How to extract text from an image in Windows 11

In this guide we show you how to extract text from an image in Windows 11 with Text Extractor, a PowerToys module.

OCR  recognition  is perfect for extracting text from an image in Windows 11 . Although it is true that there are various third-party applications that enable this functionality in the system, there is nothing better than using an official tool provided by Microsoft. We refer to Text Extractor , a component that is included in the PowerToys package.

In this article we explain all the steps you need to take to integrate an  OCR scanner on your Windows 11 PC . First, we talk about the installation of the PowerToys. Then we show you how to activate  Text Extractor on your PC and finally we show you how to use this utility easily. With this you can extract text from an image in Windows 11 . Let’s start!

Index of contents

  • How to extract text from an image step by step in Windows 11
    • Install the PowerToys
    • Activate and configure OCR recognition
    • Steps to extract text from an image

How to extract text from an image step by step in Windows 11

To make reading this guide easier and to make it easier for you to put it into practice, we have divided the entire process into three sections:

  1. Install the PowerToys.
  2. Activate and configure OCR recognition.
  3. Indications to extract the text of an image.

Install the PowerToys

We start  by installing the PowerToys . In case you didn’t know, this is a software package that includes a series of tools that improve the user experience in Windows 11. Most of them are designed for advanced users, although we believe that everyone can take advantage of their tools. functions.

Among the utilities that  PowerToys include  , we find  Text Extractor , an OCR reader that integrates with the system and that allows you to  extract text from an image in Windows 11  (and also in Windows 10). The requirements that your PC must meet are the following:

  • Supported operating systems: Windows 11 (all versions) and Windows 10 v2004 (19041) or later.
  • System architecture: Currently, x64 and Arm64 architectures are supported.
  • .NET 6.0.8 desktop runtime or a newer 6.0.x runtime.
  • Microsoft Edge WebView2 runtime bootstrapper (the latest version available will always be installed).
  • Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable installer (one of the most recent versions available will be installed).

And how do you download them to your PC? It’s that simple:

  1. Visit the  official PowerToys page on GitHubwith your favorite browser. Specifically,  go to the releases section .
  2. Download the appropriate executable according to your processor. Generally, this will be the one that includes the term  x64for  x86 64-bit processors . However, there is also an  ARM64 version  for devices like the  Surface X.
  3. When the download is complete, launch the installer and follow the steps in the wizard.
  4. The  PowerToys will have been installed on your computer and a welcome window will appear on the screen.

If you visit the system tray, you will see that it is included to access the  configuration of the PowerToys . By default, they are launched with the system, so you should always find the corresponding icon there, unless you close the toolkit. In any case, double click on it to access the preferences.

Activate and configure OCR recognition

When you are in the  PowerToys settings window , click on  Text Extractor . It is located at the end of the list of tools, on the left side of the window.

So, follow these steps:

  1. Tap on the slider until it appears as  On.
  2. Edit the keyboard shortcut if you see fit. By default, you will be able to access the  Windows + Shift + Ttext extractor .

Surely you quickly realize that there are no more parameters to modify in this section. Having taken these two steps, you will already have Text Extractor enabled  , the OCR reader included in the  PowerToys .

Steps to extract text from an image

Just like when configuring it, using  Text Extractor is very easy . Simply press the key combination you have chosen for a selector to appear on the screen. Moves the cursor around the screen to select the text. This will automatically be copied to the clipboard.

After the tests we have carried out, we must tell you that the text recognition works really well. The fact that the content  is copied directly to the clipboard is convenient , since it reduces the number of capture steps. Just point and, voila, the content is available to be pasted into a text field.

As you can imagine, it is not a perfect system . It may fail depending on the quality of the fragment or the resolution of the image. However, we believe that this built-in tool will come in handy in the following circumstances:

  • Extract text from an image. It is the most common task in this type of utilities. Being able to extract any text from a photo, especially if it is a long snippet, is very useful.
  • Copy system items that cannot be selected. In addition to images, Text Extractor copies text from any region of the screen. As is obvious, in selectable texts, such as those on a website, it does not make much sense to take advantage of this tool. But what about those snippets that appear as unselectable in apps? Undoubtedly, being able to extract any text that appears on the screen is a very interesting plus.


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