Favorite Computer Environment Tools

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The Deep Secrets of My Computing Environment!

In my computing environment, I have a set of tools that I rely on because they just make life easier.  Here they are in order of (perceived) actual usage.

Ditto

Ditto is a clipboard manager.  It can save up to 1000 of your last "clips".  It makes juggling multiple clips easy.  It runs with no preceived lag time whatsoever.  It might even save your butt someday.

  • You can make a clip sticky to keep it always on top. 
  • You can edit clips after they are captured.  This is handy when you copy a password but you aren't sure if it grabbed a trailing space.  Just go in and check, remove it, and save.
  • You can easily search your clips with plain text search or regular expression search.
  • You can see screenshots.
  • You can delete clips (important for passwords).
  • You can remove formatting from text (text only) by pasting with the shift key held down.  No more mixing formats in your emails when you paste!

This tool is not only handy, but it's efficient, practical, stable, and essential.  And free.

Here is a decent overview of Ditto, From YouTube

 

The only suggestion that I would change is to make your Ditto hot keys: Ctrl+` (That's the key above the Tab key and it isn't usually used for anything else.)

ShareX

Screenshots are essential to communication in the computer age.  ShareX is my screen capture tool of choice.  It integrates itself nicely by relying on the system's Print Screen button.  By simply pressing the Control (Ctrl) button and Print Screen, it freezes your screen allowing you to lasso any region for capture.  Once captured, you can annotate the image with highlights, arrows, square boxes, or even obfuscate sections to blur private data.

 

 

Keepass

You have to be able to keep your passwords straight.  Keepass is the time tested and reliable way to do so.  It isn't the most cutting-edge application, in terms of looks, but it does the job well.  There is an Android app (KeepAss Droid) that can also be used.  My preference is to keep the Keepass file in a drive that backs up to a cloud storage, which makes the passwords available from other computers, as well as my Android phone.

OneNote

Another app that syncs with the cloud and is accessible from any device is OneNote.  OneNote is great for storing everything I do, documenting everything as a knowledge base, and collaborating as a team.

The organization of data goes very broad with Notebooks, and very deep with tabs and then pages within a tab.  You can also group tabs for logical sections.

The search is real time.  This means that I can quickly search for a server name, employee name, ticket request number, etc., and see every note with that search term.  Also, pasted text is also searched using OCR.

The benefits and practicalness of OneNote go on and on.  The purpose of this is only to expose you to it.  The research from here on out is up to you.

Notepad++ (Regular Expressions and Macros)

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