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How to preview a printout and print selected pages

Computers were supposed to let us save lots of paper but they’ve actually made it easier to use much more. Sometimes you just want to read or save a web page on paper. But you don’t need to let a poorly designed web page waste a bunch of paper.

Unfortunately some web pages look terrible when you print them. A graphic header and navigation buttons might look nice on the screen but, if not designed for printing, they often get strewn across pages of paper. And while you might like skimming through other readers’ comments on a popular article, if you print them out you might need to refill your paper tray.

If you want to print just part of a web page, then you’re going to need to figure out which pages that part is going to show up on and how to tell your Mac that you only want to print those pages.

In this video I show you how to:

  • Discover the print preview feature in Safari;
  • Open a printout as a PDF in Preview;
  • Print only selected pages.
Video too small? Watch full screen by clicking the YouTube Full Screen button button here

If you use another web browser like Firefox or Google Chrome, never fear. Although they don’t have the little preview displayed in their print windows, both still let you open the printout as a PDF in Preview.

And, regardless of which web browser you use, you can also preview printouts using the “Preview” button that’s even visible in the print windows minimized state (with the little triangle button pointing down).

So the next time you print a web page, use these techniques to save time and money on wasted paper and toner.

{ 11 comments… add one }
  • Kathie Funk May 18, 2011, 6:46 pm

    Thank You So Very Much. I feel like I went to class to learn something and it was so so so Easy. Love Love this website.

    • Steve May 18, 2011, 7:38 pm

      Well thank you Kathie! I have fun making these videos but comments like yours do give me an extra big smile.

  • jac mills May 19, 2011, 11:24 am

    Steve: Once again, you da man. Your Mum must be proud of her son Stevie.

    • Steve May 19, 2011, 11:28 am

      Thanks Jac. Yes, she seems to be. I’ll have to have her star in another video soon. 🙂

  • jacin May 21, 2011, 8:29 am

    Thanks very much for this useful tip. I´m an Spanish mum and at the same time that I´m practising English,I´m learning how to move on the Net. Steve, you´re making it easy for me, thanks.
    By the way, do you know that Loyola is a monastery in Navarra,Spain?
    It was here where Saint Ignacio de Loyola was born.

    • Steve May 21, 2011, 11:16 am

      Hola, Jacin. I’m happy that you found this tip useful.

      Your English looks fine to me. Definitely a lot better than my Spanish! My family says that we are descendants of Saint Ignacio (we call him Saint Ignatius) but who knows for sure. I should come to Spain someday to see where he was born and practice my Spanish.

  • barb May 21, 2011, 2:29 pm

    You are nothing short of a genius to be able to explain things so well. Instructing us on things that we would never have known about.
    Thanks again! Barb

    • Steve May 21, 2011, 3:04 pm

      Hi Barb, stop trying to make me blush (it’s working). Glad this video helped you. It does seem crazy sometimes how lots of options can be hidden under a button with only a triangle on it! Would it have killed them to put “More Options” on the button instead???

  • Bob October 10, 2011, 11:28 am

    Thank you for this. I stopped by the Apple store but they had classes going on and the guy at the door didn’t have an answer for me.

    • Steve October 10, 2011, 4:30 pm

      Great! Glad it helped.

  • dion April 8, 2013, 2:53 pm

    Thank you so much for this video! Can’t believe it was this simple,now I can start saving some paper 🙂

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