It’s time of yet another show and tell moment. It always interests me to see what people have in their quick-launch tool bar and/or system tray. I know, not all of us use these things. I remember quite a few people in the Show me your desktop thread were using desktop managers that eschew tool bars and trays. We had some users of Awesome, some users of Ratpoison and few others. But if you own a system that does have a quick launch tool bar of sorts, let me know what is in it.
Why do I want to know this? Because it shows me what software you use on your daily basis – what tools do you consider to be so essential they need to be accessible with just one click. For most of my software I use Launchy and Katapult. I hate navigating application menus. But I still keep bunch of apps on the tool bar for an even quicker access:
This is a screen shot from my Kubuntu machine at work. Let’s ignore the K menu which is standard, and the two icons next to it. One expands to a list of frequently used file system locations (home, storage media etx..) the other is a standard KDE “show desktop” icon. These are fairly standard in KDE. The rest of the apps (from left to right, top to bottom) are:
- Kontact – my default email client on that machine
- Terminal – opens a kterm for me – I tend to hit this 10 million times a day on average
- Firefox – first thing I open, last thing I close before logging off (I close it because of memory leaks)
- Kile – LaTex editor. I used to use it a lot when I was in school – I don’t really need it for work, but it’s there
- SmartSVN – it did not have an icon, so I used this squirrelly thing
- Virtual Box – I use it to run a Windows XP copy so that I can test windows specific things on it
- Komodo Edit – my current IDE of choice for PHP
- CrossLoop – remote screen sharing app based on TightVNC I often use to troubleshoot things with coworkers on location. Runs perfectly well under Wine btw.
- Speed Crunch Calculator – just a basic calculator for when I need to crunch some numbers or make a quick dec to hex/binary conversion
- KSnapshot – basic KDE app for taking screenshots
My Windows box at home has a much more minimalistic setup:
- Firefox – as above
- Thunderbird – my primary email client on the windows platform
- µtorrent – it only weighs in at few hundred KB, is full featured and the memory footprint is almost nonexistent – there is just no way you couldn’t love it.
- Foobar 2000 – if I want to listen to music, I use Foobar because it is minimalistic simple and functional
This sort of shows that at home I’m primarily running Firefox. Everything else is secondary. Also, the canonical “Show Desktop” icon is not there because I simply use Win+D for that.
The system tray is another matter. It shows how many services you are running on your machine. Here is my Kubuntu tray:
This may seem like a lot of stuff but it is not. Almost all of these apps are actually native to KDE and start with my window manager. If you use KDE you should recognize them:
- The flag is the keyboard layout switcher (I frequently switch to Polish Programmer’s layout and back).
- The padlock is the GPG key manager (running because Kontact is using it).
- The standard Network tray icon
- The standard power management icon
- The Korganize notification daemon (part of the Kontact suite)
- The standard volume management icon
- The standard clipboard management icon (aka Klipper)
- The standard bluetooth management icon
- The standard Kmail icon (shows a number of unread emails)
- Kwallet – the standard KDE password manager (not shown)
- Google Desktop Search – yeah, I use it – sue me (not shown)
Here is my windows machine:
Once again, minimalistic approach. I try to run as few things on that machine because it is old, and I want to squeeze as much performance out of it as I can.
- The Language Bar – for switching keyboard layouts
- The Standard Network Manager Icon
- McAfee Antivirus (hidden) – I paid for it few millenia ago and they have been diligently charging my credit card ever since and I never got around to cancel it and use something else
- There is also a sound manager, and “safely remove hardware” icon there and nothing else.
Now it’s your turn. What is in your Quick Launch tool bar? What is running in your tray. Let me know!
[tags]quick launch, system tray, icons, launchy, katapult[/tags]