Windows 11 Snipping Tool Not Working: 10 Possible Fixes

Users have reported several glitches with the snipping tool in Windows 11. Here are the fixes for you.

Featured Image Windows11 Snipping Tool Not Working Fixes

Are you facing issues with Snipping Tool not working in Windows 11? Microsoft replaced its classic screenshot grabber by merging its features with Snip & Sketch. The newer Windows 11 app looks like a simple change from Windows 10 but it is fraught with bugs. Users have reported various glitches, such as “the app can’t open” error or getting no response while grabbing screen caps. Here’s what you should do to make the app work properly.

How to Solve Windows 11 Snipping Tool Not Working Problem

The Snipping Tool error in Windows 11 can be traced to faulty security updates, expired digital certificates, or a missing folder/registry value. One of the following solutions will work to resolve the issue, as each one addresses a unique error source.

1. Check for Windows 11 Out-of-Band (OOB) Updates

For most users, the primary source of the Snipping Tool Windows 11 problem can be traced to Microsoft itself. They have pinpointed the issue to an expired digital certificate dated October 31, 2021.

Solution: the universal solution to Snipping Tool not working in Windows 11 issue is the “Out-of-band (OOB)” update: a non-security Microsoft patch introduced past scheduled release dates. One of them is KB5008295, but you should always opt for the latest OOB patches when they’re announced.

  1. From the Start menu search, look for “Windows Update” and check for the latest updates, even if it shows “Your PC is updated.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Check For Updates
  1. Wait for the latest updates to install on your Windows 11 PC, which will cover any patches pertaining to the problem.
  2. Restart your device and check whether you can work with the Snipping Tool.
Snipping Tool Win11 Updates Installing

2. Disable Automatic Time Temporarily and Reset Its Manual Value

This is another common source of the Snipping Tool error, with a solution provided by the Microsoft Tech Community. If your Snipping Tool app is breaking in Windows 11 and unable to grab screenshots, then you may have a wrong date/time issue related to the app’s digital certificates.

Solution: you need to temporarily change your date and time from automatic to manual and go back to automatic once the error is gone.

  1. Go to “Settings -> Time & Language -> Date & Time.”
  2. Turn off the toggle switch for “Set time automatically.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Time Change Manually
  1. Select “Change” from the “Set the date and time manually” option.
  1. Regardless of the current date, change the date manually to October 30, 2021. Leave the time section as is.
  2. Check whether the Snipping Tool is working. If it is doing fine, switch back to automatic timing in “Set time automatically.” The correct latest date will show on your computer.
Snipping Tool Win11 Change Date And Time

3. Run the Windows 11 Snipping Tool Directly from “Windows.old” Folder

Another recognized problem happens to people who have upgraded to Windows 11 from Windows 10. The Snipping Tool located in the “Windows.old” folder is still left behind. Launching the latest Windows 11 Snipping Tool application may cause it to crash.

Solution: it is more of a workaround than a solution. You can continue using the Snipping Tool application in the “Windows.old” folder to grab screenshots in Windows 11.

  1. On your C drive, you should be able to see the “Windows.old” folder. If you don’t find it there, proceed to the other solutions in the list.
Snipping Tool Win11 Windowsold Folder
  1. Search for an application file called “Snipping” in the Windows 11 file and folder search menu.
  2. Open the application file from its original location. You will be directed to the folder where the older Snipping Tool is located.
  3. Pin the Snipping Tool application file to the Start menu or save the entire folder to your Windows 11 taskbar. With a new Windows update, the old folder issues should be resolved entirely.
Snipping Tool Win11 Pin To Start 3

4. Enable Auto Copy to Clipboard in Snipping Tool Settings

Auto copy to clipboard is an essential function when you’re copy-pasting anything on your computer. In the case of Snipping Tool, it should automatically copy-paste the image. If you find your Snipping Tool open fine but is not copy-pasting anything, try this fix below.

Solution: enable “Auto Copy to Clipboard” from “Windows 11 Snipping Tool Settings.”

  1. Open and launch the Snipping Tool. Click the three-dot option in the end to select settings for the program.
Snipping Tool Win11 Snipping Settings
  1. Make sure the “Auto copy to clipboard” toggle is turned on. While the other toggles in the menu can be turned off to suit your needs, the “Auto copy to clipboard” option should always be kept on.
Snipping Tool Win11 Snipping Auto Copy Clipboard

5. Turn Background App Permissions on to Take Pictures

Does your Snipping Tool app even have the required access permissions to take pictures as a background app? Sometimes, due to a faulty update, this access needs to be manually provided, otherwise the image won’t be captured by the Snipping Tool object memory.

Solution: turn background app permissions on for Snipping Tool from “Advanced app settings.”

  1. On your Windows 11 device, go to “Settings -> Apps -> Snipping Tool -> Advanced Settings.” This will take you to the “Apps & features” section of the Snipping Tool.
  2. Ensure the app permissions for the pictures are turned on. Further, enable background app permissions as “Power optimized” or “Always.”
Snipping Tool Win11 App Permissions Pictures On

6. Set Keyboard Print Screen Key to Launch Snipping Tool

For those struggling with faulty update issues in Windows 11 Snipping Tool, a nice workaround is to set the Print Screen key on your keyboard to serve as the default launch button for Snipping Tool. It will save you from typing the sequence Win + Shift + S  to launch the Snipping Tool.

Solution: change the Print Screen (PrtScn) command to launch Snipping Tool options.

  1. Open and launch Snipping Tool. Select the three-dot menu to open Settings.
  2. In the Settings menu, select “Print screen shortcut” and “Change in settings.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Prtscn Shortcut
  1. You will see a “Did you mean to switch apps?” notification when Snipping Tool is trying to open Settings. Click “Yes” to proceed.
Snipping Tool Win11 Switch Apps 1
  1. Turn the toggle on for “Use the Print Screen button to open screen snipping.” You can now select various screenshot grabbing options, such as Freeform Snip, Rectangular Snip, and Full Screen Snipping, directly from the PrtScn button on your keyboard.
Snipping Tool Win11 Printscreen For Snipping

7. Uninstall and Reinstall Snipping Tool

Is your Snipping Tool aborting suddenly on launch? Due to a faulty update or issues in the Windows.old folder (see above section), it is possible that the Snipping Tool may be improperly installed. The flawed installation may cause the program to abort and should be undone.

Solution: replace the defective Snipping Tool application program file with the latest version of the tool.

  1. To uninstall the Snipping Tool program in Windows 11, select “Add or remove programs” from the Start menu search or in the Control Panel.
Snipping Tool Win11 Add Remove Programs
  1. Scroll down to the Snipping Tool app, and from its three-dot menu, select “Uninstall” to proceed with the removal.
Snipping Tool Win11 Uninstall Snipping Tool
  1. After uninstalling the Snipping Tool in Windows 11, you can reinstall it from “Snip & Sketch” in Microsoft Store. (The program shows as “Snip & Sketch” in Windows 10 and as “Snipping Tool” in Windows 11.)
Snipping Tool Win11 Reinstalled

8. Repair and Reset Snipping Tool App

Close on the heels of uninstalling Snipping Tool in Windows 11, you can attempt to repair and reset the app. This will fix any newly found issues in the app’s processes as shown below.

Solution : the Reset and Repair jobs should be periodically done in Snipping Tool to ensure the app is in healthy condition.

  1. Go to “Settings -> Apps -> Snipping Tool -> Advanced options.” It will open the “Apps & features” menu.
Snipping Tool Win11 Advanced Options
  1. Navigate to the “Reset” menu and click “Repair.” Wait a few seconds for the for it to be repaired.
Snipping Tool Win11 Repairing
  1. If there are no outstanding issues, you should notice a checkmark next to the Repair button as shown below.
Snipping Tool Win11 Repaired
  1. Repeat the same procedure for the Reset button. Once the issues have been resolved, the Snipping Tool should work properly.
Snipping Tool Win11 Reset Done

9. Use Local Group Policy Editor in Windows 11 to Enable Snipping Tool

Sometimes you may find the Snipping Tool not working in Windows 11 despite nothing being wrong with the update, as there may be some deep policy settings on your device, which have disabled the Snipping Tool without you noticing.

Solution : Windows 11 advanced administrator settings have a Local Group Policy Editor that helps undo any policies you don’t want on your device.

  1. Go to the “Run” menu using  WinR. Type “gpedit.msc” to launch the “Local Group Policy Editor.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Gpeditmsc
  1. Scroll down to “Tablet PC -> Accessories” and click on the setting option “Do not allow Snipping Tool to run” to evaluate its status.
Snipping Tool Win11 Tablet Pc Accessories Do Not Snipping
  1. If the dialog box shows that “Do not allow Snipping Tool to run” has been “Enabled,” you need to change it to “Disabled.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Disabled Do Not Allow

10. Registry Hack to Enable Snipping Tool

Apart from the Local Group Policy Editor on your device, you can also use a minor registry tweak to kickstart the Snipping Tool on your Windows 11 device. This is helpful for those scenarios when you just don’t see the Snipping Tool application tool and folder in your File Explorer.

Solution: set a new key and DWORD value for the Snipping Tool in Registry Editor to restart the app.

  1. Go to the “Run” menu using  WinR. Type “regedit” to launch the “Registry Editor” on your screen.
Snipping Tool Win11 Regedit
  1. Go down the following path in your Registry Editor: “Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft.”
  2. Right-click on Microsoft to select a new key and name it “TabletPC.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Reg Microsoft Policies
  1. Select the newly created “TabletPC” key and right-click to add a new DWORD (32-bit) value. Call it “DisableSnippingTool.”
Snipping Tool Win11 Policies Tabletpc Dwordvalue
  1. Right-click to edit the above DWORD (32-bit) value string and set it as “0.” The default value is “1,” which would disable the Snipping Tool.

Note: try this last method only if the Snipping Tool is not visible on your system.

Snipping Tool Win11 Policies Dwordvalue 0

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why does my computer freeze when I use Snipping Tool?

If your PC freezes when using Snipping Tool, it indicates the possibility of corrupt graphics drivers. To fix the problem, start Command Prompt in Administrator mode and run sfc/Scannow followed by DISM.exe.

Once the outdated drivers have been identified through a system scan, you can open them from Device Management (devmgmt.msc in Run menu.) Update and reinstall the drivers as directed on your Command Prompt screen.

2. What are the alternatives to Snipping Tool in Windows 11?

In Windows 11, Snip & Sketch has been merged with Snipping Tool. There are a few other free and paid screenshot grabbing options you can use:

3. How do I capture a scrolling screenshot in Windows 11?

To capture a scrolling screenshot in Windows 11/10, you can use an app like PicPic. The detailed steps to use the app have been covered in this tutorial along with grabbing screenshots across an entire Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge or Firefox page. You can also take a screenshot with the mouse cursor on in Windows.

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