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python screenshot

Project description

The pyscreenshot module can be used to copy the contents of the screen to a PIL image memory or file. Replacement for the ImageGrab Module, which works on Windows only.

Pyscreenshot tries to allow to take screenshots without installing 3rd party libraries. It is cross-platform but useful for Linux based distributions. It is only a pure Python wrapper, a thin layer over existing back-ends. Its strategy should work on most Linux distributions: a lot of back-ends are wrapped, if at least one exists then it works, if not then one back-end should be installed. Performance and interactivity are not important for this library.
Known problems:
  • not implemented: Capturing an active window
  • different back-ends generate slightly different images from the same desktop, this should be investigated
  • ImageMagick creates blackbox on some systems
  • PyGTK back-end does not check $DISPLAY -> not working with Xvfb
  • slow: 0.2s - 0.7s
Similar projects:



import pyscreenshot as ImageGrab

# fullscreen

# part of the screen

# to file



  • install pip

  • install PIL

  • install at least one back-end

  • install the program:

    # as root
    pip install pyscreenshot


sudo apt-get install python-pip
sudo pip install pyscreenshot
sudo apt-get install python-imaging
# optional back-ends
sudo apt-get install scrot
sudo apt-get install imagemagick
sudo apt-get install python-gtk2
sudo apt-get install python-qt4
# optional for examples
sudo pip install entrypoint2


# as root
pip uninstall pyscreenshot

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