How to stop screen recording on Mac

There are lots of reasons why you might want to make a screen recording on your Mac. Maybe you want to show a colleague or friend how to complete a task. Or maybe you’re making a video for social media and need to record something in an app. Whatever the reason, the easiest way to do it is to use one of the Mac’s built-in tools for screen recording. There are actually two of them: QuickTime Player and the Screenshot utility. Both can either record the whole screen or just a section you choose. But what if you need to stop a screen recording? What do you do then? We’ll show you how to end screen record on Mac.

How to record your Mac’s screen

Before we get to how to end a screen recording on Mac, let’s briefly look at how to start one. You can, of course, use a third-party application. If you want to use a built-in tool, there are two options: QuickTime Player and Screenshot app. Here’s how to use them.

QuickTime Player

  1. Go to your Applications folder and open QuickTime Player.
  2. Click the File menu and choose New Screen Recording, or use the keyboard shortcut Control-Command-N.

  3. In the palette that opens, click Options to choose where to save the recording and any other options.
  4. Click either the record an area button or the record screen button.
  5. If you choose to record an area of the screen, draw the corners of the rectangle so it is over the area with your finger held down on the mouse or trackpad button.

Screenshot app

  1. Open the Screenshot app or click Command-Shift-5 from any app.
  2. Choose from the Options menu.
  3. Select the record whole screen or record an area of the screen and click the button.
  4. If you choose to record an area of the screen, draw the corners of the rectangle so it is over the area with the mouse or trackpad button held down.
Tip: How to quickly free up space on your Mac

If you make lots of screen recordings on your Mac and don’t delete them regularly, you will quickly fill up your startup disk. And if all those recordings are in different places on your Mac, it can be hard to track them down and move them to a different disk or delete them. The same is true of other large files or files you haven’t opened in a long time. The solution is a tool that is designed to scan your Mac for the largest files and those you haven’t opened in a long time, like the Large & Old Files module in CleanMyMac X. The Large & Old Files module scans your Mac and displays the files that are taking up space on your Mac and those that haven’t been opened for the longest time. You can then choose to remove them with a click or move them to another disk. It’s a great way of quickly freeing up tens of gigabytes of space on your startup disk. You can download CleanMyMac X for free here and try it for yourself.

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How to stop Screenshot or QuickTime screen recording on your Mac

To stop recording, just click on the stop button in the menu bar. If you’re recording in QuickTime Player, the recording will open in that app. If you’re recording in Screenshot, you will see a thumbnail preview of the recording on your Mac’s screen. If you click on the preview, you can trim the clip, delete it, or share it.

To trim a recording in QuickTime Player, click the Edit menu and choose Trim.

If clicking stop doesn’t work, the next best option is Force Quit. Press Control-Command Escape and choose QuickTime Player or Screenshot in the Force Quit window, then click Force Quit.

The final method, if Force Quit doesn’t work, is to use Activity Monitor. Activity Monitor lists all the processes running on your Mac. And it allows you to select individual processes and quit them. Go to Applications > Utilities and open Activity Monitor. Then, search for QuickTime, select the processes that have QuickTime in their name, and click the ‘x’ in the toolbar.

Recording your Mac’s screen is a great way to share tips or workflows with friends and colleagues. There are a couple of ways you can do it using the Mac’s built-in tools: QuickTime Player and Screenshot. Follow the steps above to start and stop screen recording on your Mac.

Laptop with CleanMyMac
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