XnShell is an Explorer add-on that lets you resize, convert, rotate images from the context menu

You may have heard about or even used the excellent XnView Image Viewer (check out some of our other favorites such as Faststone Image Viewer, QuickViewer, or HoneyView) . But did you know that the developer also makey an image tool that you can access from Explorer’s context menu?

XnShell is an Explorer add-on that lets you resize, convert, rotate images from the context menu
XnShell is the Shell extension we’ll be looking at here. And no, you don’t need XnView for this tool to work.

Download and install XnShell and open Windows Explorer. Select an image and right-click on it, and you’ll see the XnShell context-menu item. This won’t appear when the selected file is not an image.

The first thing that you will notice in this menu is that it displays a thumbnail preview of the picture. That’s unusual and may be helpful, unless you use tiles or other view modes where the picture is already visible. It also displays the resolution, the bpp (bits per pixel) and the size of the image.

Edit images from the context menu

The application lets you edit the image with a couple of clicks and you don’t need any image editors to process the changes. The first option is to convert the image, and you can save it in GIF, BMP, JPG, PCX, PNG, TIF and TGA formats. How does this work? Select an image, right-click > XnShell > Convert into, and pick a format. That’s it.

XnShell context menu -convert

The other “Convert..” option isn’t instant like the one above, but lets you select the output folder, format, and also resize the image. There are a lot more output formats available when you use this option including CIN, DCX, DDS, DIS, DPX, GBR, ICO, IFF, IMG, JIX, JXR, KRO, MBM, MIF, MTV, PAT, PBM, PDB, PDF, PGM, PIC, PIX, PNM, PPM, PRC, PS, PSD, QRT, RAW, RGB, RLA, SCT, TGA, VST, WBMP, WRL, XBM, XPM, YUV.

You can define the compression settings manually from the “Convert…” menu.

Resize and Rotate images

The Resize menu has options to modify the picture’s size to one of the following 320 x 200 pixels, 640 x 480, 800 x 600, 1024 (x pixels based on the aspect ratio). You can use the 50% and 25% resize options to reduce the original image. The result is instant, and the new image is saved in the same folder with a new name. Similarly, the Rotate option offers ways to change the photo’s orientation instantly by 90°, 180°, Flip Vertical or Horizontal, or Rotate based on the EXIF tag.

Other options

XnShell can edit the ITPC metadata of pictures. There is an option to retain the original attributes and another to use templates to quickly add information to your images. You can upload images to the cloud directly by using the Send to ImageShack menu item. And the final menu option is to set the selected image as wallpaper.

XnShell options

The Options sub-menu allows you to modify XnShell’s settings. You can use this to disable/enable any of the menu items. The default thumbnail preview size is 128 x 96 which is small, but you can increase the size manually. Or you can disable the previews. There are a few other options for tweaking the thumbnail settings.

XnShell’s convert options is incredible if you edit images on a daily basis, and share them online.

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CudaText is an advanced text editor with tabs, syntax highlighting, plugins, image viewer and more

Text editors, we have reviewed plenty of these here in the past including Geany, Zim, and Notepads; many are user-friendly and basic, but sometimes we review some feature-rich ones. CudaText belongs to the latter category.

CudaText is an advanced text editor with tabs, syntax highlighting, plugins, image viewer and more

It is an open source, advanced text editor with a tabbed interface. The official page says that it supports syntax highlighting for 180 languages. Let’s look at it from a regular user’s point of view.

Tabs

The program has a Tabbed interface which is quite Chrome-like in appearance. This helps in navigating through the tabs easily. Right-click on a tab to view some extra options. You can use these to change the color of a tab, add it to a group and manage it. This allows you to have multi-panes open at the same time, or even make it a floating tab.

Cudatext multi-pane

There is a side-bar and a side-panel to the left edge of the screen. You can use these to switch among the Code Tree, Project Management, Snippet Panel and Tabs. I’m not a programmer, but I found the Tabs tree useful to navigate through the list of documents opened in the application.

Note: The side-bar contains the switches, and the change is reflected in the side-panel. You can toggle most elements in the interface from the view menu, including the side-panel and side-bar for a cleaner approach.

Editing options

The primary feature in CudaText is support for Syntax highlighting which is useful when you are writing or looking at code. This includes URL highlighting as well. You can use the Edit menu to copy a line, the full path or the file name of a specific tab. The case conversion tool can help you quickly switch the cases: Uppercase, Lowercase, Line, Sentence, and Title.

cudatext document

There is the usual find and replace tool, but you can also use the program to setup bookmarks and quickly jump to them.

View modes

You can view images directly in CudaText, and they open in a new tab. That can be useful in saving you a few seconds when you want to preview an image, say while you’re hyperlinking to a picture.The view menu allows you to toggle the Word wrap, Ruler, Line Numbers, Code Folding, folding panels, and more. There is a full-screen editing mode and a distraction-free mode, the only difference between the two is that the latter disables all other elements (toolbar, status bar, side bar, etc)

There are some built-in Themes that you can choose from to change the color of the interface, and also the color of the syntax.

Plugins

CudaText supports plugins and you can use this to add features that you find useful (Spell check, auto save, complete from text, etc).  If you click on the Plugins > Addons Manager > view download links, the program appears to freeze. But give it a few minutes and you will see a new document open with about 506 lines. If you access the plugins section from SourceForge, you will see that the actual number is 91. The document apparently loads snippets, packages, themes, etc. all of which are optional additional components that are similar to plugins.

CudaText plugins snippets

Installing a plugin is very easy. Run CudaText and select the plugin’s archive from the File menu, and it should show a pop-up asking if you want to install it. For e.g. I wanted Auto Save, so I downloaded the plugin.Auto_Save.zip and opened it via CudaText (File > Open), and this is what it looked like.

Cudatext plugin install

Clicking install completes the process, you’ll have to restart the application though. There are many plugins available on Github too.  For e.g. Find in Files.

The program has a lot of options that can be customized by manually entering the values. You can access this from the Plugins > Options Editor menu.

CudaText is a portable application, written in Python. It’s not quite like Notepad++ as its missing macros, and I also found it to be a bit memory intensive. If you can get past that comparison, you’ll find that it has options that not only programmers will love, but also that regular users can use it for day to day word processing tasks.

CudaText

For Windows

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Wave Editor is a free and user-friendly audio editing program for Windows

Editing audio files quickly can be a challenge for many users. If you’re looking for a user-friendly option for some basic functions, like trimming an audio track or increasing the volume, Wave Editor may be what you need especially if you find Audacity too complex.

Wave Editor is a free and user-friendly audio editing program for Windows

The interface of the program looks a bit dated but is easy to adapt to. Use the file menu to load a track, and you’ll see two waveforms on the screen visualizing the flow of the audio. This is the timeline with the time displayed at the top, and the decibels on the side (in an X-axis and Y-axis pattern). The Zoom tools on the toolbar can be handy to zoom out or in to view the graph better for precision editing.

The Status bar on the bottom displays the audio bit rate, channel, cursor position (time), amplitude (in decibels) and the selected audio’s duration. The colors of the background, scales and wave data can be customized from the settings.

Selecting an audio range

Selecting a portion of the audio in Wave Editor is as simple as clicking on the timeline and dragging the cursor to the point you want to. The cursor position serves as the time-stamp, and it is displayed at the bottom of the screen. Or, you can place the cursor at the “begin and end points” of your choice, and use the selection panel in the bottom left corner to pick the points (in seconds, milliseconds).

Hit the play button and the selected portion will be played. The levels bar on the bottom displays the volume level as the track is played. You can adjust the volume of the playback using the slider available at the far end of the cursor/levels.

Editing

After selecting the section of the audio that is to be edited, right-click in the Wave Editor interface to cut, copy, paste or delete the selection. You can optionally add some effects to the audio from the Operations menu or the toolbar. Available options include Fade In, Fade Out, Insert Silence, Normalization, Reverse and Invert. These options are available on the toolbar for quick access.

Wave Editor options

You can amplify the volume of the track, or decrease the volume level if required. Hit the Save or Save as button to save the output file. The program only supports saving the audio in two formats, MP3 and WAV. So, this pretty much limits it to basic editing, which it handles just fine. Input formats that are supported in Wave Editor include MP3, WAV, WMA.

Wave Editor has a text ad which is a link for their shareware product, Wave Cut. You can ignore that. The Tools menu is slightly more annoying, as every tool listed here are optional standalone premium products from the company, except for ID3 Tag Editor which is freeware (but you’ll still need to download it separately).

If you’re looking for a user-friendly video editor, might I recommend SimpleVideoCutter.

I used Wave Editor for editing short music tracks to make cool ringtones and notification sounds. But it can be good if you want to edit out gaps, create some looping tracks, and more.

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Aero Glass is a free tool that enables the frosted glass effect in Windows 8 and 10

Aero Glass is a free program that, well you guessed it, restores the popular”Aero Glass-effect” in Windows 8 and Windows 10. The program uses Windows’ built-in Desktop Window Manager to produce the effect.

Aero Glass is a free tool that enables the frosted glass effect in Windows 8, 8.1 and 10

So, let’s see how it works. There are two options that are available during the installation:  Windows 10 Acrylic Design and Windows 8 RP Aero Glass Design. You can also enable the “Protect Aero Glass by adjusting access permissions” option.

Once you have installed the program, you will see that application title bars will become semi-transparent with the frosted glass effect. In case they don’t, open the Task Manager, right-click on Explorer and select restart. You may want to restart some programs if they don’t have the Aero Glass effect. Here’s what the window looks like normally.

Before Aero Glass - Normal window

And here’s the one with the effect enabled.

after Aero Glass - frosted window

Note: The program displayed a pop-up message which says that this is the free version of Aero Glass, and also shows a machine code. I didn’t find any use for this, but I’m guessing it may be required as part of the activation process for the donation license. The program seems to place a watermark on the wallpaper. Apparently, that’s what the donation removes.

Getting it to work

You may get an error which says “Aero Glass for Win8.1+ Incompatibility issue – Aero Glass does not know how to hook your version of DWM (0x2010)”.  This isn’t an actual error, if you’d read the last screen of the installation wizard, you’ll know why this issue occurred. The program requires some extra files (DWM symbols) which aren’t downloaded by default (unless you have a donation key).

Aero Glass error

As a workaround, you’ll need to get the symbols yourself. You can do so from Microsoft‘s website. The files you’ll need are for the dwmcore.dll and udwm.dll. Or you could do what I did, and use the open source PDB Downloader program. Props to SuperUser forums for the perfect solution.

PDB Downloader

Use the Downloader to navigate to the Windows System32 folder to select the DLLs. Don’t worry, your system files aren’t going to be affected in any way. They are just used for reference to get the PDB files that are required for Aero Glass to work with the DwmEnableBlurBehindWindow function.

PDB Downloader in progress

After you have obtained the 2 files, go to the Aero Glass folder (by default, it’s at C:AeroGlass). Create a folder called Symbols and place the 2 PDB’s inside it. So, they should be at C:AeroGlassSymbols. That’s it. The error should no longer appear, and your windows should appear with a frosted glass effect.

Customization

You can customize the way the aero-effect looks like (blur, color), but for this you’ll need to do edit the Windows Registry. This isn’t recommended for normal users; advanced users on the other hand can refer to the official guide for more information.

As for how Aero Glass works, it works fine in most programs (Explorer, MPV, Notepad, Firefox, Skype, Irfan View, etc, but doesn’t have any effect in other programs like Firefox, Word, Telegram, Steam to name a few. It’s likely because the applications use their own UI elements and not the standard Windows title bar’s.

I remember when I first tried Vista, it was in 2008. Our workstations were being upgraded to the latest operating system, and we were being trained about the improvements it brought over Windows XP. Windows 7 hadn’t been launched yet, those were some crazy days.  One of the features that I immediately liked in it was the Aero Glass effect of the Start Menu. It’s a shame Microsoft removed that from Windows 10. Well, we got that now.

If you’re interested in customizing Windows, I’d recommend trying FalconX to center the taskbar icons.

Aero Glass

For Windows

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SimpleVideoCutter is a free and incredibly easy to use video trimming tool for Windows

Most video editing tools have a lot of options that the average user won’t use. If you’re looking for a way to just cut unwanted sections from videos, the open source application SimpleVideoCutter is an interesting choice.

Just download the latest version from the project’s GitHub website and extract the archive to a directory of your choice.

SimpleVideoCutter is a free and incredibly easy to use video trimming tool for Windows

The program’s GUI consists of a menubar at the top, a side-panel to the left with editing tools, and a video preview pane. The small panel at the bottom of the video pane is the timeline graph that you can use to view frames. A status bar is visible on the bottom of the window that displays the volume level and file selection status.

SimpleVideoCutter requires FFmpeg (also open source) to be installed, for converting video files. I used the Windows 64-bit Static version. Once you have downloaded it, select the path to the FFmpeg.exe in the settings video of the video editor program.

Open a file that you want to edit to start the cutting process. SimpleVideoCutter supports the following video formats: MOV, AVI, MP4, WMV, RM and MPG. The video should begin playing in the video pane, and you can pause it anytime you want to by hitting space or using the mouse. The vertical line on the timeline bar indicates the current position of the playback. Mouse over the timeline to get a preview of the frame to pop-up, you can use this to decide the start and end positions.

SimpleVideoCutter video preview

Select a start position in the video using the “Set Start” option from the side-bar. For e.g. let’s say you want to edit a video you took on a vacation or at a party, and you find that the first 5 seconds of the video are shaky or that something is blocking the view-finder; place the cursor at a frame after 5 seconds (use the timeline).

This is your starting point, similarly pick an end point. You’ll notice the timeline highlights the portion of the video that is selected. You can preview the selected duration using the “Play range” option. Use the clear selection button if you’re not happy with your choice and start over. There are absolutely no output settings to tinker with at all, so the program does live up to its name.

Use the enqueue option and SimpleVideo Cutter will begin the trimming process. You can view the progress in the tasks panel. The process was quite memory intensive, but that also depends on the quality of the video you are working with. The video resolution, frame rate and audio sample rate were preserved accurately. So, it was pretty much a lossless editing/conversion process and it took just a couple of clicks.

SimpleVideoCutter output

Note: If your edited videos end up blurry, it may be because of issues with FFMpeg. I forced the EXE to close, and it resulted in blurry videos. To fix it, I had to re-select FFMpeg’s path in the program.

Closing Words

SimpleVideoCutter is a portable program. It’s user-friendliness is truly the best feature of the application. I think it can be a good solution for editing videos that you shoot on your phone, and since it retains the quality, you can share the videos online too.

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AwesomeWallpaper is an open source program that lets you set videos, your system information or galleries as your desktop background

Bored with your desktop background? AwesomeWallpaper is an open source application which can help you spice it up in a few ways.

The program runs from the system tray and you can configure it by right-clicking on its icon. The Settings screen is the main interface, and is made up of five tabs.

AwesomeWallpaper is an open source program that lets you set video, system information or photo folders as your desktop background

The Wallpaper type can be selected from the General tab. It also houses an option to select the monitor, which lets you set different wallpapers for each monitor. This is explained further down below as well in detail.

Tip: Where are desktop backgrounds (wallpapers) stored in Windows 10?

Image

Use AweSomeWallpaper’s Image tab to select the picture that you want to set as the background. There are four other settings here that are also available in the other wallpaper modes. These allow you to set the Horizontal alignment, vertical alignment, stretch and transparency.

Note: The transparency slider in the program (and the video tab’s volume slider) has an issue with mouse clicks, it jumps from 0 to 100. So, you’ll have to manually slide it to the position you want to.

For individual wallpapers on multi-monitors, you’ll have to set the background of one monitor using Windows 10’s Settings app, and then select a different one using the program’s image tab. Once you have done that, you’ll need to select the monitor (for e.g. 1 or 2) from the General tab, and the wallpaper of the corresponding display will be changed. You’ll have 2 wallpapers this way.

Gallery

AwesomeWallpaper photo folders

This is quite similar to the image tab, except you’ll have to pick a folder which has the images that you want to use. AwesomeWallpaper will automatically change the background from time to time, like a slideshow. You can customize the gallery’s behavior, i.e. the interval between images, the time an image is displayed.

Videos

Why limit yourself to image backgrounds when you can have a video as your wallpaper. The video formats that AwesomeWallpaper supports include MP4, MP3, MPG, MPEG and AVI. This can make for a nice background, and you can use short videos like a rainy day, flowers or blades of grass swaying, or whatever you like. You can configure the video to loop (repeat), auto play and also set the volume level.

AwesomeWallpaper lets you set video as your desktop background

Note: You can right-click the system tray icon to play/pause the video.

System Information

Aside from photos and videos, AwesomeWallpaper can also display system information on the background wallpaper. The keyword here is “on” and not “as”, meaning the details are displayed over your current background. That’s quite nice. It’s a bit customizable and lets you set the alignment, font type, size, color and the transparency.

Sadly, you can’t modify which information is displayed on the screen. Speaking of which, you can display the boot time, the OS Version, display resolution, total/available/used memory, processor, processes, drives with their label, total and available free space, network adapters and more.

AwesomeWallpaper system information

The System Information isn’t updated in real-time, by default it’s set to refresh every minute. But you can choose from a range (hours, minutes, and seconds) that goes from as low as 10 seconds, and up to 1 day.

AwesomeWallpaper is made by the developer who wrote SmartSystemMenu.

I’ve seen a few programs that offer similar features, but those were shareware. So, it’s refreshingly nice to see a free and open source alternative in AwesomeWallpaper. I would have liked to view the system’s thermals and usage loads, but we have other programs like Thilmera7, AgaueEye which can help us with that.

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Pinner is a program that lets you access your favorite files, folders, applications and URLs from one place

Earlier this month, we discussed a freeware shortcut tool called Biniware Run. While it’s more of a speed dial application, there is an alternative for it that is called Pinner that acts as a centralized source for your shortcuts.

Tip: check out other launcher programs for Windows such as QuickJump, the cross-platform Switch, or Jarvis.

Pinner is an open source program that lets you access your favorite files, folders, applications and URLs from one place

Let’s take a look at Pinner. The program’s interface is nothing special, but it provides you with the means to manage and access your pinned items. Think of it like your noticeboard where you have pinned everything that you wish to access, sort of like a centralized dashboard for the pins.

A database is required for the program to store the pins, and Pinner will prompt you to create it when you run it for the first time. You can manually create one by using the File menu or the toolbar icon. There are three groups (tabs) in the pane: All Pins, Favorites and Special Folders. Once you add a new pin elsewhere, a fourth group called “Unsorted” will be created. You can rename or delete this group.

Note: The program picks up a lot of folders from the Users’ directory for the Special Folders. You can disable one or all of these groups from the options.

Adding Pins

Right-click anywhere in the UI and select “Add Pin” from the context menu or use the Insert key. The New Pin window should open; it has three options: File, Folder and Shortcut. They are functionally the same, choosing a specific type adds the relevant icon for the selected item. For e.g. Document icon for a text file, Directory icon for a Folder, or the icon of a program when you select a program.

You can name the pin, select the path of the item, add start arguments and start in information. Double-click a pin and it will open in its default file handler (Text files in Notepad, Folders in Explorer, and so on). Optionally you can set if the file should be opened in a specific program. If you prefer opening pins with the keyboard, you can assign hotkeys for each pin. Don’t forget, Pinner also allows you to add URLs as pins, i.e. shortcuts to open websites in your default browser,

Another way to add pins is to enable Pinner’s “Add to Send To” option from the file menu. This adds the program to the Windows Explorer’s Send To context menu to create new pins comfortably from Explorer.

Managing Pins

If you right-click on a pin, various options appear in the context-menu.  Using these, you can open pins with administrator rights, add them to the favorites bar (at the bottom) or create custom filters.

Find your pin quickly using the search bar at the top of the groups pane and filter the items you see using the button on the toolbar.

Pinner context menu

Pinner has a built-in file explorer that can be accessed by using F10 or from the right-click menu. You can back up the database to save a copy of your Pins manually, or set up an automatic backup from the Options. The interface’s background color can be changed from the View menu, and there’s an option to enable a grid lines which makes it a bit easier to read.

Since the application can be accessed from the Explorer context-menu, it is not available in a portable version. The program requires .NET 4.6 and Microsoft Visual C++ 2015 Update 3 to run.

While it is not as quick to access as Biniware Run, Pinner provides a much better way to organize your shortcuts.

Pinner

For Windows

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7Caps is a free tool with on-screen indicators that tell you if Caps Lock and Num Lock are enabled

Not every keyboard has a built-in Caps Lock or Num Lock LED indicator. My laptop for example, has lights to indicate the status of Caps Lock, Mute and Wi-Fi, but there’s none for Num Lock. I use the number pad a lot to enter two-factor codes, phone numbers, etc., mostly without looking at the keyboard.

7Caps is a free tool with on-screen indicators that tell you if Caps Lock and Num Lock are enabled
Sometimes, we may accidentally hit the buttons and enable/disable Caps Lock or Num Lock. When you do that, you probably have to retype the whole thing which can be quite annoying (unless a program informs you that Caps Lock is active).

This is when programs like Tray Status can be of use to us. But if you’re looking for something without too many bells & whistles, and completely free, 7Caps is a neat alternative. Run the program and you should see a long pill shaped widget on the screen. It has the letters abc to the left, and the number 7 to the right.

Let’s test it, hit the Caps Lock key and the letters on 7Caps’ widget should change to UpperCase ABC to indicate that Caps Lock is enabled.

7Caps on-screen indicator for Caps Lock and Num Lock

If you don’t see the number 7 on the widget, it means that Num lock is not activated. Press the button and the number should appear to the right side of the letters.

7Caps Num Lock is disabled

You can move the 7Caps widget around the screen. It is a sticky widget so it can stay on top of other windows. So, you can keep it on the browser window or your text editor, or even place it on the taskbar where it won’t distract you.

Note: The widget kept disappearing for me if kept on the taskbar. Perhaps it’s a bug?

Settings

There are a few ways to customize the pill’s appearance a bit. Right-click on the widget or on the system tray icon and select settings. This screen allows you to customize the color of the text and the background of the pop-up. You can set a custom color for the text and background for “Caps Lock On” Text, “Caps Lock on” Background, and similarly for the “Lock off” indicators (the Num Lock part’s customizable too).

Don’t like the shape of the widget? Disable the rounded corners to make it a proper rectangle. The opacity of the 7Caps pop-up can be altered, should you find it to be too flashy or distracting. But if you lower the opacity too much, it may become too dim to notice the status change.

Audio Indicators

Right-click on the system tray icon and select “Sounds”. This enables the audio indicator in 7Caps. It plays a sound which says “Caps Lock off”, “Caps Lock on”, and likewise for the Num Lock. You can use the Settings screen to change the sound for each of the 4 indicators. The option can be useful in case you didn’t notice the widget.

It would have been nice if there was an option to resize the pill, or if the tray icon displayed the change in the status of Caps Lock or Num Lock. No portable version is available. But those are minor issues. I tested the program with an external keyboard as well, and it works just fine.

7Caps

For Windows

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RemindMe is an open source offline desktop calendar application for Windows

Desktop calendars are somewhat of a rarity and these days most people either use cloud-based solutions or the calendar app on their mobile phone for reminders.

If you’re like me and prefer a PC application that works offline without syncing your contacts list and other personal data, you may want to take a look at RemindMe.

RemindMe is an open source offline desktop calendar application for Windows

RemindMe  is an open source offline desktop calendar application for Windows. The program starts minimized, and can be accessed by double-clicking on the system tray icon. The interface has a side-panel and a tab-bar on the bottom.

Setting up Reminders

You can get started by using the Reminders side-panel, and then clicking on New Reminder at the bottom. This brings you to the reminder setting screen where you can set a title, select the date and time for the calendar item. Reminders can be set to repeat every day, weekdays, month, or on specific dates too; don’t forget to add a note to the reminder.

To make sure you don’t miss it, you can optionally set a sound to play when the reminder is triggered. RemindMe allows you to choose any MP3 or WAV file, and you can also use Windows’ built-in sounds. Let’s try it out. This is how you set a reminder.

RemindMe

And this is what the pop-up looks like.

RemindMe test

You can hit ok to dismiss the reminder, or click the postpone button on the left to snooze the reminder by using the format h:m (hours:minutes), for example 1h30m to postpone it by 90 minutes.

Go back to the Reminders tab and you will see all your created reminders listed on the right pane, with their title, date and time. Click on the cog button to Preview a reminder, create a Duplicate, Hide it, Postpone the reminder, Skip to the next date (also postpones it), or delete the reminder permanently. The power button can be used to enable or disable a reminder, while the recycle bin deletes it. In case you made a mistake, just hit the pencil icon and you will be able to edit the reminder without starting over.

Advanced Reminders

Click on the Settings tab on the left and enable Advanced Reminders, and you’ll see an extra option in the new Reminders screen. Selecting Advanced Reminders allows you to paste a Windows Batch file code (.Bat), that will be executed when the reminder is triggered. That’s an interesting way to automate things.

RemindMe timer

The Timer tab in RemindMe is useful when you want a short-term reminder. Set the number of hours, minutes and seconds you want the reminder to appear after, and add a note if you want to. Hit the enter button to start the timer, and wait for the notification to pop-up. Use the key combo Shift + Control + R to set a quick timer. The application has a built-in backup tool, which can be used to export and import reminders individually or all at once. The backup is saved as a .remindme file that the program can read.

The popup notification size can be customized from the “Resize popup” tab. It lets you adjust the width, height, title font, popup description font. The built-in “test changes” option can be used to preview the modifications before you save them.

RemindMe is a C# based application. It’s only available as an installer, i.e., no portable version is available.

Wunderlist used to be my favorite desktop calendar program, before Microsoft acquired it and eventually abandoned it. What’s your’s?

RemindMe

For Windows

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clipLogger is a freeware tool that captures text that's been copied to the clipboard

There are quite a few good replacements for the Windows Clipboard. Let’s take a look at a freeware program called clipLogger and find out how useful it is.

The GUI of the application has a large pane where you can view the clipboard entries that the program has stored. Each entry that has been logged also has the date and time listed above it to indicate when the entry was made.  URLs that are saved are clickable, but if you don’t like that you can disable the option from the Settings.

clipLogger is not like your traditional clipboard manager applications like Ditto, CopyQ, or ClipAngel. It does not offer options to copy items with a click of the mouse. In fact the content pane is more of a text editor.

There are 2 options at the top of the window: Text and Filenames. These are pre-enabled to allow the program to save text content from the clipboard plus the name and the full path of files that you copied in Windows Explorer. clipLogger can also catch the filename and path when you drag and drop files in Explorer.

Did you notice that the title bar of the application reads Clipboard Logger / Drag&Drop Catcher?

CLipLogger search bar

Click on the magnifying glass icon (or use the F9 key) to bring up the search bar; this is useful if you want to find some specific text that has been stored by the application. Apart from the standard search options, you can also opt to search from the cursor and the beginning. The Hide button puts the program on the system tray and continues the logging process in the background.

Does not store the history by default

Another unusual feature in clipLogger is that it does not store the clipboard history by default but it does have an option to store the data though. Open the settings menu from the bottom left corner of the program’s interface and select the “Backup contents to file” option. The program will then save the contents to a file called clipBoardBackup.Txt, which is created in the program’s folder.

Note that it will write any Clipboard data to the text file including important information such as passwords.

If you don’t want to do that, you have two options for manually saving the data. Select the text content and paste it into a text document, or use the more convenient way and right-click inside the program’s window pick the “Save content as” option which direct saves the data to a plain text file (.TXT).

Advanced options

ClipLogger can be set to start with Windows. The “Play Sound on Capture” option uses a WAV audio file that you select, but if you’re like me and type and edit a lot of text, you’re probably better off not using this feature. The application allows you to set the font type, style, size and effects like strikeout and underline.

CLipLogger settings

The “Entry Header” setting can be customized per your requirements like new line, empty line or your custom header (n for new line, t for tab, %DATE% for the date and %TIME% for the time. You can also include separators (space or symbols like hyphen, period, backward slash, etc)

For e.g. %DATE% – %TIME% n will log the entry in the following format. Date – Time followed by the clipboard entry in the next line. So it will be displayed like this,

12/11/2019 – 20:15:31
Clipboard content

clipLogger is a portable application, and requires .Net 4 or above to run. I mostly tested the application without the backup enabled for long periods comprising 8+ hours, and it never crashed for me.

Did you know that Windows 10 has a clipboard history tool? Have you used it?

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