FIX: Snipping tool grey screen in Windows 10/11

by Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
Tashreef Shareef is a software developer turned tech writer. He discovered his interest in technology after reading a tech magazine accidentally. Now he writes about everything tech from... read more
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  • Many Windows 10 users reported that a grey screen occurs while using the Snipping tool.
  • Use a reliable tool that will automatically update drivers whenever necessary.
  • You should do a proper diagnosis in Safe boot mode to find the conflicting software.
  • Scan your system for any problems with a particular command and fix them.
How to fix the Snipping tool grey screen in Windows 10

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Sometimes while opening the Snipping tool in Windows 10 you may get the grey screen.

This issue seems to have affected many Windows 10 users after the recent Windows update as reported in the Microsoft Community Forums.

This is the second time this has happened to me…first time it just “fixed itself”…while I was in contact w/microsoft (agent said he hadn’t “done anything”)….
I Click on snipping tool, choose New, choose shape…screen goes grey, so I cannot snip what I want to copy…

Follow the steps in this article to fix the Snipping tool grey screen Windows 10 problem in no time.

How can I fix the grey screen of Snipping Tool in Windows 10?

1. Update the display driver

  1. Press Windows Key + R to open Run.
  2. Type devmgmt.msc, and click OK to open the Device Manager.
  3. In the Device Manager, expand the Display adapters section.
  4. Right-click on the Display Adapter installed on your PC (Intel or AMD) and select Update Driver.
    snipping tool grey screen windows 10
  5. In the next screen, select Search automatically for the updated driver software.
  6. Wait for the Windows to look for new driver update. If found, download and install the updates.

Restart the computer after the driver is updated. Launch the snipping tool, and check if the grey screen error still exists.

Sometimes Windows has difficulty installing the latest drivers available on the market, and downloading and updating them manually also can be quite an arduous task.

That’s why we recommend using a tool that will update drivers for you automatically every time a new version is released.

Some of the most common Windows errors and bugs are a result of old or incompatible drivers. The lack of an up-to-date system can lead to lag, system errors or even BSoDs.To avoid these types of problems, you can use an automatic tool that will find, download, and install the right driver version on your Windows PC in just a couple of clicks, and we strongly recommend DriverFix. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Download and install DriverFix.
  2. Launch the application.
  3. Wait for DriverFix to detect all your faulty drivers.
  4. The software will now show you all the drivers that have issues, and you just need to select the ones you’d liked fixed.
  5. Wait for DriverFix to download and install the newest drivers.
  6. Restart your PC for the changes to take effect.


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Disclaimer: this program needs to be upgraded from the free version in order to perform some specific actions.

2. Perform System File Check

  1. Type cmd in the search bar.
  2. Right-click on the Command Prompt option, and select Run as administrator.
    snipping tool grey screen windows 10
  3. In the Command Prompt, type the following command and press Enter: Sfc /scannow 
  4. The System File Checker tool will scan the system for any issue with the system files and repair them.
  5. Reboot the system and check for any improvements.

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If after updating the drivers the issue persists, use the System File Checker utility to scan the system for file corruption and replacement.

3. Diagnose in Safe boot mode

  1. Press Windows key + R to open Run.
  2. Type msconfig, and click OK to open the MS Configuration.
  3. Open the Boot tab.
  4. Under Boot Options, check the Safe Boot box.
  5. Click Apply and OK to save the changes.
    snipping tool grey screen windows 10
  6. Restart the system when prompted by Windows.

Open Snipping Tool, and if the app opens without the grey screen, it means one of the third-party software, hardware or the driver is causing the issue with the app.

In this case, start by removing any newly installed external hardware and uninstall newly installed software. Check again until you find the conflicting software.

4. Other solutions to try

  1. Press Ctrl + Alt + Delete, to open the Task Manager.
  2. Close all the programs that are running on your system.

If the issue persists, try the following troubleshooting tips to fix the issue. You should reboot the system, and check if the Snipping tool is now accessible.

Also, if you are looking for an alternative to the built-in snipping tool, check out our comprehensive guide with the best snipping tools for Windows 10.

We hope that our solutions helped you fix the Snipping tool grey screen issue in Windows 10. For more suggestions or questions, please access the comments section below.

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