[Windows] AllMyNotes Organizer is a feature-filled note-taking program

2013-03-24_220225Nowadays there are plenty of ways to take and store notes. For example, there is the ever popular Evernote and the recently released Google Keep. However, if you are unhappy with note-taking services that are based in the cloud and prefer an offline solution, AllMyNotes Organizer may be what you are looking for. Let’s see if it is worth your time.

WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT DO

Main Functionality

AllMyNotes Organizer is a note-taking program that can be used for various purposes, such as for taking notes in class, recording your thoughts, as a diary, writing books, organizing notes, etc.

2013-03-24_224518Take note AllMyNotes Organizer has AllMyNotes Organizer Free Edition (free version) and AllMyNotes Organizer Deluxe Edition (paid version). The differences between the two can be found in the chart to the right. This review specifically looked at AllMyNotes Organizer Deluxe Edition.

Pros

  • Supports rich-text notes — bold, italics, underline, font type, font size, right/center/left aligned, color, background color, bullets, numbered lists, hyperlinks, and checkboxes
  • Supports images in notes (JPG/JPEG, PNG, GIF, and BMP)
  • Allows users to insert tables into notes
  • Notes can have files attached to them and can have alarms/reminders
  • Has an easy way to insert date and timestamp in notes
  • Has a built-in spell checker
  • Has powerful built-in search, search that can look inside a specific note or through all notes
  • Notes are organized in a hierarchical tree format with folder and subfolders
    • Folders/notes in tree can be customized by icon and color
  • Notes and/or folders can be marked as “completed”
  • Deleted notes/folders are sent to the program’s Recycle Bin, allowing you to easily recover them if you accidentally delete. Notes/folders deleted from Recycle Bin are permanently deleted.
  • Can create a new note with text/images copied (i.e. create a new note with content from Windows Clipboard)
  • Notes are auto saved every X minutes (3 minutes by default — you can change this from settings), ensuring minimal data loss if the program or your computer crash
  • Can have multiple databases, if you want to keep your notes separate for different tasks or if more than one person wants to use this program
  • Each database can be password protected
  • Databases are automatically backed up
  • Can print notes, with support for print preview
  • Supports undo/redo and copy/paste
  • Has multiple different program skins to pick from
  • Can import notes from RTF, TXT, HTML, CSV, KNT, and ENEX files
  • Can export notes to RTF, HTM/HTML, and TXT
  • Has a built-in password generator
  • Is portable

Cons

  • Cannot tag notes
  • Would be nice to have tabs and multiple panes
  • Buttons for inserting hyperlinks and checkboxes are not on the formatting toolbar for notes; you have to right-click to access them. I’m not sure why the developer didn’t add buttons for them but I’d imagine these are commonly used functions that most people would appreciate having alongside all the other formatting buttons.
  • Needs hotkey support for creating new note from Windows Clipboard content
  • Automatic backups of notes database(s) are stored in the same folder as the database itself (i.e. in Documents\AllMyNotes), which is really stupid and defeats the purpose of backups in the first place. You can manually change where backups are stored via Options.
  • Sets itself to automatically start at Windows startup. Most people probably don’t want a note-taking program to always be on; most people probably only want it to be on when they need it. Thankfully, you can disable this behavior from Options.
  • All skins are fairly ugly
  • $34 is a bit high price in the day and age of free note-taking programs. $20 would be a much better price.

Discussion

2013-03-24_221810AllMyNotes Organizer describes itself as “the best tool for everyday use – diary, project-management, scheduler, address-management, storing access codes, and so much more”. However, essentially AllMyNotes Organizer is a note-taking app. It is a feature-filled note-taking app, but is a note-taking app nonetheless. Granted, it may not sound very good on paper but when you start to use the program, you will probably agree with me: it is one of the better note-taking programs out there.

Indeed, AllMyNotes Organizer has pretty much all the features desired in a note-taking app plus is extremely easy to use (see ‘Pros’ list above). All these features allow users to use AllMyNotes Organizer for more than just taking notes. For example, the ability to insert checkboxes (for use alongside lists) in notes and the ability to use alarms/reminders allow AllMyNotes Organizer to double as a to-do list. Or you can potentially use AllMyNotes Organizer as a way to keep track of your contacts and use the alarm feature to remind of you birthdays. Or you can use AllMyNotes Organizer to create lists. Or you can use AllMyNotes Organizer to save sensitive data (since it can be password protected). Or you can simply use AllMyNotes Organizer for taking notes. Whatever the need, if it involves some aspect of text, images, and tables, then AllMyNotes Organizer can probably do it.

The only major feature I find to be missing in AllMyNotes Organizer is the ability to tag notes, but, as per my experience (this is my second time reviewing AllMyNotes Organizer), the developer is very receptive to feedback and will probably add the ability to tag notes when someone points it out to him.

That said, the biggest issue I have with AllMyNotes Organizer is price. The Deluxe Edition costs $34, which is quite a large ask if you consider the fact that there are so many free note-taking services out there, such as Evernote. Granted, there is Free Edition which costs $0 and Deluxe Edition is often on sale (e.g. it is on sale for $24 at the time of this writing). However, I do feel $20 is a much better price for a program that has tons of alternatives.

CONCLUSION AND DOWNLOAD LINK

AllMyNotes Organizer is one of the better note-taking programs I have used. That doesn’t mean it is perfect; it isn’t perfect, such as the lack of tagging. However, I feel confident in recommending this program to anyone that wants or needs an offline note-taking program. Of course, as I just mentioned, I feel at $34 Deluxe Edition is overpriced but it is often on sale plus there is Free Edition for those that don’t want to pay for Deluxe.

If you are looking for freeware note-taking solutions, as I have mentioned many times there is AllMyNotes Organizer Free Edition which you can try. If you don’t like that, you can check out CintaNotes, FreeText, or NoteClip. There are also many free cloud-based note-taking services with Evernote and Google Keep coming to mind.

Price: $34

Version reviewed: 2.70 (Build 546)

Supported OS: Windows 2000 and higher

Download size: 4.5 MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/46

Is it portable? Yes

AllMyNotes Organizer homepage

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13 comments

  1. RobCr

    I RETRACT my recommendation of TreeDBNotes. It is giving a path error, which I suspect relates to inbuilt (and hard to disable) auto backup features.

    I am looking to recommend a program to a friend, so that he can create instruction manuals.
    Linking will be needed, so he probably will need the purchased version of say AllMyNotes, or Treepad (thanks Steve).
    Does anyone have a link to example instruction manuals that have been created in either of those programs ?

    Thanks,
    Rob

  2. Joe Schmoe

    It is not stupid at all to have backups in the same folder as the original database; your comment in the review is nonsense.
    The main purpose of doing a backup of a database is in case the in-use database is corrupted and unusable. For that purpose it is perfectly logical to have backups in the same location.

    Why is it ‘stupid’? Are you thinking you’ll accidentally delete the folder or something? That’s what hard drive backups are for. Are you thinking the hard drive will fail? That’s what hard drive backups are for. Besides how can software automatically assume you have a secondary drive that you’ll want to put the backups on? Of course the default is to place backups in the same folder. Besides, how is some different folder on the same hard drive any safer?

  3. Steve

    [@S.W. Anderson]

    I, too, am happy with TreePad Business. In fact, I’ve used various versions of TreePad from its beginning. The fellow that developed it is named Henk and it comes from the Netherlands.

    Other, some non-free programs worth considering are: Inspration, myBase, UltraRecall, Suirfulater, KeyNote NF, Noteliner. Stay away from NoteMap. It may lose your info irretrievably.

  4. Mark

    Regarding the confusion about CintaNotes’ being free or not, this is from the company’s homepage (quoting verbatim):
    “Apr 10, 2012 — First Commercial Release! Version 1.6
    License change notice: with this version, the licensing model changes to “Freemium”. Basic functionality (which covers all features of version 1.5.7) continues to be free, but the new commercial features require buying a Personal or Company license.”

  5. S.W. Anderson

    Please let me put in a good word for Treepad. It has a quite-limited free version in both Windows and Linux versions, so users can get a feel for how it works and what it will do. The paid versions are several orders of magnitude more capable.

    About five years ago I paid for Treepad Business version, $39.95. It’s powerful, fast, flexible and being continually upgraded. All upgrades have been free. The guy who wrote it is as dedicated as he is talented. It does everything but wash your dog for you. :)

    There’s also a crypto-secured version.

    My one disappointment is that there is no Treepad version for Android. Unless something has been announced in the past two or three months, there isn’t an Android version in the works, either. I hope that will change.

    Disclaimer: I have no connection with Treepad’s author except as a satisfied customer.

  6. Mr.Dave

    Thanks everyone for all the suggestions, lots of good stuff to try out. I’m using Evernote for most of my note-taking these days but like to see how other programs work.

    Does anyone know of a free note-taking tool that lets you define relationships between notes? I find that capability very handy but have only seen it in high-priced mapping tools. Not really a tag on a note, but a tag that says how notes are related. It’s useful for modeling systems, or gathering information about them, but works in other areas. The cool thing about it is that you can be looking at a note, and see all the other notes related to it. The relationship tag tells you which other notes might be best to look at for whatever you’re trying to find out. The absence of a given type of relation tells you where more information is needed. A system I developed long ago (using Excel 4 macros!) let you jump from one note to another by the relationship tags.

  7. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    [@RobCr] [@jumbi] [@RobCr] Thanks for feedback!

    [@Giovanni] I, like everyone else, appreciate the feedback and suggestions you give. However, please don’t spread false information if you haven’t tested a program. CintaNotes is still free — it just has a paid version people can upgrade to for more features. Thanks for the other suggestions!

  8. Giovanni

    Hey Ashraf!!
    Your reviews are always top-notch and very informative, but sometimes lack of good FREE alternatives.
    For instance CINTA NOTES is no longer freeware…did you know that??

    BEST FREE ALTERNATIVE I recommend using is a magic PORTABLE app called “Portable MyShelf Desktop “.

    It’s a multiplatform (Windows, MAC, LINUX) tool designed to keep in sync your most important notes, pictures, links and text snippets of any kind always at your disposal in your mobile phone, tablet, notebook or PC desktop. Notes are very easy to find because, unlike this GAOTD, this program creates THUMBNAILS for every new entry, also enabling users to create and edit their own tags.
    Best of all, unlike other similar (paid & free) apps it does not rely on any cloud service out there, so with this magic tool you can ki$$ any kind of hassle (privacy concerns, service downtimes network issues and above all the monthly service fees and damn premium features fees for storing and syncing your data) goodbye for good.
    Amazing, isn’t it?

    http://www.encomit.de/myshelf/index.html

    Another good one is this (it’s also PORTABLE)

    http://www.smartgoldfish.com/download.html

    As you can see, this is a very secure and easy to use FREE note taking tool featuring both integrated file management and blogging capabilities.
    Unlike this GAOTD (worth $34), notes of the same topic can be easily grouped together using TAGS, and are even encrypted and stored on users’ local HD, flash drives, network drives or even on file hosting services such as Dropbox.
    can preserve the format of URLs and contents pasted in from the web, enabling users to attach files & folders to their notes via drag/drop or copy/paste, as well as connect DIFFERENT NOTES together. Notes can even be shared to your friends and relatives via a PRIVATE LINK published to the KNote Blog, which can be accessed only by those you send the link to, thus giving them the ability to leave a comment.

    See also:
    http://www.resoph.com/ResophNotes/Welcome.html
    http://www.softpedia.com/get/PORTABLE-SOFTWARE/Office/Calendar-Organizers/Portable-Efficient-Sticky-Notes.shtml
    http://zim-wiki.org/index.html

    ALL FREE & PORTABLE and above all better than this GAOTD: do you agree with me??

    Enjoy!!

  9. RobCr

    I have tried AllMyNotes before, and was instantly put off by showing Folders on the right (INSTEAD of allowing us to have Notes/images/etc at any level of Note).
    Also as Ashraf pointed out, that program lacks Tabs (which TreeDBNotes has).
    . . .
    My vote goes to TreeDBNotes Free.

  10. jumbi

    just a quick note which may be interesting to many:

    AllMyNotes Organizer cannot run from dropbox folder.
    Cintanotes, runs fine!

    (I haven’t tested others, because I like Cintanotes and also using Evernote for general clipping from browsers).

  11. RobCr

    Hi Ashraf,
    I posted the text below in one of your other threads.
    Did you read it, and check out that program (TreeDBNotes Free) ?
    How would you compare it to today’s giveaway ?

    I will certainly download the giveaway, and check it out, but your early opinion (TreeDBNotes vs today’s giveaway), might assist others, early in the giveaway period.
    . . .
    . . .

    Here is the greatest FREE Note Tree program on the planet –
    TreeDBNotes
    You can make a portable version.
    You can create individual files for say –
    Health, PCs, Software, Electronics, Money, etc.
    You can, within any one of those files, have multiple Trees (they appear as Tabs along the top).
    Within any Tree (Tab), you create Folders (in the column down the left)
    You can create sub folders, under each folder.
    (Folders and sub folders are also referred to as Notes.)
    You can Have Rich Text and images on the right, for any level of your Folders.
    There are numerous options for how you can distribute files to friends.
    . . .
    I was an analyst (and programmer) for 20 years in large Banks, and Telecommunications, and never had a failed project. Yet with all that experience I could not develop a better program than TreeDBNotes

    Rob
    PS I have a folder where I keep the individual files (Health, Money, Software, etc). I just double click which ever file that I am wishing to open.