Windows software of the day [July 21, 2012]

Today’s Software

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About Windows Software of the Day

Windows has hundreds of thousands of programs. Because of this great volume and lack of a central store, software discovery (aka finding new and useful programs) is extremely difficult. With our Windows Software of the Day initiative, dotTech aims to change that. Everyday we post three programs, allowing our readers to discover new software, daily. Enjoy! [Subscribe to our Windows section to never miss an article: RSS Feed | E-mail]

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Software for July 21, 2012


Do you have your desktop in the center and laptop to one side? If you’re constantly dealing with multiple computers, you probably sometimes try to move your mouse to the border of one’s screen to move it to the other’s as though they’re just a set of dual monitors. With Synergy, you can do that.

First, install Synergy on the computer that has the mouse and keyboard you want to primarily use. Be sure to set it up as a server! Then, install Synergy on your other computers, setting it up as a client. Go back to your server and arrange the monitors in their correct positions. If you’re having trouble setting up your computers with Synergy, there’s a great tutorial for setting it up available here.

Synergy works well–so well, it feels like you’re  synergising your computers. (OK, not really.) If you’re constantly using two computers next to each other, Synergy is definitely worth an install.

Price: Free!

Version discovered: v1.4.9 Beta

Supported OS: Windows/OS X/Linux

Download size: 17.7-18.5MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 32-bit 1/42 | 64-bit 0/41

Portability: Requires installation

Synergy homepage

Mission Control / Expose Clone W7

Want a beautiful window switching interface like our Mac-using enemies friends? Mission Control / Expose Clone W7 is a long-winded program that lets you get the fancy interface shown to the left, comprising of a clean interface to switch between various windows with live previews.

Mission Control / Expose Clone W7 isn’t like a lot of software. It does one thing, and does it quite well. When you start it up, it’ll immediately go into window-switching mode, and when you select a window, it will close. You can use it like this if you just pin a shortcut of it to your taskbar or other similarly accessible place.

If you’re looking to use a keyboard shortcut, first create a regular shortcut to it. It can be located anywhere, but you’ll need to use that shortcut to start the program. Edit the shortcut and in the Target field add -resident. Start up the program using the shortcut, and whenever you press Ctrl+Tab, the awesome new interface will open.

All things considered, MC/ECW7 is a nice little program for those looking for more eye candy on their computer.

Price: Free!

Version Discovered: v3.03 Beta

Supported OS: Windows unknown

Download size: 377KB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/42

Portability: Entirely portable!

Mission Control / Expose Clone W7 homepage

[via AddictiveTips]

Take a Break

You spend too much time on your computer. Your eyes are strained; your back hurts after hours spent sitting; you know you need to do something, but don’t know what to do. Take a Break! Seriously: Take a Break is a free app that lets you know when it’s time to take a break.

Take a Break lets you set its various timers to whatever amounts you need, but its defaults of a one hour main timer and 10 minute snooze and break timers seemed to work well for me. You can also set up security while you’re on your breaks: you can automatically start your screensaver or lock your computer. While good for security, these are also quite helpful if you need some pushing in order to get off the computer.

Lastly, Take a Break also shows you a handy chart of work time related to break time. It gives the ratio, allowing you decide if you spend enough time breaking. It’s quite a useful program, and while it won’t win any awards in the design department, it’s certainly useful for those who want a little push to take a break.

Price: Free!

Version Discovered: v3.0

Supported OS: Windows XP+

Download size: 1.7MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/42

Portability: Requires installation

Take a Break homepage

[via AddictiveTips]

dotTechies: We have tested all the software listed above. However, Windows Software of the Day articles are not intended as “reviews” but rather as “heads-up” to help you discover new programs. Always use your best judgement when downloading programs, such as trying trial/free versions before purchasing shareware programs, if applicable.

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