|Soft As It Gets
||Recommended Software Tools
As a service to you we have put
together a list of tools which we have found to be very useful in our development
environment and feel that many of our customers will likewise find them of value.
We expect this list to evolve and
welcome suggestions about your favourite tools (beside ED of course!).
Builder by doubleT Inc.
spent quite a bit of time recently researching and evaluating
programs to record software demo's, so that I can make some
Quick Tours of our new product Surfulater. I looked at a range
of products including TurboDemo, Camtasia Studio, DemoCharge,
Instant Demo, Viewlet Cam and more. Suffice to say I was surprised
and disappointed in what I found. Some crashed, others were
hard to use or simply didn't provide the features I required.
was close to giving up I found Demo Builder (DB) and was impressed
from the very start. It has a fresh look and was the easiest
to use of the programs I looked at. Its recording capabilities
are quite good and its editing features are very good. There
is a thumbnail view so you can easily locate any frame and
a timeline which gives good control over the various objects
DB supports. These include balloon callouts, animated text,
notes, images, cursors etc. In addition there are effects
such as fade in and out, fly in etc. which can add a nice
extra zing to your demos.
found some annoyances such as no recognition of dual monitor
setups, and UI issues which hamper productivity a bit. But
these aside DB is the easily the best in its class as far
as I'm concerned. The Surfulater
movies will be available shortly and will show you what I've
achieved in a reasonably short amount of time. For more information
and a free trial visit the Demo
Builder web site.
by Quanticus S.A. de C.V.
is a stand alone reporting and query tool that connects to
unlimited databases, including Microsoft Access, Microsoft
SQL Server, MySQL, Oracle, FoxPro, Excel and almost any other
database through ODBC.
or database knowledge is required to explore and report your
data in our user-friendly environment.
web site for more information.
Mail by infacta ltd.
are a great way to keep in touch with your customers, and in
the Internet age the obvious means of delivery is email.
are various ways to manage and deliver emails to large groups
of people. Web server based programs are quite common, but
are often lacking in capabilities, such as sending HTML content,
verifying email address, delivering batches of emails so you
can stagger delivery, and tracking who has been sent what.
our recent research trip into bulk email applications we were
fortunate enough to stumble across Group Mail, which is a
Windows application which doesn't suffer from the drawbacks
outlined above. It was by far the most comprehensive bulk
email application we were able to find, and is also reasonably
easy to use and well priced.
Mail comes in three flavours, including a free version with
a limited recipient list size, which is more than adequate
to give you a good feel for the product. As you move up the
ladder you get the ability to use different sending techniques,
which can considerably speed up the delivery of large numbers
of emails, plus a range of very useful add-ins.
Mail add-ins deliver extra functionality such as Merging lists
of recipients, Email address verification, Subscriber list
management etc. And these are all free with the Pro product.
registered on our Forums and said yes to receive email,
then you'll be receiving information about ED from us via.
Group Mail. To get more information and put it through its
paces go and visit the Group
Mail Web site.
you need to delve inside a Window and get the low-down on its
Properties and see what Messages it is receiving and sending,
you usually open up Microsoft Spy++. Well now there is a new
kid on the block. Winspector is a drop in replacement for Spy++
with a much better user interface, and a host of features not
found in Spy++. For example you can see the properties of multiple
windows at once, hide specific windows or messages, pause the
message display while still capturing messages and lots more.
hasn't been out long and is going through a rapid development
phase, so problems are fixed quickly and if you request a
new feature, it might just see the light of day. And if that's
not enough to pike your interest, this will be - Winspector
is free. So go and download a copy from www.gipsysoft.com/articles/winspector
is one final thing I have to tell you about. Russ Freeman,
the guy behind Winspector has an excellent HTML control called
QHTM. If you want to display HTML in your applications, this
is the way to go. See www.gipsysoft.com/qhtm/index.shtml
for more information.
Pro by Xpert-Design
are lots of backup programs around, probably too many, however
finding one that meets your specific needs isn't always easy.
I don't know about you but I'm fanatical about backups. The
thought of loosing even a few hours work on ED is not one I
like to consider. I use a combination of backup techniques;
backups to other machines, to CD's, Zip disks and daily off-site
backups. For some time now I've relied on BackupXpress
Pro for these tasks. In a nutshell the things I like about
this product are; easy to configure to meet my reasonably complex
requirements, flexible backup target devices, the ability to
use strong encryption on backups and the ability to email or
FTP the backup to a remote site. A Trial Version can be
downloaded from http://www.xpertdesign.de/english/
Bat! - RITLABS
you've visited here before you'll know I've been a big fan of
the Calypso email client
for a long time. Well sadly Calypso is no more and the time
has come to find a replacement, which will be no easy feat.
much searching, talking and evaluating I've settled on The
Bat by RITLABS. This is easily the most full featured
email client I've seen; you name it, it does it. Not only
that but it has some impressive features I haven't seen elsewhere.
I regularly switch between using my Notebook and my Desktop
PC when working with my email. As you can image I have a lot
of email to manage and my email database is currently over
350MBytes. Over a 10M LAN copying this back and forth is painful
to say the least. The Bat has the ability to synchronize email
on multiple machines, which makes this chore so much easier.
It can also work as mail server for machines that don't have
a direct internet connection.
handles multiple accounts, HTML email, threaded views, has
good message management capabilities, powerful filtering,
impressive templates (which handle signatures and more), the
ability to work as list server, PGP support, tons of configuration
options, is multithreaded, etc.etc.
are areas I'd like to see improved in the User Interface,
which would make it easier to use, and the Help needs more
work, but I'm sure the developers are aware of this it will
continue to steadily improve.
Free Trial is available at http://www.ritlabs.com/the_bat/index.html
bottom line: Highly Recommended
spent a bit of time recently looking for a package to help me
automate some of the tedious and mundane tasks I need to do,
and do and do... Even simple things like routinely deleting
groups of temporary files had become a time wasting distraction.
I wanted a program with a short learning curve, yet powerful
enough to automate reasonably complex tasks. I found a few interesting
applications. I contacted the company behind one of the products
which was novel and I thought had potential. I never heard back,
which unfortunately seems a not uncommon experience on the Web.
I must say I seriously question why many Web sites exist, but
that's another issue entirely. In the end the product which
best suited my needs was WinScheduler
by Pitrinec Software. This is one of those programs which I
liked from the word go. It has a straightforward user interface
and it took me no time at all to set up some macros to do what
I wanted and then schedule them to run at appropriate times.
a macro is easy, and there is a wide range of commands you
can choose from like file delete/copy/move, starting applications,
FTP'ing files, opening URLs, moving the mouse, sending keystrokes
and lots more. You can add in flow control statements, wait
on timers and access variables. This is all done by choosing
commands from a tree, so you don't have to learn a new scripting
language. In the unlikely event that you need even more power
the Advanced Scripting version lets you use Basic,
VB and Java Script. A flexible Project Tree lets you define
and group your macros, and you can even use WinScheduler to
remind you about important dates.
can be purchased stand-alone or part of a even more powerful
suite of tools called ToolWorks, which includes Perfect Keyboard,
ClickyMouse and ToolbarPro. If you need a tool to help automate
your life a little, then download a free trial and evaluate
it for yourself.
Software, Inc. Glowcode
sure you all know the old adage about the last 10% of a project
taking 90% of the time. Well here is a great tool that may well
help turn the tide a little in your favour.
At the tail end of a project problems often fall into categories
like finding resource leaks, locating performance bottlenecks
and ensuring all the code has been tested.
It is in these all important and often difficult areas that
Glowcode's impressive diagnostic capabilties may prove to be
Glowcode seamlessly attaches itself to your C++ or VB application
and delivers a wealth of impressive and incredibly useful information.
Using Glowcode's Profiler on ED4W V4 we were able to quickly
pinpoint a number of areas where performance was lacking and
could easily be improved. We'd also been trying to find a resource
leak for some time with other tools without success, but Glowcode
identified the problem area straight away.
If you're looking for a tool to help iron out pesky wrinkles
in your application then I strongly recommend you give Glowcode
a try. You can download a free evaluation copy from
www.glowcode.com Two quick caveats; 1) I've only used it
with C++ and 2) it only runs on NT.
by Mathew Woolsey
the years we've been developing ED for Windows we've had a number
of requests to provide a Hex editing capability. Well to be
honest this has never been a very high priority for us, particularly
when there are programs around especially designed to perform
this task, and at very reasonable prices. The one I recommend
you try is HEXpert. It comes in 16 and 32 bit versions and can
edit files as large as 16Mbytes. A Trial Version can be downloaded
||What's your opinion?
So what do you think of this area of our Web,
or any other area for that matter? Or maybe you'd like to comment on the programs I've
listed. Drop me an email to email@example.com
and let me know. And by the way don't forget to let us know about your favourite