/// Friday, October 28

Must-have free Win utilities

AutoHotKey: Program your keyboard to do anything. Use it to map or remap your entire keyboard. For example, I have Win+V start Visual Studio, Win+space to start a command window, PrtScrn to start Snagit. More powerful than any commercial keyboard utility, guaranteed.

Autoruns: These guys probably know more about Windows internals than Microsoft. This utility shows you *every* exe, dll that runs at startup with the option to prevent them.

CDX: A change directory utility for the command line. When you type cdx an Explorer dialog pops up to select your folder. Use the arrows key to select your folder. Right arrow to expand. Left arrow to contract. Hit enter. You don't need no stinkin' mouse and the focus remains on the command line. It's faster than Tab. The link is direct to the download since I don't read Japanese. Winrar will open the LZH file.

KeyNote: Jot your ideas down in a tree-type (outline) metaphor. Use it to store code snippets, URLs or whatever.

Regulator: A regular expression builder, tester focused on .NET regular expressions. This was featured on "Ten must have tools...". I don't mention the others in that article, you probably use or know of them.

Smart Paster: Grabs text from the clipboard and pastes it into Visual Studio as a StringBuilder, string, comment, etc. Saves you from having to escape newline, tabs, quotes, etc.

I think a generic taskbar applet that has the functionality of Smart Paster would be neat. This way it could be used in any editor, IDE. Hmmm ... maybe my first GUI-based Boo app. Of course it would have to be extensible so you could do things like convert to HTML.

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