Sometimes you want to capture just part of a Web page to print out or put into a file. Windows won't permit it. It makes you take all the pages of a long document or at best a screen-sized hunk if--and it's a big if--you can get the Print Screen key to work in a given situation.
But with an easy-to-use shareware capture program, the task is kind of fun.
Several types of programs are available. One of the most popular and friendly is SnagIt, available for download at http://www.snagit.com. Macintosh folks can use a similar program, Snapz, at http://www.ambrosiasw.com.
If you plan to use SnagIt with some regularity, it's probably worth answering "yes" when the install program asks if you want a shortcut icon placed on your desktop. That way it's ready to use whenever the whim strikes.
Let's say the whim strikes when you are on a Web page devoted to the Merry-Go-Round Museum in Sandusky, Ohio, at http://www.carousel.org/sandusky/index.htm. Maybe you want to make a printout of a picture of the museum itself, housed in an old post office complete with rotunda.
You shrink the Web browser window--and the windows of any other programs that stand between you and the desktop--by clicking the minimize button at the top right of the screen.
When the desktop is revealed, you double-click the SnagIt icon to get the program up and running.
Now's a good time to set some program preferences. Under the Input menu, you can choose to set up SnagIt so that it captures the Full Screen, Window or just a Region you define. I keep mine on Region, which allows me to be flexible.
I also choose, under this window, for it not to include the cursor itself, which can muck up a nice printout.
So, now it's back to the Web site and the picture of the Merry-Go-Round museum.
To engage SnagIt, you press CTRL, SHIFT and P, and a small "+" sign will appear in place of your cursor. Put the "+" on the upper left corner of the image you want to capture, click down on the mouse, hold it and drag the mouse to the lower right corner of the image.
Let go of the mouse and the image will be captured inside a SnagIt Capture Preview window that appears on your screen.
If you like SnagIt and want to use it beyond the 45-day trial period, the shareware fee is $39.95.