Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Windows 7 and Windows Vista features on Windows XP

After getting used to working with Windows 7 exclusively at home and at my old job, I have found it somewhat difficult to go back to using Windows XP Professional at my new job. Some of the new Windows 7 features are undeniably awesome and difficult to live without. I use Start Search to launch most of my common programs without navigating the All Programs list and I use Start Search as the run command exclusively. Aero Peek is very helpful when having multiple tabs open in Internet Explorer. And last, I was finally used to the new Windows Explorer. Well now that is all gone, at least for a little while. But in the mean time, I found some very cool add-ons for Windows XP that helps to provide some of the common Windows 7 features.

Lee-Soft.com has 4 different options available that helps provide Windows 7-like features on Windows XP. ViStart is aimage  Windows Vista\Windows 7-style start menu,

ViGlance the Windows 7 superbar,

ViSplore a vista-style file manager,

and ViOrb the Vista Start button.

The great thing about all of these applications is that they are extremely small applications between 200k and 1mb in size and they use very little resources. All of them are free so if you have a Windows XP or Windows Vista computer feel free to give these a try! (Screenshot to the left was taken from a Windows XP computer running ViStart, ViGlance, and ViOrb.)

The last thing that I want to talk about is AeroSnap. Aero Snap is that cool little feature where you can 'snap' a program to a imagefull 50% side of the screen. Some other developer created a tool that will do this for you in Windows XP or Windows Vista. It runs in the task tray as a service.

Well that about does it for the tools that I have been using on my un-new Windows XP workstation. If you find any other similar tools that you like, feel free to leave a comment.