Archive for January, 2013

Taking a screenshot of current Activity in Android

January 6, 2013 22 comments

In this post I’ll show how you can take a screenshot of your current Activity and save the resulting image on /sdcard.

The idea behind taking a screenshot actually is pretty simple: what we need to do is to get a reference of the root view andĀ  generate a bitmap copy of this view.


Considering that we want to take the screenshot when a button is clicked, the code will look like this:

findViewById( OnClickListener() {
   public void onClick(View v) {
       Bitmap bitmap = takeScreenshot();


First of all we should retrieve the topmost view in the current view hierarchy, then enable the drawing cache, and after that call getDrawingCache().

Calling getDrawingCache(); will return the bitmap representing the view or null if cache is disabled, that’s why setDrawingCacheEnabled(true); should be set to true prior invokingĀ  getDrawingCache().

public Bitmap takeScreenshot() {
   View rootView = findViewById(;
   return rootView.getDrawingCache();


And the method that saves the bitmap image to external storage:

 public void saveBitmap(Bitmap bitmap) {
    File imagePath = new File(Environment.getExternalStorageDirectory() + "/screenshot.png");
    FileOutputStream fos;
    try {
        fos = new FileOutputStream(imagePath);
        bitmap.compress(CompressFormat.JPEG, 100, fos);
    } catch (FileNotFoundException e) {
        Log.e("GREC", e.getMessage(), e);
    } catch (IOException e) {
        Log.e("GREC", e.getMessage(), e);


Since the image is saved on external storage, the WRITE_EXTERNAL_STORAGE permission should be added AndroidManifest to file:

<uses-permission android:name="android.permission.WRITE_EXTERNAL_STORAGE" />

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