The Complete Guide to Screen Shots


From time to time I am asked: “How do I take screen shots and submit them to Bluegrass?”    This article will explain how I do it and describe the tool I use. 


Taking a screen shot is a lot like photography.  The best pictures are the result of planning your shot, getting an interesting subject and lighting.  Most Flight Sim shots are taken from the spot plane or tower view.  It helps to have the sun at a good angle to light the aircraft.  Of course there are times that you may want to take a picture of the aircraft flying into the sun or sunset.    The other category of screen shot is the panel view.   I like to use that to show off modifications I have made to panels, or what a great pilot I am while making a difficult approach.  (that last part is tongue in cheek, or is it foot in mouth)   But, I would caution you that panel shots can become boring to the viewer.  If every screen shot you send is a panel shot of you on final, and the only difference is the airport you are landing at, you will probably be one of the few that enjoy the show.    Keep in mind that the viewer probably will want to know what aircraft you are flying.  So if you only submit one screen shot, include the Aircraft  i.e.  DC-3, C-195  etc in the filename.


  1. Snap the picture


To capture the image, press the “Print Screen” key.  On most keyboards it is to the right of Function 12 along the top row of keys.


When that key is pressed it copies the image on the screen into a buffer.   It would be possible at this time to minimize Flight Simulator and open up Paint, then click Edit….Paste and then save the image to a file.  At that point you can maximize flight sim and get ready to snap a new image.   Every time you click “Print Screen” the buffer is overwritten with the current image.  When you turn off your computer the image in the buffer is erased.


  1. Using YAFSScreen


A program is available that will automatically save your images while you continue to fly and take more pictures.  YAFSScreen a.k.a. “Yet another Flight Sim Screen Saver” will save the images where and how you specify in the program.


Here is my set up screen.   The Saver Active box is checked, so as long as YAFSS is running, every time “Print Screen” is pressed a file is created.   The files are saved to the path C:\bga\Screen Shots\without thumbs

You might set your path simply to C:\Screen Shots

The files created are named YAFSS001, YAFSS002  etc.

Images are sized at 900 pixels wide and saved as JPEG files with about 50% quality.

(Since I took the screenshot below, I have changed the image width to 800 pixels)



The reason for the size and quality is for the screen shot to fit on most monitors without the need for scrolling, and to keep the time waiting for the picture to load to a minimum for people using dial up connections.


YAFSScreen is a free program.  Get it at:



  1. Hosting the files


Upload the screenshot to an on-line host, such as

The files should be set for size of 800 x 600 so that they will show up in the forum without having to scroll to the right to see the entire image.


Luke bgan021 prefers to use Geocities for screenshot posting.  Here are his instructions:


You need to create an account through

You can sign up for a free account. It's also anonymous and you only have to

give them what details you wish.


Getting started.


1 To store your pictures and be able to view them as a webpage, you need to up-load.

Yahoo also offer photostorage which is a different thing and in-appropriate for screen-shot posting purposes.

You will get 10mb free to use.

2 First sign in once you have your account. Click on manage in the geocities front page.

3 Choose easy upload.

4 Click browse to upload pictures in jpg format. The upload stack gives you room to upload 5 files, however

the `add more files' option lets you upload 10 pictures. Make sure to click the box that automatically converts file-names

to lowercase.

5 Click upload files.

6 You may view your uploaded files by typing the following

for instance my user account is bgan021 because I wanted something original. I wish to post a picture called

`baron58splat' I would upload it and type in the address

Now I'm ready to post.

I open bluegrass screenshot forum in a new window and click reply to the monthly message ie:post june screenshots here

You can change the title of your message and it will show up in this thread still.

to put the baron shot in I would then type [img] This is a meta-tag which tells the webpage to load the next text as a file.

[/img] ends the meta-tag. I feel the need to explain this so you know what youre doing. Even in the sub-programming of

games, meta-tags tell the game how to read the information.

So I either copy the address from the geocities picture in between my tags or write them in as such


Don't leave any spaces between anything. The whole thing should be one word. You can write messages about the pictures

as long as they are outside the tags. I usually leave a couple of lines between the pictures and the message.


I hope this helps you. It may look hard but the first time you do it and it works, you will see how easy it is.

The great thing about using geocities is you don't need to download anything to use it. There are also tools

for building your own free page but  I'm only concerned about posting screen-shots.


Have fun, Luke.




  1. Entering the link into the Bluegrass Screenshots Forum


Click on “Bluegrass Screenshots” then “Start new topic  The subject should be something about your pictures, such as KLEX-KMEM if your pictures relate to a flight from Lexington to Memphis.


[img]then copy and paste the link for the picture here, then [/img].  


You can post several pictures all relating to the same subject.



Use everything you see in the brackets.  Pictures should be in the JPG format before you upload them.  To see an example of how this will work you can go to then click on forums and scroll down to the Screenshots section to look at the Piedmont Screenshots.




So now you have the information, I look forward to getting your screen shots.


Bill Von Sennet  C.E.O.