maim, slop: select & grab screenshots

While scrot is an excellent utility to take screenshots, it has some drawbacks wrt. the amount of control you have on the screenshots and image adjustments. For example, here’s a scrot screenshot with garbage lines. maim and slop are a combination of two cmdline utilities which try to fix the shortcomings of scrot.

slop (Select Operation) querys for a selection from the user and prints the region to stdout. It grabs the mouse and turns it into a crosshair, lets the user click and drag to make a selection (or click on a window) while drawing a pretty box around it. Hovering on a window selects it and a left click returns the dimensions. You can also click and drag to select a region on the screen.

maim (Make Image) on the other hand, can take screenshots using region co-ordinates passed to it as arguments or through slop (for user selection). Features include:

  • Select or specify any geometry
  • Intelligently handle multiple monitors out out of screen areas. Mask off-screen pixels to be black and transparent in screenshots.
  • Save to any format
  • Blend the system cursor to screenshots
  • maim’s --select option is more advanced to scrot’s -s
  • No feature bloat e.g., no --exec or naming features
  • Automatically upload to Imgur (needs external script)

The only way to install slop and maim is to compile them from source. I have uploaded the compiled stripped binaries for Ubuntu 14.04 x86_64. Copy the binaries in /usr/bin and make them executable.

Download (md5sum: 6db73169d8ed7ee280439bcd58623695).

The simplest way to run is:

//Capture full screen
$ maim screeshot.jpg
//Select region/window and capture
$ maim --hidecursor -s screenshot.jpg

You can move the mouse around to see how the focussed window changes with hover. To take the screenshot of a whole window (without any overlap), hover and double click on the window. The extension give in the output image name determines the format. Default (no option) is PNG. To push things further, assign a keyboard shortcut.

Webpage: maim, slop

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