It is possible to record the contents of a computer screen, whether it is the desktop, games or programs. On a Windows computer, you can use OBS Studio and on a Mac, you can use QuickTime player.
Learn how to record your computer screen on Windows and MacOS with our step-by-step guide. Discover the best software and built-in tools for screen recording, including OBS Studio, QuickTime Player, and Windows Game Bar. Capture your screen for tutorials, presentations, gaming, and more. Our guide covers everything you need to know to start recording your computer screen like a pro.
Record screen on Windows
- download Open Broadcast Software (OBS) Studio. Go to the OBS studio website and click Download installer on the right side of the page.
Since there is no screen recorder in Windows, you must download free OBS if you want to record your desktop or multiple programs at the same time.
If you only want to save a specific game or app, you can use the game bar app in Windows 10 Creators edition instead.
- Install OBS Studio. Double click on the OBS Studio installation file (you will find it in the default downloads location of your browser), select Yes when prompted, click Next> I accept> Next, uncheck the box extension if you don’t want OBS in your browser then click Install.
- Click Finish when prompted. This button is located at the bottom right of the window. Click it to complete the installation and open OBS Studio.
You can also open OBS Studio by clicking Start Windows, type obs studio and then select OBS Studio at the top of the start window.
- Select Yes and the automatic configuration wizard window will open. To complete the configuration wizard:
- check the box Optimize for recording, I do not broadcast
- click on Next
- select again Next
- click Apply Settings
- if you prefer to configure your own settings, click on No instead
- Add your computer desktop as a source. Click the + icon under the “Sources” header, select Display Capture or Game Capture and click OK at the bottom of the next window.
- Click on Start Recording. This option is located at the bottom right of the window. Click it to start recording your screen content.
You can stop recording by clicking on Stop Recording at the bottom right of the window.
- Repair the “Cannot start recording” error if necessary. In some cases, you will see an error that says “Cannot start recording. Check the registry for more details “in a pop-up window. To fix this error:
- click OK in the error message
- select Settings at the bottom right of the OBS Studio window
- click on Exit at the top left of the settings window
- pull down the Encoder drop-down menu
- select x264 from the drop-down menu
- click on Apply then OK
Record screen on Mac
- Open Spotlight. Click the magnifying glass icon at the top right of the screen.
- Click on quicktime in Spotlight. Your Mac will search for the QuickTime app.
- Click on QuickTime Player. QuickTime should be at the top of the search results. Click on it to open it.
- Select File. This menu item is located at the top left of your Mac screen. It opens a drop-down menu.
- Click New Screen Recording. This option is at the top of the File drop-down menu. Click it to open the Recording bar of the screen.
- Select the record button. It is a red and silver circular button at the bottom of the bar. Click on it to open a selection screen.
You can also click ∨ to the right of the recording button to open a drop-down menu with microphone options and the option to enable or disable mouse clicks in the recording.
- Click anywhere on the screen. QuickTime will start recording the entire contents of your screen.
- Otherwise, you can click and drag the selection box to frame part of your screen and then click the record button again to save only the framed section.
- To stop recording, click File on the menu bar of your Mac and then Stop in the drop-down menu.