6 more free Productivity Tools for Win 10

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Further to my previous post on 12 Free Productivity Tools for Win 10 (initially 8 but I added some more) I have since found a few more free programmes that can help with productivity.

RocketDock

RocketDock is a task bar, but it looks a bit like the Apple Task Bar and can be configured in a variety of ways. Download here. Here is a post on it being discontinued.  You can locate it on top, sides or bottom of your screen, it can also stay on top or disappear or have a variety of features such as transparency adjustment.In screenshot below I’ve got it at the top of my screen.

As someone who operated from the taskbar, this is a really handy tool. I have used SMALL TASKBAR BUTTONS in my Taskbar settings and I still have the taskbar full, so having a further location to put some more taskbar items is definitely a plus for me. You can put folder or files on it. Here is a quick video on it, there are others:

Quick Access Popup

Quick Access Popup(QAP) is a seriously impressive tool for windows productivity.  You can download it here.It is like Direct folders but on steroids. I was so impressed with the videos on it that I’ve uninstalled Direct Folders, which I was enjoying using, to install QAP instead. I will give a link to a longer video as it demonstrates a lot of impressive features of the tool, there are other shorter videos on the tool too. Look on the website link at the beginning.

One thing I found a bit of a nuisance in Direct Folders was clicking the wheel in a browser did not bring up the pop-up menu, in QAP it does, so its available anywhere.

The demo it gives for opening File Explorer and then wanting to go to another location and just using QAP to choose a specific folder and it goes there is so effective, this also works when you are in an Application and want to open a file and it goes to default opening folder of say “Documents” (Where I personally keep very little) using QAP and selecting a folder it immediately goes there, real time savers. Also, you can have HotKeys attached to these items as well.

It does Applications as well as folders, also it will work on remote drives (Eg Google Drive and OneDrive- I haven’t tested this out yet).

Another fantastic feature is “Live Folders” where a folder can also show sub-folders , also the Folder Icon Colour shows up as well, so that’s handy too.

You can group things together into one place, so if you have say:

  • An Excel File with Calculations
  •  A Word Doc report
  • A notepad with some links
  • a Website with a table that you are getting data from

Then if you click on the group it will open them all up together, so this is great in conjunction with say another desktop where you have a working environment for a specific project, it immediately opens all the items up, ready to go.

You can share menu’s with others (standard mappings to an .ini file) and also make it portable on a Flash Drive, so handy when traveling.

It has a nifty way of getting an applications location for file location. You start the application, then, when adding a new object, click on application and it will get where the programme is running from (watch the video above)

Also it does browser links, and activates them from your Default browser.

There is a Snippet tool too, such that you can have little pieces of text (have to check if HTML too). I want to research this as it may be great fora variety of  Signatures on Emails.

 

 

This is a serious productivity tool that I’d recommend you explore.

I think this tool could possibly replace the AutoHotKeys, ShortKeeper & Phrase Express, due to its versatility and depending on how you use it.

Microsoft Teams (free for less than 300 pax)

Microsoft Teams. A collaboration tool for teams. Apparently like slack. After a little play with it I quite like the structure. You setup a project and then you invite people to that project. So invited people are only associated with the projects you want to associate them with, not the whole environment.

The video below is a good overview:

Free version. Table link here.

Unfortunately, I have a 365 account (as I have office) so it signed me in on that account which is not what I intended. Anyway, from what I can see it has some quite powerful features. There is an App Store and lots of things in that. Currently I am logged into it under a Gmail account and the apps are still visible, so maybe they are just free tools within the programme.

The video conversation does not work in Firefox or Chrome browser (as in getting the picture) so I’m going to download the Desktop app to see if it works on that. You can download it at the bottom of the page here. Yes, it does work in the Desktop app.

There is also a mobile app too, so you can see conversations and also files. I haven’t tested the wiki’s yet.

I quite like the style of this tool. I am less confused looking and using it than I was with Trello and Slack, of which it is a contender.

This is quite a powerful tool. I may need to learn a bit more about it and do a separate post on it. Worth looking at, it seems to combine an awful lot of features and linking to others is not difficult.

Microsoft Flow

Microsoft Flow is an automation process like Zapier. There is a free version with these options:

Here is an overview video of the service:

So if you make a bot that does one operation a day, then that will be approx 30 in a month, so 750/30= 25. So you could have 25 bots doing a daily function for you.I think a lot of the bots are event triggered rather than time triggered so it updates when file comes in or some other event, so it would be easy to chew through 750 runs per month.

As its Microsoft it will integrate with a lot of its applications, including Team. I haven’t played with this yet but I’ll look to set up a bot or two. It integrates with Google Calendar, which is good, but only a one-way sync (from MS outlook to Google Calendar which I use). If I used Teanm a lot I could sync the  Outlook Calendar and the Google Calendar , see this article.

A lot of the time I cannot see too much leverage in some of these bots. Some look useful but I haven’t yet found one that meets my needs that I’d think I couldn’t do without.

Microsoft Sway (free)

Microsoft Sway. A storytelling app that you can download onto Windows 10 and host online. See the video below for an overview:

From an article by Laptop Mag Article.

The Pros. Storyboard-based presentation creation; Imported outlines from Word create instant presentations; Final Web-presentation looks great on all devices

The Cons. Very limited customization options; Prepackaged templates have basic appearance; Occasional hangs after continued use
Verdict. Microsoft Sway isn’t designed for your big presentation, but it’s perfect for personal presentation projects you want seen on the Web.

I’m wondering if its a good thing to put on my services site to tell a story about some of the products? It will only be a link but may add a level of information that may help.

Microsoft Office Online (free)

Microsoft Office Online. These are lighterweight versions of the desktop programmes but are great for viewing or reviewing files. I did look up Excel Macro’s for online Excel but they didn’t work. Still it is handy to have web based tools for viewing your information.

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