April 14th, 2023 at 4:45 p.m. by Andreas Link – The push button on keyboards is often a long-forgotten fossil of the old days, which is only pressed every leap year. Microsoft now wants to change that with a Windows 11 update and is breathing new life into the head.
With so many keys in the classic ISO layout, one wonders what they actually do. The classics are the print button, the scroll button and the pause button. All are remnants of the ancient days, when computers didn’t multitask and command prompts dominated the user interface.
Microsoft is now taking pity and giving the print button a real use. In a new Windows 11 build in the Insider program, the Print key now launches the Windows 11 snipping tool and makes it easier to take screenshots. Some might remark that the key (along with the Windows key) has taken screenshots before, but that’s not always very helpful. Up to now, the entire screen was placed on the clipboard with a simple press; with win and print you can park the file in the pictures. In the end, however, it is always the entire screen area – with several monitors over the entire display field. Usually you have to rework it.
The snipping tool now gives you full control right away: active window, full screen, rectangular section or even a lasso. You can rudimentarily mark things and save or copy the screenshot if you wish. The snipping tool is probably still a bit too rudimentary for professionals, but they usually use third-party software anyway, which usually runs in the background and offers keyboard shortcuts.
It might be harder for some to still have a keyboard with a print key today. With 60% keyboards, there are usually no function keys anyway, and pressure is sometimes sacrificed with tenkeyless. This no longer corresponds to the ISO standard with 105 keys, but these days there are often slight deviations anyway.