Getting text in to Excel (from a screen dump) using OCR in OneNote

The problem I am going to show you how to solve is to take data from a screen that doesn’t  have a “PRINT” or “EXPORT” function. You get data in to Excel from a screen dump via OneNote.

There could be several reasons why you can’t print so it might be worthwhile to get your IT department to look at the software – is there a training issue or should it be put to the supplier as a development of the product?

This is a generic workaround. Any Windows based computer that has Microsoft Office on will have OneNote. It is free to use.

I will use information taken from a website to demonstrate. This data is taken from a publically available source located at

The process should work from any website, web based document or piece of Windows software UNLESS print screen is disabled.

Step 1 Click on Print Screen – this copies a picture of the screen in to the clipboard

Step 2 Paste this image in to OneNote

Step 3 Right Click on the picture and Copy Text from Picture. OneNote will use OCR to convert this in to text (see picture below)

Step 4 Paste this text in to Excel which will be ready for editing.

Please view the accompanying video at





Author: Justin Holt

I witnessed a revolution in the 1980s when personal computers started to appear on desks and at home. Compared to today, the technology was clunky and definitely not mobile. However, one thing hasn't changed, and that a lot of people still need to ask "How do I..." I often think back to all the help I got, and how I asked what I worried were dumb questions. Over the years, I've come to realise that the only dumb question is one that isn't asked. I hope I can take my turn in answering the questions you have. All the very best, Justin