xNeat Clipboard Manager: a lightweight clipboard manager with a number of useful functions

XNeat Clipboard Manager is a free clipboard manager program that allows you to maintain a history clipped text, files, and folders and to use these to perform a number of useful functions, including pasting historical items, searching for clipped text in Google, translating clipped text, making clipped items “permanent” (sticky) for later use, and a number of other functions.

This program will allow you to copy multiple items at once, and then paste whichever item you had previously copied at will later on.

I often have an internal debate as to whether or not I will post a certain program. What I do in these cases (and xNeat Clipboard Manager was such a case) is install on my computer for a few days in order to gauge its usefulness and/or its user experience.

I now decided I like this one enough to keep, and will go through the pros and cons of this software below.

But before I do let me describe how it works; anything you copy will be added to the xNeat Clipboard Manager history. Next, instead of pasting the clipboard contents as normal (CTRL+V) pressing (CTRL+Shift+V) will display the small program dialog that lists all items retained in history. At that point you could either click on the item you want to past it or otherwise perform a number of functions on any of the displayed items, such as searching for any entry in Google, launching a Google translation (for some two dozen languages), or making an entry “sticky”. If the clipped text is a URL you have the option to open that URL in the browser.

PROS:

  • xNeat Clipboard Manager - make stickyMake sticky: anything you clip can be “made sticky” in the sense that it will always be there, similar to the basic functionality provided by a program such as PhraseExpress.
  • Items captured: maintains a history of clipped text and copied files/folders. The latter enables you to use this program as a kind of file basket; all you have to do is copy a file, folder, or executable and then make it sticky. Next you can invoke the program dialog and use it to access the file/folder by right clicking “open” (remember though that the default action is “paste”).
  • Search Google: clip some text and open the program dialog, then right click on “search Google”. Works from all apps/locations.
  • Translate: a very handy way to translate text; simply clip it and launch a Google translation (from a choice of 24 languages) from the xNeat Clipboard Manager dialog (see first screenshot above). On the flip side, the text has to be re-pasted into the form once the Google translate page opens, and you will have to determine what the language the original text is in yourself.User can determine # of items to hold: a very useful option to have; 10 items default on install but you can change this according to what you feel works best for you.
  • Launch URL: if the clipped text looks like a URL you can open it in the browser using the “browse” right click entry. URLs seem to require that they begin with “http://” though; the program does not recognize text beginning with “www.” as a URL.
  • Memory use: less that 1 meg (approx 500K) in memory. Pretty darn amazing.

CONS:

  • Translation: will open the Google tranlsate page
  • Does not handle images copied into the clipboard. Somewhat puzzling this, as most other free programs that perform a similar function do.
  • Program will call home when installed, and will refuse to install when offline. The author states that this is to ensure that the latest version is being used, keep track of number of installations (using hardware signature), and that no personal info is sent. He states that this is verifiable using any packet sniffer, since all info is sent using the http protocol.
  • Bugs: the program seems not to offer the standard functions if the clipped entry is “xNeat Clipboard Manager”. No biggie, but somewhat strange.

Wish list

  • Support for image clips
  • Translation: automatically paste the text to be translated into the form in the Google translate page.
  • The ability to customize the default action for files/folders that are in the sticky area (I would like “open” instead of “paste”).

The verdict: I really like this program. It is somewhat similar to other freeware clipboard manager, of which I will mention ClipDiary, CLCL, YC3, and Clipboard CC. However, what I like about xNeat Clipboard Manager is the innovative collection of functions that can be performed such as Google search and translate, as well a the pop-up interface which is really practical. I also like the remarkable low memory usage. A good job overall!

Version Tested: 1.0.0.5

Compatibility: Windows XP, Vista (32 bit).

Go to the program home page to download the latest version (approx 560K).


 
 
 
Samer Kurdi

Samer Kurdi

Has been reviewing software since 2006 when he started Freewaregenius.com
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  • http://xbeta.info xbeta-????

    1. if you use CLCL, you can also try ClipX.
    2. the open source Ditto is better, if not the best

  • Melvyn

    Ditto-CP is the leader in this class. I’m not connected to the developer but I have donated to the project. I’m a big evangelist for this product.

    Pros:
    – Handles all possible clipboard contents
    – Free & OSS
    – Portable version available
    – Handles “sticky” content in a very organised manner and allows you to group saved items
    – Rock solid application – I’ve been using it for years and suffered not a single crash

    Cons:
    – Extremely customizable and the options screens are not as well organized as they could be (almost 20 options are grouped on a “general” tab)

  • Viswanathan

    I have tried many clipboard managers but none of them handle Unicode text (in languages other than English, specifically Indian) perfectly.

    Either they do not handle them at all or handle them imperfectly or handle them correctly when they are in plain text format but incorrectly when they are in rich-text format.

    Any good clipboard manager solution from anybody which will handle Unicode text in any format, perfectly, at all the times? I have not tried Xclipboard manager yet though.

    – Vish

  • tun

    How about ArsClip? I have been using that for years. Haven’t found nothing better (at least for me)!

  • Yaron

    Vish, I never wrote in your language, but I do use Hebrew, and sometimes Arabic.

    As far as the text is concerned, Ditto-CP (which I join a few other commentors here in recommending) does a good job. It copies, stores, and pastes these in Unicode without any problems (e.g. text direction, individual characters, letter and word order, paragraph structure, all remain the same).

    It *does* have some small *formatting* issues with rich-text. It does not involve anything with the text itself, but only with the formatting (e.g. bold characters may lose the bold attribute when pasting from history, even while other things like colours and underline remain).

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  • Samer

    @ Xbeta, Melvin, tun
    I like Ditto, ArsClip, and ClipX
    So much freeware, so little time!

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  • Vish

    Thanks in TONS, Yaron. Ditto did satisfy my needs perfectly. Sorry for the delayed feedback though.

    I take this opportunity to wish Samer tons and tons of good luck with the new design of freewaregenius. Thank God the recent problem with the website proved to be a blessing in disguise. Never a day passes by without me having a look at freewaregenius.

    Cheers!!!
    – Viswanathan

  • Charleen

    And theres a new coming free software for clipboard extension – click.to (http://www.clicktoapp.com/). My favorite functions are:

    1. Picture direct upload to facebook, twitter,
    2. Table content in clipboard automatically fill into excel
    3. Url in clipboard opened in standard browser.
    4. Text or pictures open and save in pdf.

    Its not a standard clipboard manager, as it does not support history access, but somehow, Im getting addicted to it.