Posted by mikeg on May 10, 2009
I’ve been a big fan of X1 (excellent email/desktop search) for a long time and have been introducing people to it. Not only it is an excellent product, when I ran into issues on Windows XP 64-bit (OS that is not officially supported), customer support went beyond my expectation to try to find the reason for my problems. Very impressed with their approach — I don’t know how big the company is, but it gives off an impression of a large corporation that mostly focuses on Enterprises with consumers being a small part. My experience have been very positive as a “consumer” and I will certainly continue recommending X1 to my “consumer friends” as well as my Enterprise customers.
Special thanks to Chris Wheaton who tracked and worked with me on the issue for over 2 months.
Overview of the issues I encountered:
I recently switched to XP 64-bit to take advantage of 4GB RAM (I tend to run many applications at the same time) and experienced a few issues with X1:
- deskbar is not available (x1 said that it is a known issue on XP 64-bit)
- I experienced intermittent crashes, which seemed to be related to standy/hibernate
Over the course of 2 months since I reported the issue to X1 there were a few Windows Updates and the issue with crashes seemed to almost go away. It is not completely gone, but is very infrequent. As I didn’t update X1 to the new version, I imagine Microsoft changed a few things that favorably affected X1 stability.
While I am pretty happy with 64-bit (waiting to use it for 6-12 months to make my final judgement), random applications (Ex: Skype, Pidgin) crash once in a while. Not enough to bother me too much, but also giving some indication that X1 crash problems might be more of OS issue than their code.
Posted in Utilities | Tagged: 64-bit, x1 | Leave a Comment »
Posted by mikeg on July 12, 2008
Launchy is a great little utility that is not so great about CPU utilization. It is constantly taking up 30-40% even though default scanning interval is kept at 10 min.
I guess it is back to SlickRun
Posted in Utilities | Tagged: cpu, launchy, slickrun | 3 Comments »
Posted by mikeg on January 10, 2008
Having a small child I take a lot of pictures and I do not download them to my computer very frequently. That makes sorting and filing pictures a chore that takes quite a bit of time. I also try to be organized by filing pictures into appropriate folders and giving them meaningful names (I will have a separate post on my current “digital pictures workflow” and tools I use).
Not satisfied with limitations of Windows XP built-in rename functionality, I started searching for a utility that will help me with that task. After trying 4-5 different programs (commercial and free), I purchased the following tool: Better File Rename (v5).
BFR (Better File Rename) has a few nice options:
- Context menu integration which you can invoke on set of files or a folder
- Extensive list of built-in actions
- You can also drag and drop files into it once it is open
- “Droplet” support — see below for screenshot explaining what it does
A few notes:
- The easiest UI/richest set of built-in actions of all the tools I’ve tested
- Took me a minute to find “produce numbered list” — that’s probably the most frequent action I will use when filing my pictures
- Only $20/user — on any number of computers. This is important for me because I have a laptop, desktop and sometimes do this on my wife’s laptop
- Take a look at this page if you are interested in other tools. It also provides links that explain how to perform renames in tools you already use (Photoshop, IrfanView, etc): http://graphicssoft.about.com/od/renamers/Batch_Rename_Picture_Files_Tools_Tips.htm
Here is what UI looks like:
- I really liked the fact that I can “layer” my actions by performing multiple actions in a row
- There is a very impressive set of “actions” (everything from “produce numbered list” to “insert”, “replace”, “regular expressions” and many more)
- For every action you have a number of options that are configurable
- Preview of what the new name will look like
Here is what I would like to see in the next version:
- Preview support for images
- Improvements to “manual rename” — specify prefix, suffix and then allow me to manually rename each file. This only makes sense if preview support for images is implemented
- There is “droplet” functionality, but I would like to be able to load droplet into BFR as preset
- Ability to update EXIF/IPTC info for images
Here is the full list of actions:
Let me know what tools you use for your file renaming/image processing needs.
Posted in Digital Pictures, Utilities | 2 Comments »