[Windows] 1-abc Clipboard Organizer is a lightweight, portable clipboard manager that provides you with four clipboards

2013-02-03_215702Windows Clipboard is a nifty feature of Windows that allows users to paste the last thing they cut or copied. However, Windows Clipboard is a bit limiting, especially when it comes to trying to be able to paste something you copied prior to your latest clip. That is why third-party clipboard managers were invented. Today we have a look at one such program, 1-abc Clipboard Organizer.

WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT DO

Main Functionality

1-abc Clipboard Organizer is a clipboard manager. It keeps track of everything you cut or copy, allowing you to easily paste something you copied before your more recent clip. On top of that, Clipboard Organizer provides you with three additional clipboard (i.e. four clipboards in total, when you county Windows Clipboard). This means you can cut/copy different content to each clipboard.

Pros

  • Keeps track of everything you cut or copy
  • Allows you to easily paste a previous clip
  • Provides you with three additional clipboards, meaning you have a total of four clipboards at your disposal with this program
  • Supports hotkeys for each of the clipboards
  • Can be installed on your internal hard drive (e.g. C:/ partition) or on removable media such as external hard drives, USB/thumb drives, etc. (i.e. can be made portable)
  • Has the ability to export saved clips to .TXT and/or print them
  • Has the native ability to automatically start at Windows boot, which is a common but useful feature for a clipboard manager
    • This ability to automatically start at Windows boot is disabled by default (you need to manually enable it if you want it), so it won’t annoy those of you who hate it when programs add themselves to Windows boot
  • When minimized, Clipboard Organizer stays in your system tray instead of taskbar so as to stay out of your way while you work or play

Cons

  • Does not support rich-text, images, files, etc. — only supports plain-text
  • The extra clipboards have hotkeys for copy and paste but not for cut
  • Cannot customize the hotkeys for the extra clipboards
  • Can be made portable but has poorly implemented portability

Discussion

2013-02-03_2157091-abc Clipboard Organizer is a clipboard manager that provides two main functionality.

First, Clipboard Organizer keeps track of your Windows Clipboard. Anything you cut or copy is recorded by Clipboard Organizer and you have the ability to paste any clip at ease. Restoring a previous clip is very easy; simply open Clipboard Organizer and double-click the clip you want to use from the ‘Clipboard Report’ tab. That clip is then put at the front of Windows Clipboard and you can paste it wherever you want. If you want to bring a clip to the front of a different clipboard, instead of double-clicking the clip you single left-click it and then click the ‘Copy to Clipboard X’ button, with X being the number of the clipboard you desire.

Second, Clipboard Organizer expands the amount of clipboards you have. In addition to Windows Clipboard, Clipboard Organizer gives you three more clipboards. These three additional clipboards work just like Windows Clipboard and their history is tracked the same way by Clipboard Organizer. Like how Windows Clipboard works with the Ctrl + C (copy) and Ctrl + V (paste), the three additional clipboards also have their own hotkeys (Ctrl + Shift + 5 and Ctrl + Shift + 2 for copy and paste related to clipboard 2, Ctrl + Shift + 6 and Ctrl + Shift + 3 for copy and paste related to clipboard 3, and Ctrl + Shift + 7 and Ctrl + Shift + 4 for copy and paste related to clipboard 4).

Unfortunately, while Windows Clipboard also works with Ctrl + X (cut), there doesn’t appear to be any cut hotkeys for the additional three clipboards. Plus there is no way to customize the hotkeys for those three extra keyboards — you must use the defaults provided by the developer.

Other features of Clipboard Organizer include:

  • The ability output saved clips to a TXT file
  • The ability to print saved clips
  • The ability to manually modify the latest clip in each clipboard (done via the ‘Extended Clipboard’ tab)
  • The ability to make Clipboard Organizer automatically run at Windows boot (this feature is disabled by default; if you want to use it, you need to manually enable it via the ‘Options’ tab)
  • The ability to automatically minimize Clipboard Organizer to system tray when it is turned on (this feature is enabled by default; if you don’t want it, you need to manually disable it via the ‘Options’ tab)
  • The ability to modify where the file storing the recorded clips is stored. By default this file is stored in the Data Roaming folder of your computer but you can modify this via the ‘Options’ tab.
  • The ability to empty the data file storing recorded clips or to delete the file itself.

That said, there is one major issue I have with Clipboard Organizer: it doesn’t support rich-text or images. What I mean is, whenever you copy something, Clipboard Organizer records it and strips all text formatting and all images/files/etc. from the clip. When you go to restore a clip with Clipboard Organizer, you will get the plain-text version of the clip — no original text formatting and everything except text (images, files, etc.) is removed. This is a huge drawback to Clipboard Organizer and essentially kills the programs. I mean, yeah, there is merit to purifying text (i.e. turning rich-text to plain-text) and some people desire that functionality. However, the ability to purify text should be an optional value-added feature in a clipboard manager; you shouldn’t simply just not support rich-text and other content at all.

Another issue I have with Clipboard Organizer is the states “Program can also be installed on USB sticks, floppy disks or nearly all other re-writable media” which implies the program is portable. The program is portable but the portablity aspect of it is very poorly implemented. Yes, you can install Clipboard Organizer onto removable media such as a USB flash drive and yes Clipboard Organizer will run from that USB flash drive on any computer without requiring an install. The issue, however, is:

  • Firstly, you must install Clipboard Organizer on removable drives. True portable programs need not be installed; they come as a portable executable you can simply copy + paste onto a removable drive (no pun intended) and double-click to run.
  • Secondly, by default Clipboard Organizer is set to store the file that keeps track of clips locally on your computer, in the AppData (or AppData equivalent) folder. This means whenever you move from computer-to-computer with the removable drive Clipboard Organizer is on, not only will you leave behind the file that stores your clips on each computer (which is a security risk in and of itself) but you also won’t carryover your clips from computer-to-computer… which sort of kills half the use of being a ‘portable’ program. To avoid this issue, you have to remember to manually modify the path for the data file via the ‘Options’ tab once you install Clipboard Organizer on a removable drive. The good thing is Clipboard Organizer generates a data file in the same location as where you install it (e.g. USB flash drive) so you can easily select that data file to use when you put the program on a removable drive.

Lastly, one thing that irks me about Clipboard Organizer (something that I have not mentioned yet in this review) is what Clipboard Organizer does when you recall a previously copied or cut clip. As mentioned earlier, if you want to paste an older clip, you simply open Clipboard Organizer, go to ‘Clipboard Report’ tab, and either double-click the clip or single-click + click a button. What irks me is when you do that, Clipboard Organizer creates a new entry in ‘Clipboard Report’. So, essentially, when you bring an old clip to the front, you essentially have two entries for the same clip in Clipboard Organizer. If you bring that clip to the front multiple times, you have multiple entries. This means your ‘Clipboard Report’ will become unnecessarily congested with the same clips. Annoying!

CONCLUSION AND DOWNLOAD LINK

If dotTech still used those ‘rejected’, ‘good’, ‘recommended’, and ‘ordinary’ stamps, 1-abc Clipboard Organizer would squarely quality for the ‘ordinary’ category. Yes, it is a clipboard manager that keeps tracks of clips. Yes, it gives you additional clipboard. Yes, it can be made portable. However, the inability to support rich-text (and related content, such as images) and the piss-poor portability implementation makes this program a hard swallow… especially when you consider the developer wants $19.99 for it!

Trust me when I say this: you will find must better freeware clipboard managers. Much better. Much, much better. Check out dotTech’s review of Best Free Clipboard Manager for Windows to learn about some excellent clipboard managers. Or if you don’t necessarily want clipboard tracking capabilities but would like to have multiple clipboards, check out TenClips.

Price: $19.99

Version reviewed: v3.00

Supported OS: Windows XP/Vista/Win7

Download size: 352 KB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/46

Is it portable? Yes

1-abc Clipboard Organizer homepage

Share this post

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

4 comments

  1. pohanginapete

    @Starlight: Spartan has a free version, Spartan Lite, which also comes in a portable version so you can put it in a Dropbox folder (or equivalent) and sync your clips over all your computers.

    The free version only stores 25 clips in each ‘sheet’ (=clipboard), but each sheet has two columns, one of which stores clips permanently. I’ve tried other clipboard managers, including Arsclip (an astonishingly ill-conceived but hilarious name from the point of view of anyone from New Zealand or Australia) and Ditto, but Spartan Lite suits me better than any of those. YMMV.

    I second your thanks to Ashraf.

  2. JC

    Ashraf I personally think you should still use your old overall rating system. As it is now its sometimes somewhat difficult to know what your recommendation actually would be.

    I’m a bit of a techie so I can evaluate them on my own certainly, but I also highly value your impressions, and like it when they are quite clear via something like the rating system you once used. While not everything perhaps, That does make a difference, especially if the product is otherwise somewhat borderline.

    In this case, ultimately I might conclude your rating would be ‘less than necessary to have’ or probably even ‘rejected’ as compared to what else is available, especially as a freebie. I agree with you that a big negative here is the inability to support formats other than text. Lots of alternatives support them all.

    One of my personal favorites although a bit old, is Yankee Clipper III. But I haven’ t evaluated a whole bunch of these.

    As always, thanks for all you do here kind sir.

    -JC

    .

  3. Starlight

    A very good clipboard program I had once is “Spartan”.

    I used it for a long time after getting it free from GOTD but then got so used to it that when I did a Windows reinstall I forgot I wouldn’t be able to reinstall it and it got lost along the way.

    I learned my lesson though and I now make a daily backup and system restore point (on shutdown and bootup respectively) to an external hard drive that now acts as a “clipboard” for programs (in a backup) that I definitely want to keep but wouldn’t be able to reinstall in any other way (that I know of or that I am currently capable of with my limited tech knowledge)

    I am still learning heaps from you though Ashraf and your dotTech people, even things like courtesy and manners and tech-ettiquette plus not to be too narrow minded about things like I was once upon a time before I discovered dotTech

    You certainly are a good teacher whatever your age or background are!

    Thank you