Launchy makes it easy to quickly launch programs. Hit Alt-Space
to bring up its tidy little program window, and type in the name of
a program in your Windows Start menu. Launchy closes, and brings up
the requested program.
Some included plugins extend the utility’s out-of-the-box
capabilities, such as one that can handle basic calculator tasks,
and another that allows for opening your Internet Explorer and
Firefox bookmarks as you would a program. Reading Firefox bookmarks
requires taking a quick step to enable bookmark exports (the steps
are described in Launchy’s help document, which is accessible online or
from Launchy’s start menu folder).
These initial features will by themselves make using XP a good
deal smoother, but if you’re willing to dig in a little, Launchy
can do plenty more. For example, you can tell Launchy to add the
contents of any additional directory–be they programs, music
files, or most anything else–to its catalog of launchable items.
You can also use an included plugin called Runny to create custom
commands, such as starting a program with an additional typed
Launchy sports a nice set of options, including choosing a
different program skin or transparency level. The app will by
default start automatically with Windows, with an icon in the
Technical users will get the most out of Launchy’s more advanced
features, but it’s a useful tool even without changing a thing.
It’s written for Windows XP (with Linux and Mac OS X versions also
available), but Launchy may work on other Windows versions as well.
And if you want to try another well-made, easy-to-use program
launcher, check out Enso
Note: This program is donationware. It is free to try,
but the author accepts and encourages donations towards further
development. This file is listed as supported on XP only, but users
have reported using it successfully on other Windows OSs as