.

See also: file picker icons, desktop icons, task tray, et cetera.

This is sadly spreading... you have a thing, that is old, well tested, and works (and had worked for years).... but someone wants to reimplement this same thing in Rust, or whatever language of the day, because it's "safer" than (eg.) C... so you get something that has 40% of the features of the old software, 20% of the features that were done with another standard software, and one or two really important features missing.... but developer and distro-makers don't care, because it's "modern" and written in Rust (or whatever).

> A _modern_ tool for blah blah.

I generally parse this as half-baked, not battle-tested, and difficult to use.

Really only Fedora has shipped Wayland by default for five years, and they do this with a lot of other tech as well (GNOME 3 and Cgroups v2 to name some more). If there is no user demand, nobody wants to do the work of supporting new technology, which is why Fedora releases things before they are ready. Anyone using Fedora should know this.

Well, yeah, but... FIVE YEARS. I mean, sure, Fedora ships bleeding edge stuff. But can you imagine a world where, I dunno, LTO or ASLR or C++ ABI changes or whatever took FIVE YEARS to stabilize and were still missing core features that the previous technology offered?

I mean, no one was surprised in 2016 when Wayland landed that there would be bumps in the road. It's 2021 now!

question for those out of the loop - what is Wayland? how is it related to Flameshot? it is mentioned but not explained in the post.

Flameshot supports Wayland recently. That why there is a “all major operating systems” in the title of the post.

It claims to be the successor to xorg. For like 5+ years now.

Cool tool but redundant on macOS. Do screenshot using Shift-CMD-4 or 5 and edit using Preview to add arrows, text etc. I usually screenshot a part of the screen directly to the clipboard, then paste it into Mail.app where I can quickly edit it and add some text, errors, drawings etc.

Redundant on Win10 now, too: WIN+SHIFT+S does the same.

Forgot to mention that Ctrl-Shift-CMD-4 etc puts it directly into the clipboard. Without Ctrl, it will be saved as a file.

I've reversed those two since I use the clipboard a lot more frequently.

Hmm, funny I should see this here after TeMPOraL mentioned it to me a few days ago. It looks much better than Shutter, which I use now. I'll try to write an IMGZ plugin for it, one-shot image upload and copying the URL to the clipboard would be fantastic.

I am not able to use it on sway with default swaybar. The notification simply says "Unable to capture screen" when I click on the tray icon. From CLI also I tried a few commands but nothing happens. No errors as well. Can you please help me?

0.9.x still has quite a few issues including not working well on scaled hidpi setups on Wayland.



seems like xdg-desktop-portal-wlr depends on having grim installed. At least it started working for me when I installed grim edit: maybe not, is still only works sometimes

> Ability to run flameshot on Sway

I assume that this full wlroots-based compositor support (so Wayfire as well), which is great!

Not working completely as intended here (sway, nixos): it can take a single screenshot, and then later executions fail with those messages: http://0x0.st/-Z6n.txt

I like the direct upload to imgur though.

Anyone knows how to bind the printscreen key to automated flameshot screenshoting ? (using awesome/sway/thingslikethat).

I'd like to emulate spectacle (kde screenshot tool) that allows a 2 seconds delay between rectangular area or application to be screenshoted.

For AwesomeWM, I have this in my rc.lua in the globalkeys table:

  awful.key({ }, "Print", function () awful.spawn("flameshot gui") end,
            {description = "Make a screenshot (relies on flameshot)", group = "clipboard"})

Tangentially related, here's my screenshot command for grim that you could easily build a sleep into:

command_screenshot_interactive = grim -g "$(slurp)" - | tee $(xdg-user-dir DOCUMENTS)/screencap/$(date +%Y-%m-%dT%H:%M:%SZ).png | wl-copy

In i3 (and therefor sway) you can use bindsym. I don't know it off the top of my head, but it should be easy enough to find. The "-d" option with flameshot is used to have delays.

I prefer such utilities to be native to the environment (typically OS) and tightly integrated.

Just to be clear: there exist lots of other screenshot tools which has supports Wayland, so this isn’t the first or only tool which does so.

Always nice to see more tools support Wayland though.

For now I’m still happy with grim and how it integrates into my swaywm setup.

Recently gave up on Wayland (for the moment) due to the inability to screen share most applications on Google Meet. I realise this isn't really Wayland's fault, but that doesn't really solve my problem.

I can share screen with pipewire on Google Meet. It's not perfect, because you can select specific windows, but it works.

I can share some specific windows, but not the whole desktop, which ends up involving a very tedious unshare and reshare to swap back and forth between windows instead.

Agreed, this is where I'm at as well. In general, I actually found sway to be wonderful, but it's not worth the hassle of switching over anytime I have a meeting where I could possibly need to screen share.

I had screen resolution issues with xorg at one point which Wayland resolved, but they no longer appear to be an issue and the lack of screen sharing has recently became an issue (change of responsibilities has led to more meetings requiring desktop screen sharing), so after a couple of years on Wayland I've recently jumped back to xorg.

I like the innovation of having annotations available within the tool; but I make games, a video alternative with a timeline of annotations would be killer.

See ScreenToGif (amazing tool)


EDIT: Windows-only

this was submitted a month ago - https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=26113753 i managed to build it for mac, but the dealbreaker was that text couldn't be moved. i'm sticking to Zapier's Zappy for now but even it has lacking features :( very close to writing my own...

Great to have discovered this nice tool! After fiddle it for a while, it doesn't seem to be able to select specific window and capture?

Does it capture a screenshot and then you edit the still frame? Or are you drawing onto a potentially changing background?

Still frame.

I set my print screen key to it, and works every time, instead of the built-in screenshot tool where the popups/menus will have disappeared.

Glad this tool exists I have just moved to it. The main thing missing in my opinion to record a video as a gif.

For users who like flameshot: I found ksnip even more compelling as it has more annotation features and tabs.

Anyone else here who found Shutter to be quite handy?

I tried flameshot once and don't really get how one would find it more useful than Shutter.

I think flameshot is more for people who prefer design over functionality. Although the feature set is not too bad. Does shutter have annotation features?

If by annotation you mean arrows, numbered circles, texts, coloured boxes and so on, then yes, it has.

Is there a way to install Shutter on modern Debian? It only is available for old stable and oldoldstable. I would love to try it, but prefer function over non-function.

I tested ksnip and it is also very good, thanks HN!

nice to have some alternatives to grim[1] on Sway. Guess most people won't care, however I would not want my screenshot tool to be able to access the network.

[1] https://github.com/emersion/grim

Will video be supported at some point?

Kinda wish this and snag it would load to s3 and put the public url in my clipboard.

Is this Wayland-only or does it also work with X and a window manager like i3?

I've been using this with X for years, great tool!

Great to know, thanks!

The auto incrementing label is very cool, im glad your enjoying yourself.

This was the last essential tool needed to fully switch to Wayland.

Would love to see a screenshot of that screenshot tool.

I wish this tool existed on MacOS, being able to annotate screenshots in such a fluid manner was a great feature on Linux.

Literally the first sentence of the linked page is "Improved MacOS support. MacOS is now officially supported and we will resolve any reported issues on this platform."

However, I think build-in screenshot tools (that even can take videos) in Macos are already quite powerful. What do you miss?

I haven't looked in awhile, so maybe Mac has some of these now

- immediate jump into editor after taking screenshot, with...

- text annotations

- arrow annotations

- box/circle annotations


- upload to imgur

- copy to clipboard


Unless this does something that I'm not seeing, macOS has this tool builtin

- It supports macOS

- macOS has even better tools built in

- If that's not enough, try CleanShot

What is the best screen recorder?

OBS Studio + some mechanism to connect it to your compositor.

For wlroots-based compositors like sway here's the most lightweight solution: https://hg.sr.ht/~scoopta/wlrobs

For mutter (GNOME): https://github.com/flatpak/xdg-desktop-portal + pipewire

wlrobs has issues for me with 2 screens of different densities. With xdg-desktop-portal-wlr the Pipewire route will work as well.

My favorite way to record on wlroots compositors is wf-recorder, which seems to be lighter on resources than the others.

There's also a fork of SimpleScreenRecorder (with similar issues, unfortunately).

Here's an overview of screencasting tools for wlroots based compositors like Sway and Wayfire: https://github.com/solarkraft/awesome-wlroots#screencasting

How does this compare to ShareX

ShareX is more feature-rich, but the settings are pretty convoluted. Flameshot is more easy to use and is available for Linux. I personally use ShareX on Windows and Flameshot on Linux.

Am I missing the hype?

Shutter is the only screenshot tool for Linux that meets my needs.

But no Wayland support.

Windows is not a major OS anymore apparently

it runs on Windows too... Literally the second bullet point on the page is about Windows releases, would be kind of odd to list that if they didn't have Windows releases.

The website doesn't really make it clear, but it supports Windows, MacOS and Linux (in all flavors).

Even though Windows now has a quite good screenshot story out-of-the-box with the Win+Shift+S shortcut, Flameshot seems to have some very nice annotation options that I haven't seen anywhere else.

ShareX is native option in Windows, support screenshot, annotation, record screen as gif or video. And can upload to many services

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