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I like to annotate a series of existing pictures like that one shown below. Each shows GUI elements and I want to add some circles, arrows and numbers to create a step by step guide.

Is there any software that eases the job by providing a toolset like pre-defined circles, arrows etc? Right now I draw the circles myself ...

Step by step guide example

Update: I don't want to create videos.

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Related question: superuser.com/questions/98701/… –  Gnoupi Mar 25 '10 at 14:04
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a programm i just found: bluemangolearning.com/screensteps –  Chris Apr 22 '10 at 11:39
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7 Answers

up vote 11 down vote accepted

I would use a tool like Snag-It to do the screen capture, then it has add-in stamps you can use, including ones that already have a circle with a number on it. Very easy to use.

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+1 For Snag-It thats what I would have suggested and the program I used when I was doing screenshots for users new to Office 2007 –  Joe Taylor Mar 25 '10 at 13:19
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The Windows 7 Problem Steps Recorder automatically takes screenshots at each important step, and saves the resulting images and annotations to a zipped MHT file.

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I thought of that as well and it's a really great tool. However, it's probably more geared towards reproducing problems while recording really anything you do and documenting it with a screenshot. For guides or How-Tos that's maybe a bit too much and too technical. Still, I like that tool :-) –  Joey Mar 25 '10 at 19:54
    
i figure it can easily work in a pinch. And it's free! –  Ian Boyd Apr 3 '10 at 23:56
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10-4 looks like Greenshot will do what you want. Never used it myself, but the description matches. Found via osalt.com

http://greenshot.sourceforge.net/

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IrfanView has all you need for this - a capture function and a plugin for drawing simple shapes like circles and numbers. And it is free for personal use.

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We actually develop a product, ScreenSteps, that is specifically designed to create step-by-step guides. It lets you capture screen shots and automatically assembles them into documents where you can add text, annotations, etc. It also has a sequence tool that lets you just click to add numbered circles that automatically increment in number. Makes it really easy to reference GUI elements.

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Snagit is a great tool (so I gave the above answer a +1), especially for collecting a series of screenshots which you can then go back and edit (you don't have to edit each one and save it, they are just stored by the Snagit editor until you are ready, you can set the default so it does not switch to the editor every time you take a screenshot so you don't interrupt your flow.

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I use Screendocs on the Mac.

It creates a HTML webpage with my step by step screenshots.

As an added bonus, it saves to my Dropbox public folder and gives me the public URL I can share with my colleagues and friends instantly.

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