The Free Windows 10 Desktop Screen Recorder

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I think most people by now should have upgraded to Windows 10 but many people still don’t realise that Windows 10 comes with its very own screen recording software.  This video capture tool was seemingly designed for recording Xbox games streamed on a PC but you can use it to record your own computer screen activity.  So, if you want a simple, free image and screen capture tool and you have Windows 10 you have one already.

Who knew!

Windows 10 Desktop Screen Recorder

The screen recording tool in Windows 10 is pretty much hidden if you don’t use the Xbox app because it was meant for recording games and it’s actually part of the Xbox app. So, to use the screen recording tool you will need to open the Xbox App and keep it running in the background.

(First, you’ll need to find the Xbox App if you’ve never used it, you may have it in your start menu or you can just search for it)

Then all you need to do is to press the Windows Key and the G key on your keyboard which the will bring up a message that says “Do you want to open Game Bar”.  You then click Yes this is a game.

Then the Game Bar comes up – it’s pretty self-explanatory and easy to use – we’ve mostly seen these icons before.

Windows 10 Desktop Screen Recorder

Game Bar

Push the red circle for recording and the black square (which comes up when you start recording) to stop the recording. Once you start recording the Game Bar minimises (red) in the top right-hand corner.  You need to click this to stop recording again, there is one problem sometimes when you click it, it completely disappears.  All you need to do if the game bar or the minimised bar disappears, is to hit Win + G again and the Game Bar will pop up again and you can then stop recording.

Screen recorded using the Windows 10 screen recording tool

Sample recording

Another annoying thing for some people might be that – you cannot see the mouse pointer on the recording, although you can see what is being clicked.

You can also take screenshot images by pressing the camera icon.

To find your recordings you can either go to the XBox app again and click Game DVR and there you will see your recordings.

Windows 10 Desktop Screen Recorder

Or you can go directly to This PC\Videos\Captures where you will find the videos and the images.

Sound recording

If you wish to add sound to your video – make sure you have switched it on in settings to enable the microphone.

Or just press  – Win + Alt + M

Talking of keyboard shortcuts there are a number of them as follows (which you can also change to your own keys in the Xbox app settings if you wish)

  • Record – Win + Alt + G
  • Start/Stop Recording – Win + Alt + R
  • Take screenshot – Win + Alt + PrtScn
  • Show/hide Recording Time – Win + Alt + T

This Windows 10 Desktop Screen Recorder is pretty good if you just want a quick screen capture or video but don’t expect to do anything too fancy.