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Screen Capture in ProCare

Ever wanted to take a screen shot of something in ProCare or anything else on your computer? Perhaps you’d like to make a print out showing what categories you created for child tracking, tuition descriptions or something similar. This is a request we hear from time to time and it’s really quite easy to do. In this article we’ll talk about using reports, windows built-in screen capture, free screen capture software and more advanced image organizing software.  

ProCare Accounting ReportsScreen Capture or Report?

First, ask yourself if you really want a screen shot or would a ProCare report be more appropriate? For example let’s say you wanted a list of all the charge, credit and payment descriptions you’ve created in Family Accounting Setup. Although you could take screen shots of each category – it may end up being a lot of separate screen shots, especially if you have many descriptions and need to keep scrolling down to see them. In this particular case there’s a standard ProCare report that shows all the accounting descriptions. You’ll find it under General Reports > Accounting > Letter J – Billing Box > Charge/Credit Descriptions.

Edit Screen Capture in MS PaintWindows Screen Capture

If you decide a screen capture is best for your needs, the easiest thing to do is use the screen capture keystroke that is built right in to Windows. Just open the screen you wish to capture. Then, on your keyboard, hold down the Ctrl key and while you’re holding it press the Print Screen key at the same time. You won’t see anything happen, but your entire screen has just been copied to the Windows clipboard. Next, open a word processor or a paint program and choose Edit > Paste. The image will appear. If you use a paint program (like MS Paint – usually found under Start > Programs > Accessories > Paint) you can then edit the image by cropping it, drawing on it, etc.

ScreenHunter 5Third Party Capture Utilities

There are also a number of good screen capture programs, made by other companies, that are either free or very low cost. For this article I tried out one called ScreenHunter 5 from Wisdom-soft which is available for free at http://www.wisdom-soft.com/downloads/downloadfiles.htm. There are several versions listed. You’ll want to scroll down to the Free Programs part of the page and choose ScreenHunter 5.0 Free. When you install it you may want to uncheck the option of installing the Wisdom-soft toolbar. Many of you may already use the Google or Yahoo toolbar – no need to install yet another one.

I liked ScreenHunter 5. It gives you several options for how you want to capture something. You can select Full Screen (similar to using Ctrl+PrintScrn on the keyboard), or choose a Rectangular Area where you can click and drag the area of the screen you want captured. There is also an option to capture the Active Window – just the window currently displayed on screen – which is a nice feature. You may want to change the default image type from .gif, which has low color resolution, to .jpg, which allows for True Color (24 bit). By default all captures are saved to your desktop, but you can change this to a folder of your choice, if you prefer.

ACDSee Photo ManagerImage & Photo Organizing Software

If you want more capabilities like organizing images and photos, cropping, resizing, color adjustment, etc. along with the ability to do screen captures, there are many good options as well. I personally like ACDSee 10 Photo Manager, which I use almost every day, to organize images for this blog as well as the entire ProCare Web and Support Site. It’s low cost (about $30) and can handle images (like screen shots) as well as photos from your digital camera. A great tool if you want to organize photos from Kindergarten graduation or a field trip. You can even create a fun slide show or screen saver.

Happy screen capturing and until next time, cheers!

-Phil

P.S. The opinions expressed on third party software are solely my own, based on personal experience. I have absolutely no affiliation with Wisdom-soft or ACDSee. I just happen to like their software and find it useful. As I said, there are many good options – you may want to check around on your own.

If you have questions or comments about this article (or suggestions for another article) I’d be pleased to hear from you. Drop me at note at phil@procaresoftware.com.

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