How to Use Snipping Tool Text Actions in Windows 11

The ability to capture bite-sized or specific information from your screen and share it across has never been easier, thanks to Snipping Tool. And with the introduction of Snipping Tool Text Actions, this app got a much-needed facelift. Keep reading to know more.

How to Use Snipping Tool Text Actions in Windows 11

As the name suggests, the Snipping Tool Text Actions feature helps you do more with the text within the screenshot. But what is this feature? And what to do if Text Actions is unavailable on your Windows 11 device? Let’s find out.

What Is Text Actions in Snipping Tool

An OCR-based (Optical Character Recognition) feature, Text Actions in Snipping Tool helps you copy or redact text from any selected screenshot or image.

This will allow you to hide sensitive information by redacting the text or copying huge chunks of text using the copy text feature without any third-party app. Once done, this image can be saved and used as per requirement.

How to Get Text Actions

To access the Text Actions feature, your Snipping Tool app must run version 11.2308.33.0 and higher. So, open the Microsoft Store and check if it needs an update. Here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Go to Search and type Microsoft Store. Then, open the app from the search results.

Open Microsoft Store

Step 2: In the search bar, type Snipping Tool and open the app.

Open app from search results

Step 3: Here, click on Update if available.

Click on Update

Wait for the Snipping Tool app to finish updating. Then, reopen the app and see if you can access the Text Actions feature in Snipping Tool.

How to Use the Text Actions Feature in Snipping Tool

Now, let us look at how you can use it to copy text or hide sensitive information in the screenshot using the Copy Text and Quick Redact functions. Ensure you have taken the screenshot and have the Snipping Tool window open before proceeding. Here’s a step-by-step look.

I. To Copy Text

Step 1: Click on the Text Actions button in the toolbar.

Open Text Actions menu

Step 2: Once the image is analyzed, select the text you want to copy from the image.

Step 3: Then, right-click on the text and click on Copy text.

This will help you copy the selected text. You can now paste this text outside of the Snipping Tool app.

Select text to copy

Step 4: Or, if you want to copy all the text visible on the screen, click on ‘Copy all text’ from the menu options.

Copy all text

This will copy all the text picked up by the Snipping Tool app. You can paste this text wherever you want. If you still wish to save this image, you must do it manually, as the Snipping Tool app does not automatically save screenshots.

II. To Redact Text

Note: For now, you can only redact text containing a phone number or email address. For this, the Snipping Tool app will automatically detect the relevant text within the image.

Step 1: Once the relevant image is open in Snipping Tool, click on the Text Actions icon from the menu bar.

Open Text Actions menu

Step 2: Here, click on the down arrow icon next to the Quick redact option.

Step 3: Now, select the information you wish to redact within the image.

Note: Snipping Tool will only redact the text based on these two options. Manually selecting text will not affect this.

Select redaction criteria

Step 4: Once the selection is made, click on Quick redact.

Click on Quick redact

This will immediately redact the selected information within the image. Since this feature is relatively new, there might be instances when incomplete information is redacted. In this case, you can hide the leftover text using the Ballpoint pen option.

If you have mistakenly redacted a phone number or email address, you can remove the redaction as well. Although, doing this will remove all the redactions within the document. Follow the below steps if you would like to give it a try.

Step 5: Go to Quick redact and click on the arrow icon.

Step 6: Here, click on ‘Remove all redactions’.

Remove redactions

This will remove all the redactions within the image. Now, choose the information you want hidden and use the redact option to hide it from the image. Once done, don’t forget to save or share the image before closing the window.

What to Do if Text Actions Is Not Working In Snipping Tool

Because the Text Actions feature in Snipping Tool is new, you might have trouble getting it to work the first time. However, this issue might be fixable through a few troubleshooting steps. Keep reading to know more.

1. Check if the App Is up to Date

As mentioned above, you must run Snipping Tool version 11.2308.33.0 or later to access this feature. This means your app must be up to date. If you’re unsure, follow the abovementioned steps and check if an update is pending. If so, finish installing the update before checking again.

2. Restart Snipping Tool

If your app is newly updated or hasn’t been closed for a while, we recommend restarting the Snipping Tool app. This will cause all app features to close and load again, fixing any temporary issues caused by the recent update or other system bugs. Here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Go to the taskbar and right-click on any empty space.

Step 2: Click on Task Manager.

Open Task Manager

Step 3: From the list of apps, click on Snipping Tool.

Step 4: Then click on End task.

Click on End Task

Now, again open the Snipping Tool app and see if the Text Actions feature is available.

3. Restart Windows 11

Similar to restarting the Snipping Tool application, you can also restart your entire Windows 11 PC to restart all system functions and features. Do this if you’ve already updated Snipping Tool to the abovementioned version but Text Actions is still unavailable. Here’s how.

Step 1: Go to the taskbar and click on Start.

Click on Start

Step 2: Here, click on the Power button.

Step 3: Click on Restart.

Restart Windows 11

Once your PC finishes restarting, open the Snipping Tool app again and see if you can access the Text Actions feature.

4. Wait for the Feature to Become Available

If you’ve tried all the above ways or can’t find an update for the Snipping Tool version 11.2308.33.0, you should wait it out.

Because this feature is still rolling out, it might not be currently available in your location. So, keep an eye out for any updates Microsoft might release soon. Then, check the release notes for version details before trying again.

Do More With Snipping Tool

While Snipping Tool Text Actions is less comprehensive than we’d like, it is a start. Here’s hoping Microsoft refines this feature to introduce more functionalities or improve the existing ones, like having more options when redacting text in the captured screenshots.

Last updated on 08 November, 2023

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