Useful Screenshot and Screen Recording tools to capture on-screen behavior

This is a list of useful programs/applications that you can use to help capture screen activity when reporting bugs and troubleshooting with Brave Support.

This page has also been made a “Wiki” page so that anyone with a useful tool or tip can add it to the list. A few ground rules to stick by when adding resources:

  1. All the tools listed here should be free and/or open source.
  2. Always include a link to the to the creator/developer’s website.
  3. Try to pick tools and software that are easiest to use and quickest to setup. Users of all skill levels and backgrounds roam Community – the idea of this thread is to make the support process easier.
  4. No tom-foolery! This thread serves one purpose only – any edits that deviate from that purpose will be deleted and the user flagged.

Screen Recording

LICEcap
(Windows, macOS)
Free, open source application used to capture and record screen activity. Many Brave employees use this due to its simplicity and quick production. Appears to be Catalina-compatible despite reports of incompatibility (see post below for more info).

How to use Licecap:
  1. Once installed, launch LICEcap and resize the window frame as desired.
  2. Hit Record and choose a destination for the file output.
  3. After the pre-roll countdown (you can turn this on/off/change it’s length in LICEcap settings), any screen activity that occurs inside the window frame will be captured.
  4. Hit Stop when you’re done recording and the recording you just took will automatically be saved to the destination you selected in .gif format.
If LICEcap on macOS gives black boxes:

Comment by hnktong
Today (16 Jan 2020) my LICEcap started recording all black on macOS 10.14.6. Mucking about I got it working again, but I’m not positive that anything I did actually fixed it. If you don’t want to bother with the stuff below, try Kap, or if you haven’t upgraded to 10.15/Catalina, try GIPHY Capture, which is used pretty much the same way as LICEcap. It’s very intuitive and easy.

To get LICEcap to stop it with the black boxes, several “fixes” are floating out there based on this article and some additional research:

  1. Try to free up RAM by quitting things, including background processes using Activity Monitor. (It might be a memory issue, but this is disputed.)
  2. Try using LICEcap on only your main display/monitor. (This as cause is disputed because of reports from MacBook users getting black recordings with no external monitor attached, but the code for the capture window uses mainDevice all over the place, so can’t hurt to try using your main monitor if you have more than one.)
  3. Try giving LICEcap control under Accessibility. The thought is that LICEcap might be refused access by the process you’re trying to record. If you want to give Accessibility a shot (based on 10.14.6 so your interface might differ a bit):
              i. Open System Preferences, click Security & Privacy, click the Privacy tab.
              ii. Click Accessibility in the list on the left, click the lock in the bottom left to make changes, and enter password.
              iii. Click the + button under the app list on the right, find LICEcap in the Applications folder with the dialog that pops up, select it, and click OK/Select.

Kap
(macOS)

Open source Kap has more features than LICEcap without being much more complicated to use, yet is still free. Kap can record a selected rectangular area, a specific window of an application, or an entire screen in GIF, MP4, WebM, or APNG.

More info about Kap

Discovered when reports suggested that LICEcap 1.29 was not Catalina-compatible, Kap enables you to designate a particular rectangular area to record, select a specific window of an application, or record an entire screen in GIF, MP4, WebM, or APNG. For this forum, GIF is preferred, though MP4 can be used. Kap was just updated in December 2019, is built with javascript/Electron, and includes plugins/API that allow sharing via a bunch of cloud services, though none are required. Its project page on github has additional information.

How to use Kap (like LICEcap):
  1. Once installed, launch Kap. It will sit in your menu bar and will show in your Dock, too.
    image image

  2. Select some defaults by right-clicking the menu bar icon and selecting “Preferences…” Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 10.40.07 AM
    You can choose whether to show the pointer/cursor, highlight clicks, use keyboard shortcuts, and hide desktop icons. The Plugins tab allows connection to a bunch of cloud services.
    image

  3. Click the menu bar icon to invoke the recording interface.

  4. Select the crop icon (leftmost) for area selection, the window button (to right of crop icon) to select application/window, or full screen button (to right of red circle record button). Area selection will highlight the last-used or default rectangle that can be dragged and resized. The right-most icon (the three dots) calls the menu you get by right-clicking the menu bar, including Preferences.

  5. Hit “Record” button (center circle). The screen will remain darkened for a few seconds as a countdown so you can get to what you want recorded. Once it lightens, proceed with what you want recorded. You might have to switch to the application to be recorded (true in LICEcap, too). Note that the menu bar icon will have a dot in it to indicate recording. image

  6. Click the menu bar icon to stop recording. The recording you just took will be presented in an Editor window. Here you designate desired export dimensions (WxH in pixels), FPS, format, and where/how to save/share the movie, hitting “Export” when satisfied. For upload here, keep the final file size under 4MB by lowering FPS to 5-15, export width/height under 600, and use GIF (I’ve gotten away with 6MB, but try not to push it). For example, this demo is a 10 FPS, 600x299 GIF for 1.7MB:
    Kap Editor Orig Redo
    Here are stills:

  7. An Exports window will appear showing progress. When done, click the entry of the file to open a Finder window or click the preview to access the original.
    image

Peek
(Linux - many distros)
Note: There is a macOS application called Peek, but it is NOT the same one.

Free, open source application used to capture and record screen activity. It works almost exactly like LICEcap, maybe even easier. Installation varies with distro, but the website includes instructions for many distros. In addition to animated GIFs, it can record in APNG, WebM, and MP4 formats. You can change default format in Preferences (accessed by clicking Peek icon in upper left of Peek window).

How to use Peek:
  1. Once installed, launch Peek and resize the window frame as desired and select output format if you don’t want it in GIF.
  2. Hit Record.
  3. After the pre-roll countdown (you can turn this on/off/change it’s length in Peek settings), any screen activity that occurs inside the window frame will be captured.
  4. Hit Stop when you’re done recording. Peek will render the recording.
  5. Choose a destination for the file output. The recording will be saved to the destination you selected in .gif format.

ScreenShot+Record Desktop Applet
(Linux - not sure how many distros, but at least in Ubuntu-based with Panel)
Free, open source applet used to take screenshots and capture and record screen activity. A little camera icon sits in your panel and you click it when you want to use it. My guess it it simply invokes some built-in functions from a convenient access point and adding some scripting.

How to Get/Use ScreenShot+Record Desktop Applet:
  1. Install prerequisites: open a terminal (Ctrl-Alt-T) and enter the command
    apt install ffmpeg xdotool x11-utils.
  2. Right-click your panel, select Applets.
  3. Click Download button at top of Applets window and type Screenshot+Record in the search box.
  4. Click install (down arrow), go through whatever procedure it yields, and the icon should show up when you’re done.
    image
  5. To use, click the camera icon and select what you want to do.
    AppletDemo
  6. When your selected method of capture is done, if it’s a screenshot you’ll be prompted to copy to clipboard or save it, and if it’s a recording, it should be saved in your Pictures/Videos folder. Be sure so install ffmpeg, xdotool, and x11-utils per the instructions on the web site.

Screenshot/Capture

The default Print Screen function on your system is perfectly suited for this task. macOS and Windows 10 both have the ability to capture the whole screen, active window, or area you specify, plug both allow you to annotate/edit, designate custom save location, copy to clipboard, and more. However, if you’re looking for something not built-in, possibly with more functionality, there are a couple other options out there you may want to try:

Lightshot Screenshot
(MacOS)
Free, open source screen capture application that comes with additional features (pretty much the same as the OS builds in with Shift-Cmd-4), such as:

  • Drag-and-drop resizing of the capture area as opposed to capturing the entire screen. This eliminates the need to crop your image separately once its captured.
  • Annotation tools to mark the captured screenshot directly without leaving the app.
  • Easily copy or save the image directly from app

Snipper Tool
(Windows)
This tool comes standard on the Windows 7, 8/8.1, and 10 Operating Systems and is surprisingly powerful. Additional features include:

  • Allows user to select type of screen they’d like to capture (whole screen, specific window, etc)
  • Built-in annotation tools and button to open the image in Windows Paint 3D program for further editing if desired.
  • Easy to save or copy/paste directly from app

ShareX
(Windows)
Free, open source tool to capture full screen or regions, record video and gif and allows you to upload the capture area or video for easy sharing. The capture process can also be task driven to automate parts of the process.

22 Likes

You could search your package manager or equivalent, or use apt or equivalent, for screen capture, but I tried https://alternativeto.net/software/licecap/?platform=linux and found this thing (Peek) that appears to be very like LICEcap from its description:
https://github.com/phw/peek

It has Fedora install instructions here:

I’m going to try it in a VM, but I’m thinking this might need to be added to the list in the base article since it looks so much like LICEcap but for Linux, and lots of distros. It has an Ubuntu package, has instructions for Debian, Fedora, elementaryOS, and many others, and links additional packages:

Edit: I went ahead and added Peek after trying it in Solus 4 Budgie. Here’s the test video I took:

5 Likes

macOS 10.15.x Catalina users: There were reports that LICEcap did not yet work on macOS 10.15.x Catalina. @hnktong tested and it seems fine, but looked into 64-bit alternatives …

LICEcap 1.29 was released 18 Feb 2019, so you’d think it would be 64-bit ready, and indeed @hnktong has it working in 10.15.2, so maybe those reports are due to other factors. Maybe it’s one holdover library or something borking it in some installs.

I will try all of these again to see if they work in Catalina (unless noted otherwise, they all did in 10.14.6 and expect they will be fine). If you try one, please let me know how it turns out. Here are the applications I’ve tested so far, after weeding out obvious no-gos from searches on MacUpdate and elsewhere:

  • Kap - @hnktong’s new favorite. I really like this one a LOT. It’s free, has more features than LICEcap without being much more complicated, was just updated in December 2019, built with javascript/Electron; project page on github, is Catalina compatible, and includes plugins that allow sharing via a bunch of cloud services, though none are required. Keep final file size under 4MB and you’re gold.
  • GIFox - free version limited to 10 seconds and adds watermark; Pro version costs $15, is definitely Catalina compatible; if you can do it in 10 seconds or less, go for it
More info about Kap

Kap
(macOS)

Open source Kap has more features than LICEcap without being much more complicated to use, yet is still free. Kap can record a selected rectangular area, a specific window of an application, or an entire screen in GIF, MP4, WebM, or APNG.

Discovered when reports suggested that LICEcap 1.29 was not Catalina-compatible, Kap enables you to designate a particular rectangular area to record, select a specific window of an application, or record an entire screen in GIF, MP4, WebM, or APNG. For this forum, GIF is preferred, though MP4 can be used. Kap was just updated in December 2019, is built with javascript/Electron, and includes plugins/API that allow sharing via a bunch of cloud services, though none are required. Its project page on github has additional information.

How to use Kap (like LICEcap, more like Peek (see below)):
  1. Once installed, launch Kap. It will sit in your menu bar and will show in your Dock, too.
    image image

  2. Select some defaults by right-clicking the menu bar icon and selecting “Preferences…” Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 10.40.07 AM
    You can choose whether to show the pointer/cursor, highlight clicks, use keyboard shortcuts, and hide desktop icons. The Plugins tab allows connection to a bunch of cloud services.
    image

  3. Click the menu bar icon to invoke the recording interface.

  4. Select the crop icon (leftmost) for area selection, the window button (to right of crop icon) to select application/window, or full screen button (to right of red circle record button). Area selection will highlight the last-used or default rectangle that can be dragged and resized. The right-most icon (the three dots) calls the menu you get by right-clicking the menu bar, including Preferences.

  5. Hit “Record” button (center circle). The screen will remain darkened for a few seconds as a countdown so you can get to what you want recorded. Once it lightens, proceed with what you want recorded. You might have to switch to the application to be recorded (true in LICEcap, too). Note that the menu bar icon will have a dot in it to indicate recording. image

  6. Click the menu bar icon to stop recording. The recording you just took will be presented in an Editor window. Here you designate desired export dimensions (WxH in pixels), FPS, format, and where/how to save/share the movie, hitting “Export” when satisfied. For upload here, keep the final file size under 4MB by lowering FPS to 5-15, export width/height under 600, and use GIF (I’ve gotten away with 6MB, but try not to push it). For example, this demo is a 10 FPS, 600x299 GIF for 1.7MB:
    Kap Editor Orig Redo
    Here are stills:

  7. An Exports window will appear showing progress. When done, click the entry of the file to open a Finder window or click the preview to access the original.
    image

Other Stand-alone Applications

  • InstaGiffer - free and cross-platform, but appears not to have been updated in a while, GUI elements broken, hard to say whether it’s Catalina-compatible. Plus, the links to the downloads are broken, but I acquired them from archive.org: Mac installer and Windows installer. Those are painfully slow, so I may e-mail the author and ask if I can stick them on
  • GIFCapture - free; I can’t tell if it’s 64-bit, but I plan to contact the developer; there’s also a discussion here
  • CaptureGif - costs $6, but appears to be Catalina compatible (cites 64-bit processor as required)

Cloud Services
They’re free, but they require accounts and/or automatically upload your stuff and/or use web servers to process the files. Here are a few that seem viable, though there are a lot more out there:

  • Record It - free, doesn’t appear to require sign-up, relies on web service, uploads there, basically appears to stream to their converter and give you a link for sharing or to download
  • CloudApp - Free Plan - free, but requires sign-up, which I wasn’t willing to do so I’ve not tested; it’s 64-bit; requires granting permissions for recording (I’m guessing all of these apps will whether they know it or not)
  • Jumpshare - free plan should be adequate for typical Brave Community contributor; requires account to use
  • Gyazo - appears to be free, has still and animated versions, but appears to stream/upload your stuff to their servers like RecordIt; I downloaded GyazoGIF to try, launched it, and it’s not clear that anything actually happened (maybe because no account?); plus, no info about 64-bit I can see
  • GIPHY Capture - free, but at present also appears to be broken on Catalina
3 Likes

I’m looking for a good replacement for Expression Encoder and Screen Capture. I’ve used it with my dreamspark subscribtion. It’s discontinued, but great software. VidMate Shareit

2 Likes

@alfred0809, Microsoft Expression Encoder?

Did you try:

  • Captura
  • Obs Studio
  • FastStone Capture

The free version of Expression Encoder will continue to exist, though. It’ll be available for download, but it will be no longer developed.

3 Likes

I would like to contribute to this excellent topic by listing a few screen recording apps meant for Android users.

Brave is my primary browser on Android, and I ♥️ it.

I first use Brave mainly on my Android device & the capacity to take a video of what’s going on the screen can be absolutely useful anyway! (not just to record bugs & issues.)

The majority of listed apps are free although some have some bonus (paid) options.
I chose those who are free for their basic function of - recording a video.

Some are even completely free and open source, like MNML.

Listed in no specific order.
Tap the app name to see the description.
Google Play Store link (URL) is included for each. -

AZ Screen Recorder

AZ screen recorder lets you record your screen to HD and FullHD videos, no time limit, and no watermarks. It can record audio from the mic and users can even pause while recording. The recorder is totally free with an option to upgrade to get extended features like a video editor, countdown timer, etc.

URL: AZ Screen Recorder ๑ Google Play

Screen Recorder (by Kimcy929)

Screen Recorder by Kimcy929 is a good, simple screen recorder. It does the basics quite well and has support for several languages. Some of the features include recording the screen, taking screenshots, support for the phone cameras, and some basic video editing at the end of your recording.

URL: Screen Recorder ๑ GP

ScreenCam

ScreenCam is a free and open-source Android app to record screen using native API and without root.

URL: ScreenCam ๑ Play Store

MNML Screen Recorder

Other screen recorders have ads, not-so-pretty user interfaces, too many settings, or all of the above. MNML aims to fix this problem by providing a beautiful and easy-to-use experience that doesn’t overwhelm you.

MNML is completely free, and open source.

URL: MNML ๑ Google Play

ApowerREC

As a cross-platform screen recorder, ApowerREC can be used to record a full HD screen or record camera along with a screen simultaneously. This app allows you to record games, live streams, video chats, and other screen activities easily and it has a great ability to keep videos synchronized with audio.

URL: ApowerREC ๑ Google :arrow_forward:

Different approach.
If you already have a screen recorder on your Desktop (Mac or even laptop) you can use screencast and record from there. (the device you’re casting to.)

One app that doesn’t actually do the capture on the Android phone but instead casts to another device (from where you can do the actual capture), is:

Vysor (by Clockwork Mod)

Vysor is a fun little app that allows you to cast your device to your computer screen over USB. From there, you can use it on your computer or screen record it on your PC if you’d like to. This app doesn’t record anything on its own so don’t expect any options to do so. You’ll have to record it on your computer on your own.

URL: Vysor by ClockworkMod

A similar approach (cast then capture) can also be achieved with TeamViewer (for Android).

Let me know which one you use. And ofc, feel free to mention the alternatives.

Happy recording! :record_button:

PS. & a bit of “fun” to spice it up:

If you're a fan of the horror genre...

… I can highly recommend watching the original - REC (2007) film directed by Jaume Balagueró:movie_camera:

Connection (association) with this topic is self-explanatory, as we’re discussing recording. :wink:

4 Likes

I just share some free or open source screen recorder that I know:
OBS - Windows, Mac, Linux
Ezvid - Windows
Ultra screen recorder - Windows
CamStudio - Windows
ShareX - Windows
Apowersoft - free online launcher

2 Likes

Thank you, @YuliaM. It’s great to have additional options. I actually use ShareX on my Windows machine and have found it to be excellent. It may be overkill for many users, but has a lot of options and power.

2 Likes

Thx… it is kinda hard to find software for Mac and most of them are not free. Still haven’t find an app which will suit me

@AlexBackers,
You can use the macOS built-in screen recording/capture tools:

3 Likes

Thank you, @Mattches, I didn’t know that one. :smiley:

2 Likes

Hi, I want to share a new screen recorder tool that you haven’t include it in the list yet.

It is EaseUS RecExperts , a simple yet multipurpose screen recorder for Windows and Mac.

  • Record full screen or any selected area of screen

  • Record Microphone or/and system sound

  • Record game and webcam

  • Annotation tool and built-in media play to preview recordings

  • Take screenshot and make gif

  • No watermark and recording time limit

2 Likes