Traybar - FREE Start Menu Replacement Software (Freeware)
Sometimes, the Start Menu just doesn't cut it for me. Ok, most of the time, the start menu doesn't cut it for me. It's slow, disorganized, easily cluttered when any new program is installed, full of things I don't need, and lacking some of the ones I do need.
I keep my most often used shortcuts on the left side of my middle monitor, but there are a few reasons I only keep a minimal amount here. First, Windows will randomly lose the formatting, even if I've organized them and rebooted multiple times (implying it should save the settings) - one crash of an IE window could take the whole thing down, and upon reboot it's back to a random, or alphabetical order. Second, there's just too much chance for an accidental click with them there out in the open. I've already quite a few times gone to grab the scroll bar in the left monitor, and click Photoshop instead. With how many programs I have open at a time, a resource hog like that could take minutes to open. Not very efficient!
Instead, TrayBar allows you to fully customize what I like to call a "start menu replacement", which acts very similarly to a custom start menu, except it runs faster and is cleaner looking (and more easily customizable [3,4]).
- Runs in systray (starts with Windows)
- Extremely fast loading and responsive interface
- Clean, usable interface with no learning curve[2,5]
- Simple options, no bloatware, uses low resources/overhead
- 600K average mem usage (winamp, open not playing: 1,240K; services.exe 1,308K) (my machine)
- Integrates into context (right-click) menu in Windows perfectly[3,4]
- Multiple folders and separators for easy organization
- Customizable icons
- Ability to open emails with the TO field filled out (see note below)
The author no longer supports/is writing this software but if you have any questions he has responded to my emails and is a very very nice guy. I've never had any problem with the software at all, everything has always functioned exactly as expected, so I can see why he isn't going to mess with it! This is by far one of my most often used tools, and I can't imagine life without it now that I have it installed both at home and at work. Check it out!
 my left-side shortcuts
 context-menu integration
 context-menu "add shortcut" dialog
 config screen
 config a custom icon
 simple options
 task manager memory comparison