Written byCiki Liu
How to Troubleshoot Screenshot Can't Be Saved Error on Mac?
Commonly, Mac users press the Command + Shift + 3 or Command + Shift + 4 key combinations to take a screenshot on Mac. When a screenshot is taken, you can perform multiple tasks on the image by right-clicking on it. However, some users find it unable to save the screenshot with one error message popping up.
Your screen shot can't be saved. You don't have permission to save files in the location where screen shots are stored.
How to fix the screenshot can't be saved issue? Depending on the reason that triggers this problem, this post will offer you three working solutions. Let's move forward.
Table of Contents:
- 1. Restart the Mac to fix the system glitch
- 2. Check and reset the screenshot folder with Terminal
- 3. Unlock the screenshot folder & enable full permissions
- 4. Adjust preference in third-party browsers or software
- 5. FAQs about Your Screenshot Can't Be Saved on Mac
Restart the Mac to fix the system glitch
The first thing you can do is to give your Mac a restart. By doing so, it's possible to fix some system glitches and prepare your macOS in an ideal status. Simply click on the Apple icon and select Restart.
Check and reset the screenshot folder with Terminal
Oftentimes, the screenshot can't be saved error is caused by the permission issue with the default folder that stores your screenshots. To begin with, you should find out where are your screenshots automatically saved. That's when Terminal comes in.
Check the screenshot location
Step 1. Bring out Terminal from Finder > Applications > Utilities.
Step 2. Enter the following commands and hit the return key.
defaults read com.apple.screencapture location
Step 3. You should see the path of the screenshot default folder. In most cases, it should be /Users/default/Desktop, which means the screenshots will be saved to your Mac Desktop.
Note: If you are seeing this message: defaults delete com.apple.ScreenCapture, means you have incorrect permissions or access to the screenshot folder.
Now you have two options to fix the screenshot can't be saved issue. One is to reset the screenshot location, and the other is to initialize the whole screenshot procedure.
Option 1. Reset the default screenshot folder
It's possible to fix the screenshot can't be saved issue by resetting the default screenshot folder and rebooting the system UI. Again, you are going to need the Terminal.
Step 1. Open Terminal and input the following prompts.
defaults write com.apple.screencapture location ~/Pictures
Note: You can replace Pictures with any location you prefer to save your screenshots, say, Documents, Downloads, and Desktop.
Step 2. Reboot the system UI by entering the commands below. Hit Enter afterward.
In this case, the macOS will restart your Mac menu bar and save the changes you make. Take a screenshot now, is the problem fixed?
Option 2. Restore macOS screen capture to default
Another way to fix the screenshot can't be saved error is removing all macOS screen capture configurations and restoring it to the default. You can have a fresh start to take screenshots on Mac then. All you need to do is enter the following command lines in Terminal and hit Enter.
defaults delete com.apple.ScreenCapture
After that, restart your Mac and see if the problem's solved.
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Unlock the screenshot folder & enable full permissions
If a folder is locked by the system, you won't be able to add any files to it until it's unlocked. So, perhaps the default screenshot folder is locked and that's why the screenshot is not working on Mac. To unlock a folder on Mac, you should:
Step 1. Go to the default screenshot folder which you can find from the method above.
Step 2. Right-click on the folder and choose Get Info from the context options.
Step 3. Under General, you should see the Locked option. Make sure the box is unchecked.
Or, you don't have read-write permission to the folder. You can keep scrolling down the Get Info list and find the Sharing & Permissions section. Under Privilege, make sure the folder is granted read-write access.
Adjust preference in third-party browsers or software
It's reported by users from the forum that Mozilla Firefox has a screenshot compatibility issue. Luckily, users can fix it by upgrading or downgrading to certain versions of Firefox to capture the screen freely, say, Firefox version 91 or 93. Alternatively, you can choose a different web browser such as Chrome and Safari.
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One more possibility is some third-party software, especially the one related to banking or accounting, has blocked screen capturing to prevent cyber fraud, online theft, etc. For example, if you've installed Trusteer Endpoint Protection (Rapport), you should go to Console > Security Policy > Block Screen Capturing and choose Never to fix the screenshot can't be saved error.
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After reading this post, you should know how to fix the screenshots can't be saved issue in four effective ways. You can restart the Mac, reset the default screenshot path, unlock the screenshot folder, and change settings in third-party programs. Do these solutions work for you? Leave a comment below!
FAQs about Your Screenshot Can't Be Saved on Mac
A system glitch, limited read-write access, locked screenshot folder, and third-party software’s screenshot blocking feature can all result in screenshot not saving on Mac.
Right-click on the default screenshot folder and choose Get Info. First, you should uncheck the Locked option. Then you should go to Sharing & Permissions and make sure the folder is read-write allowed.